Manifest the Son
By: Rhonda Mead
“Now may the God of Peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming (parousia) of our Lord Jesus Christ.” – II Thessalonians 5:23
There is a call going out across the land to all that are born of the Spirit to, "Manifest the Son, manifest the Son!” The revelation (the unveiling) of the Son has begun through His appearing in those who now manifest Him to a degree never seen before this time. The “coming of our Lord” in I Thessalonians 5:23 (in the original Greek) is the word ‘parousia.’ Parousia can also mean “presence.” His return has begun and His presence on this earth is expanding through a progressive increase in the glory of the Lord - in His “Bride” or “overcomers.” As we die to self-rule in our lives, more of Christ’s Life is allowed to be expressed on this earth. The glory, which in one facet can be thought of as the character of God coming forth from our lives, releases more of Christ’s influence in a multi-membered body.
“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son,” – Colossians 1:13
When we were born again we were transferred from the domain of darkness to the kingdom of His beloved Son. We were removed from the lifeline of Adam, on which we were destined to eternal separation from God, and placed into the life of Christ, which is synonymous with eternal life.
“Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection,”
– Romans 6:3-5
The life of Christ is eternal life. His life is like a river with no beginning and no end. When we receive Christ as our Savior, we are baptized (or immersed) into Him - like a drop of water placed into the River of Life. The drop of water (our life) is no longer distinguishable from the whole river (Christ), but we become one with Him.
We are a spirit, have a soul (mind, will and emotions), and live in a body. At new birth, our spirit is made alive by the Holy Spirit. Consequently, we no longer have a separate identity from Christ. The question that arises, then - in order for Christ to be manifested on the earth – is how do we get the life of Christ, which is now one with our spirit, to permeate our soul and body (resulting in outwardly visible changes in our attitudes and actions)?
“Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.” - Romans 6:11
“Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.”
- Colossians 2:12 (KJV)
The former Christian band, Petra, performed a song entitled, “A Dead Reckoning.” This is exactly the truth that Romans 6:11 is proclaiming. We were crucified with Christ when we were born again. When we were placed into Christ by an operation of the Spirit, we became one with Him. Since there is no time in the spirit, when Christ was crucified, we were also crucified; when He was buried, we were buried; when He was raised to newness of life, so were we; and we are now seated with Him in heavenly places. We overcome the circumstances of this life by “reckoning (KJV)”or ‘appropriating’ what Christ has done as ours.
“He must increase, but I must decrease.” – John 3:30
“I affirm, brethren, by the boasting in you which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.” – I Corinthians 15:31
Each time we reckon ourselves dead to a specific aspect of our flesh and make the choice, whether of attitude or action, that the Holy Spirit is encouraging us to choose, more of our flesh is renewed and our spirit is strengthened. As we walk through the process of conforming to the image of Christ, we need to remember that our “self life” does not want to lose control and will hinder us at all cost in any attempt we make to die to ourselves. Hudson Taylor, a famed missionary to China, wrote a tract entitled, “Hudson Taylor’s Spiritual Secret.” His spiritual secret was, that after many years of trying to “die to self,” the Holy Spirit gave him the revelation that he was already “crucified with Christ.” This revelation showed him that freedom from the tyranny of “self” would come in the appropriation of what Christ had already done - not in sincere self–effort. We “die daily” by reckoning ourselves dead, not by attempting to put our own flesh to death. The resurrection power of Christ is what gives us the strength to choose the attitudes and actions of the Spirit. We can do nothing without Him!
“Always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.” - II Corinthians 4:10,11
The Spirit of the Lord is presently calling to you to, “Manifest the Son of God in your mortal flesh!” This is the time of His appearing to all mankind, and He will appear through one member of His Bride at a time, until “…the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea (Habakkuk 2:14).” The invitation has been issued to you.
“But emptied (laid aside His privileges) Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” – Philippians 2:7,8
There is a cost - a forsaking of all our rights to anything or anyone on this earth, but our Lord, Who laid aside His rights and humbled Himself even to death on the cross, has went before us and offers His grace - all we need to overcome. He is the “firstfruit” to overcome that there might be many more like Him.
If you struggle with this decision, remember, “while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal (II Corinthians 4:18).”
“For I reckon (consider) that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” – Romans 8:18 (KJV)
*all scripture taken from the NASB unless otherwise noted