The Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus

Romans

The Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus

October 10th, 1954 @ 10:50 AM

Romans 8:2-9

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
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THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS

Dr. W. A. Criswell

Romans 8:2, 9-14

10-10-54    10:50 a.m.

 

You are listening to the services of the First Baptist Church in downtown Dallas.  We welcome to our congregation this morning more visitors than I have seen in a long while.  You have come to Dallas for the fair, for the Merchandising Mart, for business, for football, for fun, and a host of you today for the worship of God.  And in this beloved church a tremendous part of that dedicated worship is the elevation of our souls to its highest spiritual usefulness: the attendance upon the preaching of the Word of God.  “The flower fadeth, the grass withereth: but the word of God abides for ever” [Isaiah 40:8].

In this pulpit ministry, Sunday by Sunday, every Lord’s Day morning, again in the Lord’s Day evening, we are preaching through the Bible: where we left off the service before, we pick up the service at present and carry it through.  Our message today is in the eighth chapter of the Book of Romans.  And in your Bibles, turn to it.  The message is found in the second verse and the ninth verse of the eighth chapter of the Book of Romans.  And title of the message is The Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus.  I read in the eighth chapter of the Book of Romans:

There is therefore now no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus. . .

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

[Romans 8:1-2]

Now the ninth verse:

Ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you.  Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His.

And if Christ be in you, the body is dead . . . the Spirit of life is the Spirit of righteousness.

And if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwelleth in you. . .

If you live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.

For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God, the children of God.

[Romans 8:9-11, 13-14]

All of which is an elaboration of my text and my subject: the Spirit of life which is in Christ Jesus [Romans 8:2].

From a boy, from a youth, all of us have been taught one of the great chapters of the Bible is the eighth chapter of the Book of Romans.  The seventh chapter ends in defeat: “O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” [Romans 7:24].  There is the spirit in human hearts, the spirit of carnality, the spirit of sin, the spirit of defeat; no man is able triumphantly and successfully to war against it.  “O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” [Romans 7:24].  How can any man ever be saved?  How could he?  How can he?  The answer is found in the eighth chapter of the Book of Romans.  Paul says there is a liberation, there is a deliverance, there is a salvation; and it is found, not in the keeping of a law, not in moralities, not in ethical philosophies, not in regenerations of a man’s own ableness, not in the power by which he can refashion his life; but it found, Paul says, in the gift of a new heart, of a new spirit, of a new inner dedication, a new inner motive, a new inner motive.  The triumph is found, Paul says, in the new spirit [Romans 8:1-11].  We who are in Christ are children of a different order, and do follow and are dedicated to a different spirit [Romans 8:1].

When Jesus was with His disciples going through Samaria, He set His face as though He would go to Jerusalem [Luke 9:51], which was an insult to any good Samaritan; and they did not receive Him [Luke 9:53].  So James and John came to the Lord Jesus and said, “Master, shall we bid fire come down from God out of heaven like Elijah did, and burn them up?”  And Jesus said, “Nay, not so, not so; for ye know not what spirit ye are of.  The Son of Man came not to destroy men’s lives, but to save men’s lives.  Ye know not what spirit ye are of.  You are of a different spirit, you are of a different kind, you are of a different order”; and the difference lies in the spirit!  [Luke 9:54-56].  The great thesis of Paul in the eighth chapter of Romans is that the difference in men, the difference in the Christian lies in his heart, it lies in his spirit [Romans 8:1-39].

Now could I digress to say for this moment that the difference in any man lies in his spirit; all of the rest is peripheral, all the rest is external, all the rest is on the outside.  It is just incidental; it’s not central, it’s not dynamic.  The difference in men is difference in spirit: it’s the spirit that makes the difference!  A man can live heroically and have a tremendous heroic spirit, and be in a cage or a dungeon or a cell.  And a man can be a slave and live in a palace.  The difference lies in the spirit.  All else is transitory and peripheral; the eternal lies in the spirit.

If I could keep on digressing for a moment, could I illustrate that?  Napoleon was not an unmixed curse to France.  He did many noble things.  He codified the laws of France, one of the great works of all time.  He did many noble deeds.  He said many great things.  He was a genius beyond compare; never has been in the history of the world a man of the dramatic ingenuity in battle strategy of Napoleon Bonaparte.  But the man has to be judged by his spirit.  What kind of a spirit did Napoleon have?  He was selfish and ambitious and grasping.  Typical of him: before the battle of Leipzig his generals came to him and said, “Sir, if we fight this battle we shall lose one million men!” And Napoleon answered in contumely, “What is the loss of a million men if my ambition to rule the world can be achieved?”  He was inordinately selfish and ambitious; and his spirit makes the man, and he’s judged by his spirit.

