Christianity was so puzzling. I was a Methodist but what was the point of Christ dying on a Cross? I asked my friend who as another 12 year old explained that we needed rebirth, but he didn't explain why Christ had to die. I got sucked into atheism.
Here's what I didn't know.
True Christianity is a spirit religion. When we hear en evangelist like Billy Graham in his heyday, we are hearing a ministry supernaturally given by God (one of 5 main ones) to lead people at spirit level to connect with the Lord who is Spirit.
Somewhere in the mix are intellectual concept changes, but faith is something of the heart.
Sometimes we are told to ask Jesus into our heart.
More happens that first day then we realise. Just because we understand hardly nothing doesn't mean it doesn't happen. The Israelites took 40 years understanding what happened to them the day they crossed the Red Sea...it didn't mean they had to go back and do it again.
To decide to follow Jesus as your Lord is to change spirit operators....but on day one you haven't got the discernment to know what is the devil masquerading as you.....so you just think you have turned your life over to Christ.
Ephesians Ch 2
And you]were dead in your trespasses and sins, 2 in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. 3 Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, [d]indulging the desires of the flesh and of the [e]mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.
More proof 1 Corinthians 12.2
You know that when you were pagans, you were led astray to the mute idols, however you were led. 3 Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking [a]by the Spirit of God says, “Jesus is accursed”; and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the Holy Spirit.
I know galatians 2.20 sounds off the wall....it is nolonger I who live but Christ.....
This is the actual reality of changing spirit operators.
Here's an important concept:
When the devil said in Genesis 3 we could run ourselves thankyou very much.....he was lying. In "doing our own thing" we cut off in that instant at spirit level from God's empowerment and enabling and unbeknown to us we switched to a different power company. One that had a termination date. Or death.
What we have been "sold" however is not that....the lie that every human believes is that they are not only selfpowered when they are not....but that it is all going on what I call "front of house" in our soul.According to how we think and feel.
Now these exist. But by locking us front of house the devil can empower and manoeuvre us from the rear into anything pretty much. He got Germans into Nazism. China and Russia into atheist Marxism, and Russia was pretty Christian at the time. He got the West to murder their unborn babies, and he is pushing to get his end of life care passed, or euthanasia. All logical reasoning, but none of it would get passed the door if we were still living in God;s Presence. We would know instantly that none of this has anything to do with the sanctity of life, and not taking a person's life.
ALL mature Spirit Life is, is knowing our new Resident , Christ is fused to our spirit full time and that we are living out from Him.
The Hebrews 4 .11-12 process is pretty exacting...but gradually we learn our Christ walk....that is Christ in us the hope of glory as us in our form, and we can differentiate this from our previous phony and cancerous "independent self delusion".....which was never authentic us anyway.
Jesus said when you pray....don't do all the religious external hoohah....go into your secret inner chambers inside yourself and meet with the Father there....and this is where you start to learn how He created you in your authenticity as a unique you.
You start acting from within yourself. You say no when pressure to go beyond what you sense is your genuine being made in Christ is being exerted by others. And when you sense to do something, you don't hold back out of fear what others say or think.....because you know in your innards it's for you to do.
If Richard Branson had taken his cues from how entrepreneurial Britain is he would be stacking shelves in Tesco instead of running all his Virgin businesses.
So taking up your Cross according to Hebrews 4.11-12 may mean NOT doing something, but may mean doing a whole load of others. All the religious baloney in churches is largely that.