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I RECKON - Gale Maiden (One page Encourager Series)

May 2007

REJOICE YOU WHO ARE BARREN…YOU ARE FREE!

It is most delightful (I think!) to consider that God works all of His miracles from a place of death. It is when we reckon ourselves dead (In Christ's substitutionary death) that we can then immediately reckon ourselves resurrected. David Wilkerson once wrote that with every promise of God there comes a death sentence. The death sentence is upon your ability to bring the promise about.

The good news is that I do not have to kill myself. I am blessed as I read from scripture and find out that the death sentence upon my ability to produce has already been fulfilled in the once and for all sacrificial death of Christ. The Apostle Paul wrote, “ Reckon (consider) yourself dead .” What does this mean? It means that if I believe that Jesus died as my substitute on the cross then I must already be dead. I am now dead to sin and sin no longer has dominion over me (Rom 6:14). I am now and forever empowered to sin no more. Is this possible? Of course it is possible or the cross was in vain. Note the command by the Spirit of God to awake to righteousness and SIN NO MORE. God would not ask us to do something that isn't possible.

Awake to righteousness, and do not sin; for some do not have the knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame. (1 Cor 15:34, NKJ)

I now by faith have righteousness imputed to me. This simply means that I am through faith in total agreement with God that He is RIGHTEOUS i.e. always right.

Ahhhh… and the icing on the cake is that now that I have reckoned myself dead it means that I can also reckon myself resurrected. Righteousness is the life of God and I reckon that if by faith righteousness has been imputed to me then I must have the resurrection life of God. I reckon, I reckon, I reckon…glory to God…I reckon!

REJOICE YOU WHO ARE DEAD…YOU ARE FREE!

It seems such a paradox to rejoice over being dead but note the following scripture.

"Shout for joy, O barren one (unable to produce; dead), you who have borne no {child;} break forth into joyful shouting and cry aloud, you who have not travailed; for the sons of the desolate one {will be} more numerous than the sons of the married woman," says the LORD. (Isa 54:1, NAS, See <Gal 4:7>)

This verse is speaking of Sarah the wife of Abraham. Sarah, barren at the age of 90, could not produce Isaac their promised son. Only by the faith (promise) of God through Abraham and Sarah could Isaac come forth. Therefore this verse is saying to all whom cannot produce on your own rejoice…you now qualify for a miracle. What miracle? In the case of Abraham and Sarah the birth by promise (faith) of Isaac was a faith step in Abraham becoming the father of many nations. Those of us who by faith in the seed of Abraham i.e. Jesus Christ are now legitimate sons of Abraham and sons of God through Jesus the Christ.

CAST OUT THE BOND WOMAN…BRING IN THE FREE WOMAN

Again in the case of Abraham and Sarah we know that prior to faith prevailing in birthing Isaac to them, works produced an illegitimate son called Ishmael. Abraham became the father of Hagar's child Ishmael. The Apostle Paul in a reprimand to his church at Galatia for not continuing in faith wrote the following concerning Abraham and Sarah:

22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the bondwoman (Hagar) and one by the free woman (Sarah).

23 But the son (Ishmael) by the bondwoman was born according to the flesh, and the son (Isaac) by the free woman through the promise (faith).

24 This is allegorically speaking: for these {women} are two covenants , one {proceeding} from Mount Sinai bearing children who are to be slaves; she is Hagar.

25 Now this Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia, and corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children.

26 But the Jerusalem above is free; she is our mother.

27 For it is written, "Rejoice, barren woman who does not bear; break forth and shout, you who are not in labor; for more are the children of the desolate than of the one who has a husband."

28 And you brethren, like Isaac, are children of promise.

29 But as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him {who was born} according to the Spirit, so it is now also.

30 But what does the Scripture say? "Cast out the bondwoman and her son, for the son of the bondwoman shall not be an heir with the son of the free woman."

31 So then, brethren, we are not children of a bondwoman, but of the free woman.

(Gal 4:22-31, NAS)

By faith (promise) in His grace (God's works) we are birthed into total freedom from legalism (self works). We are the seed of Abraham, the father of faith. We are heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ to all of the Kingdom of God.

If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise (faith). (Gal 3:29, NIV, parenthesis added)

As noted this two women allegorically represent two covenants i.e. a covenant of life and a covenant of death. By the loving grace of God we all can now choose or covenant with the victorious life of God. Our goal must be to preach Jesus the Christ and demonstrate this good news of God's love to the entire world.

 

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