In contrast, could I take the honored father of our native land, George Washington?  In no way spectacular, and dramatic, and ingenious, and able as Napoleon Bonaparte; but he was wonderfully humble, and his heart was filled with goodness toward his people and toward his country.  When an Englishman came across the sea to visit the Continental Congress, he asked one of the men, “Which one is General Washington?” And the man replied, “When Congress goes to prayer, the man who kneels will be General Washington.”  And you judge the man by his spirit.

Back of all of these concordats, and treaties, United Nations assemblies, and all of the means whereby on the international scene we are trying to achieve a lasting and orderly peace, it is as nothing, it is less than nothing unless there lies back of a nation, who enters into those contracts, a worthy and a glorious spirit.  It’s the spirit that makes the man.

Now may I return to my text?  Christ says our deliverance and our salvation lies in the new spirit, the new heart, the new regenerated soul, the new motive that is found a gift from heaven on the inside of the child of God: “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death” [Romans 8:2].  As many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the children of God [Romans 8:14].  “If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is not of His” [Romans 8:9].  It’s on the inside; it’s in the heart, it’s in the spirit.

The Spirit of Christ–and you’ll find it here as I open my Bible and look at it—the Spirit is capitalized, “the law of the Spirit,” capital “S,” “of life in Christ Jesus . . . If any man have not the Spirit,” capital “S,” “the Spirit of Christ, he is not of His” [Romans 8:9].  Now, I am not able to enter into the mysteries of the divine and holy and adorable Trinity; but the third Person of the Trinity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, is God in us and God among us, God working, God moving, God doing, God manifest: the Spirit of God, the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, the Spirit of Jesus [John 14:17].  Our holy Savior was conceived by the Holy Spirit, through the yielded life of a maiden girl [Luke 1:30-38].  Born, conceived of the Holy Spirit, His life was God because of His conception by the Holy Spirit [Matthew 1:20].  Our Lord was baptized, set aside, dedicated to His messianic ministry through the Holy Spirit [Matthew 3:16].  Our Lord was filled with the Holy Spirit, [Luke 4:1]. Our Lord was led by the Holy Spirit [Matthew 4:1].  Our Lord died and was raised again by the power of the Holy Spirit [Romans 1:4].  Apart from the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, Christ Jesus Himself was not able to do His mighty works [Acts 10:38]: He was not able to speak the revelation of God [John 6:63].  The yielded life of Christ in the hands of the Spirit of God achieved that holiness and that blessedness that we read, and love, and adore, and trust in the Lord Jesus.

Now, it is that Spirit of life in Christ Jesus that is to be our faith and our strength, our inner motive: God dwelling inside.  “Be ye filled with the Spirit” [Ephesians 5:18]; our whole life permeated with the Spirit of God.  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus gives us the triumph and the victory, the dedicated purpose, the holy commitment that makes one the child of God [Romans 10:9-10].

Now, the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus manifested itself in so many precious, wonderful, excellent, beautiful ways.  When I think of the Spirit of our Master, I think of holiness, and reverence, and goodness, and enthusiasm, and joy, and victory, and faith, and assurance, and triumph, and obedience, and dedication, and compassion.  Oh, a flood of things comes into my soul as I think of the Spirit of God manifesting itself in the life and in the ministry of our Lord Jesus.

I thought this morning, in the time that I had, I might take two or three and speak of them.  The Spirit of life in Christ Jesus: “If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His” [Romans 8:9].  All right, the first one: the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, “If a man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His”; the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, the first one: it is the spirit of a great assurance of and an illimitable eternal trust in God our Father—the reality and the presence and the ableness of God, practicing the presence of God, living in the reality of God.  Now by that I mean this: when the Lord Jesus drew aside and knelt down to pray, He felt it was the Spirit of Christ, He felt He was talking to Somebody who heard.

