Notes from Norman

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Christian Living

by Norman P. Grubb

I think the answer, in so many who have grown up in the evangelical faith, is the almost universal situation - that the only life they knew has been as born again believers, to hope for a gradual spiritual growth by the practiced habits of prayer, Scripture reading, church going and activities, and always with responses to assaults in the flesh which carry guilt and condemnation, even with recourse to I John 1.9: and the general heavy weight of exhortation on fresh commitments, more devoted dedication and so on. And even the best taught regarding that Paul's "Reckon yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin and alive unto God" as positional rather than attainable.
But the fixed certain reality of a total end to a self operated by indwelling sin (the spirit of error), and as totally that same self inwardly joined to the Spirit of Truth, through the blood and body death and resurrection of the Saviour, and with no rival indweller, bringing with it the total inner consciousness by the Spirit's witness (1 John 5.10) of fearless freedom to be themselves, first of all seems too hopelessly "out of this world", or even too terrifyingly dangerous after years of soaking in the life of 'Live fearfully, carefully’ and thus it meets with shock, caution, even opposition (Isn't that license??); and usually only after a period, the very hungry, who can't remain in the old bondages, are brought to see the amazement of this total faith, not works, reality, and the final "leap" of faith-affirmation, that "word of faith, by which they transfer all their shivering self-doubts into this given glorious Bible-attested fact of such words as Gal. 2.20; and they firmly say it of themselves, and usually such "dangerous" interpretations - that they are now themselves human forms of Christ, branches expressing that Vine, or Christ in their human forms; and usually it takes that bold sold-out word to being the "confessing with their mouths". And then the rest, such as we have outlined, followed in their lives, and they say, "There's nothing else! This is all there is!"