Now if I stood by His side, I wouldn’t see anybody, I wouldn’t see anything; it would just be as when you kneel in your bedroom by the side of your sleeping cot, by the side of your soft bed.  You kneel down, and there’s nobody there, and there’s nobody can see, and nobody around; and a heathen, a pagan, an unbeliever could come and watch you, and wonder, “Just what are you doing?”  The spirit of Christ was one of illimitable trust in God [John 8:29]; and when He knelt, and when He spake, He was filled with the assurance that there was Somebody who bowed down His ear to listen and to hear [John 11:42].  And when the Lord stepped out on the water [Matthew 14:25-26], He had the perfect assurance there was Somebody who would sustain Him and hold Him up.  And when He took bread, to bless it, and to break it, and to feed the five thousand [Matthew 14:19-21], He did it in the perfect assurance that as He brake, God would multiply the loaves as He fed the vast number of people.  And when our Lord went about all of His ministry, He had the perfect assurance that when He spake it would be done: when He spoke and the dead were raised [John 11:43-44], when He touched the leper and the leper was cleansed [Matthew 8:2-3], when He touched the eye of the blind and the blind man could see [Matthew 9:27-30], He did that in perfect assurance and in trust that God would see it through.  And when the Lord died, He yielded up His spirit [Matthew 27:32-50], He gave it to God, in the perfect assurance that in His death God would take care of His spirit [Luke 23:46], and would raise Him again according to His word the third day [Luke 24:46].  He lived His life in absolute assurance, in complete trust in the reality and the saving power and presence of His Father God.

And that is the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus; “And if a man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His” [Romans 8:9].  We are to be filled with the spirit of persuasion, of assurance, of faith, of commitment in the reality, the truth, the ableness of Almighty God our Father.  When we kneel to pray, He is there listening.  When we seek to do a work in His name, He is there helping by our side.  When we face the insoluble and the mystery that surrounds all of our life, somehow He knows and He understands, and He will see us through.

About your child: what will become of your child?  You read the paper, and you think about the things that go on in the world, and your child grows up, and how do you know?  You don’t know; but you can trust God and live in perfect assurance in God.  And what of all of the sorrows and heartaches and pitfalls of our lives?  What of them?  And what meaning do they have?  Don’t understand, don’t know, can’t explain—don’t have to!  Just leaving it to Him, the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus [Romans 8:2].  It is the spirit of an absolute and utter dependence upon God.  It’s in His hands, it’s in His care, and that is enough.  We’ll live our lives in His will, trusting Him: the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, depending upon God [Romans 8:2].

Might I say a second one?  The Spirit of life in Christ Jesus: “If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His” [Romans 8:9]; the Spirit of Christ is the spirit of an absolute and complete obedience to the Father.  In the fifteenth chapter of this same Book of Romans, Paul speaks of Christ our example, as not pleasing Himself: “He pleased not Himself” [Romans 15:3].  And in the fifth chapter of the Book of Hebrews, the author of Hebrews speaks of our Lord Jesus as this: “Though a Son, though a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered” [Hebrews 5:8].  Our Lord Jesus, in the Gospel of Luke, as a Youth, as a Boy, our Lord Jesus, the Bible says, went down to Nazareth and was subject unto His parents [Luke 2:51].  That is, when His mother told Him this, He did it.  When His stepfather told Him that, He did it.  He was obedient to His parents.  His life was committed to their care.  And as they guided, so He walked.  And as they spake and directed, so He did.  He was subject to His parents all the days of His youth [Luke 2:51].  He was the only child who ever knew more than His parents; but He was subject to His parents.  Then when He became of age and entered His messianic ministry, our Savior again was subject to Somebody else: as our Savior, He was subject to God [Luke 22:42].  No will of His own, but doing the will of God: “He pleased not Himself; and He learned obedience by the things which He suffered” [Hebrews 5:8]; that is, what God called Him to do was a thing that He didn’t want to do.

I don’t suppose any man—and Jesus was a man—I don’t suppose any man would rejoice in being cast out, in being repudiated by his people [Matthew 27:22-23], in being buffeted and slapped and spit upon, in being crowned with thorns, and mocked and ridiculed, and the knee bowed, “Hail, King of the Jews,” with a reed for a scepter in his hand [Matthew 27:27-31].  I don’t suppose any man would look with anticipation upon a death by execution, by crucifixion.  “He learned obedience by the things which He suffered” [Hebrews 5:8].  He was under authority; His will, Somebody else’s.  “Not My will, but Thine, be done” [Luke 22:42]—the spirit in Christ Jesus.

So with the Christian, so with us, obedience, doing the will of the Father, it’s a task, it’s a suffering, it’s a commitment; but no man ever followed Christ except in those holy, and terrible, and awful, and tremendously costly words of our Savior when He said, “Except a man deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me, he cannot be My disciple.  For if a man will save his life, he must lose it [Matthew 16:24-25]…If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His” [Romans 8:9].  Not our will, but God’s; not what pleases me, but what pleases Him: His will be done [Luke 22:42]—the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus [Romans 8:2].

And may I take one more?  The Spirit of life in Christ Jesus: “If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His” [Romans 8:9]; I turn now from the inward heart, our own souls bared naked before God, praying, yielded, obedient, looking upon the face of God, seeking His favor and His will and His pleasure.  I turn now to the spirit of Christ as it is manifested in what you will see in us, what you are able to observe, what you are able to know, what you are able to follow as a man lives his life.  The spirit of Christ: it is always one of compassion, of sympathy, of understanding, of goodness, of yielded ministry; the spirit of Christ Jesus.

Did you ever think, the most beautiful parables the Lord ever spake are those parables of compassion?  There came down the road, our Lord said, a traveler; and thieves set upon him, took everything that he had, beat him, left him by the roadside to die.  And then He told the story of the Good Samaritan [Luke 10:30-37].  That’s the Lord.

Again, the Father who had two sons, and the younger was prodigal and left his father, and wasted his substance in hilarious and drunken and riotous living; and coming to himself, turned his face back home.  And you have the parable of the compassionate father greeting once again his prodigal boy [Luke 15:11-32].  There are not stories in all literature, in Greek, in Latin, in English, there is not story in language like the beautiful stories of the Lord Jesus speaking of the compassionate heart.

The beautiful spirit of our Lord, as it manifested itself in the work of His hands, was ever one of compassion.  A blind man moved Him: just to look at the blind man, it had a reverberation, it had a repercussion in His heart [Matthew 9:27-30; John 9:1-7].  It was like pulling a string on the piano: it would vibrate.  When the Lord looked at a blind man, something on the inside of Him vibrated.  When the Lord looked at a leper [Mark 1:40-41], going down the road with his hand over his mouth, crying, “Unclean!  Unclean! Unclean!” [Leviticus 13:45], that one unaware might know he was there, step out of the road and away and let him pass—when the Lord saw an unclean leper shouting that awful word as he walked down the street or down the road, it did something in His heart: there was a vibration He felt in it.  When the Lord saw people weeping, crying—isn’t it a strange thing about the Lord?—when the Lord saw people crying, He cried with them.  Jesus at the tomb, seeing Mary and Martha weeping, burst into tears Himself [John 11:32-35]; and He knew what He was going to do [John 11:43-44].  Did He cry because there was no victory, there was no triumph?  Why, He had triumph in His hands.  He had victory in His soul.  It was just a human manifestation of the human heart of Jesus: just to see people cry made Him cry—the compassionate heart of the Lord Jesus.

His great deeds of ministry were deeds of compassion.  I don’t think there is a sweeter verse in the Bible than in the [eighth] chapter of the Book of Matthew, when Matthew, describing his Lord, said, “And the Lord healed all of their diseases, and all who were brought to Him, from early in the morning to late at night, all who were brought to Him, He healed them every one: that it might be fulfilled, the word which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying,” listen to it, “Himself took our diseases, and bare our infirmities” [Matthew 8:16-17].  That is, He had a repercussion in Himself: when somebody cried, He cried; when somebody was hurt, He was hurt; when somebody was downcast and troubled, He was downcast and troubled; when they were in the valley, He was in the valley with them.  And that is preeminently the new spirit of the Christian.  The Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, “If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His” [Romans 8:9].

I want to say a word this morning in defense of something that you say, “Now we ought to take him out and hang him.  We just ought to do it.  There’s no man in America that ought to stand up and say what that preacher says.  We ought to shoot him as a traitor.”  All right, it’s the truth, and you ought to know it.  I’m going to say a word this morning in defense of socialism and communism.

Socialism and communism is a Christian heresy.  Don’t you ever sit down with yourself, and don’t you ever ask yourself, “What is this thing?  Here is a brilliant man, an intellectual, a professor in a great university, and he’s a communist!”  Don’t you ever ask yourself why?  You read the paper, and you say, “Why he’s crazy.  He’s inane.  He’s insane.  He’s dumb!”  You’re the one that’s inane and dumb.  Why don’t you find out why that intellectual—and he may be a preacher, he may be the pastor of a wonderful church, he may be the head of a great denominational organization—and he’s a socialist, or he’s half-communist, or he’s pink?  Why don’t you ever ask yourself why?

Another thing, why do you suppose that there are people in this world by the millions who will don a uniform, who will pick up a gun, and who will fanatically lay down their lives against you and against anybody for socialism and for communism?  “Oh,” you say, “they’ve all been fed opium, they’re all drunk.”  That’s what a paper might say; but that’s not so!  There are men who lie back of those moving, marching millions who are dedicated men!  They are committed to a tremendous thing!

What is that tremendous thing?  I’m going to show you.  We had one here in America, stuck him in the federal penitentiary in Atlanta, Georgia, and he died not long after he was liberated.  He was a socialist, and a rabid and a fanatical socialist.  Did you ever hear—because he died in your lifetime—did you ever hear of Eugene V. Debs?  Eugene Debs.  All right, they stuck him in a federal penitentiary in Atlanta, Georgia.  He was the leader of the famous Pullman strike.  He was a pacifist.  He was against war.  They put him in the penitentiary.  In that penitentiary the lives of the prisoners were changed.  And the warden went up to Sam Moore, and said to Sam Moore, an embittered man facing a life sentence, “What changed your life?”  And that embittered, hardened criminal replied, “Gene Debs, he was the only Christ I ever knew.”

In the Atlanta penitentiary, he drew up his creed, and I read it to you: “While there is a lower class, I am in it.  While there is a criminal element, I am of it.  While there is a soul in prison, I am not free.”

How do they fool the people of Indonesia?  How do they fool the people of India?  How do they fool the people of China?  How do they fool the people of Indochina?  How do they capture some of the intellectuals of the world?  How do they pull into their orbit some of our very preachers?  I’ll tell you how and why: they are committed, some of them, the leaders, the men who wrought the philosophy, not the political battle men, but the men who write the books, and the men who achieve the philosophy, they are committed to a tremendous humanitarian ministry.  And they never tell their dupes about their police state.  They never tell their dupes of the awful concentration camps and the trips to Siberia, and the terrible tyranny of an awful dictatorship.  And your intellectual says all of that is a passing phase, and pretty soon we’ll have nothing but peace and goodness back again.

I told you, it is a Christian heresy.  Who are the people that ought to be saying, “While there is a soul in prison, I am not free”?  Who are the people that ought to be saying, “As long as there is a poor man starving and in need in this city, I’m with him”?  Who is it ought to be saying that?  You say a communist; you say the socialist—no!  I say the child of God, the Christian who follows the Lord Jesus Christ; we ought to be saying those words.  We ought to be championing the oppressed, uncounted masses of the poor and outcast in India.  We ought to be ministering in the foreground and in the van to the great subjected peoples of the world.  It ought to be the ministry of Christ!  But instead of that we’ve gone, I don’t know what.  And so the socialist and the communist steps in, and he says, “I am your hope.  I am your champion.  I am your savior.  I am your liberator.” And he’s a liar!  He leads his people into death, into tyranny, into dictatorship, into totalitarianism, into destruction.  He leads them into hell, he does!  But the Christian who has the Word of life, and ought to have the spirit of Christ, he’s doing something else.

O Lord, O Lord!  May the Lord forgive us as He judges us for our sins [1 John 1:9].  May the Lord help us as a people to champion the lost of the world, to pour our lives into the ministry of Christ.

“It is the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, and if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His” [Romans 8:9].  The spirit of compassion: it’s a care to us whether people are saved or lost.  It’s a burden to our hearts whether people know God or not.  It’s a care to us whether the orphan has a home or not, whether a man has a job or not, whether the poor are fed or not, whether the nations of the world are oppressed or not.  It’s a care to us; and the spirit of Christ is one of compassion, of care.  It matters.  It matters.  We’re sensitive to it and we offer heart and hand and life to help.  That’s what it is to have the spirit of Christ in your soul.

Well, I’ve got to quit.  Let’s sing our song. On the first stanza of the first word, on the first note, would you step into that aisle and down here to the front and by my side, “Pastor, today, best I know how I give my life to the Lord Jesus; I give it to Him.  I give it to Him.  I trust in Him [Ephesians 2:8].  I want to put my life in the fellowship of this precious and blessed church.”  While we make appeal, would you come?  In that topmost balcony, clear to the back seat, somebody you, anywhere, anywhere, on the first note of the first stanza, would you come?  Would you come?  “Pastor, here’s my hand; I have given my heart and my life to God” [Romans 10:9-10].  While we sing this song, would you make it now?  Would you make it now?  While we stand and while we sing.

THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS

ROMANS 8:2,9B NO DATE <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]>

The spirit of defeat, carnality, death in the old life in flesh. A new spirit, a different spirit, a life-giving, life-sustaining spirit in Christ Jesus. The Holy Spirit of life, resurrection, triumph dwelling in the Christian.

<![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 1. A different spirit. Luke 9:51-56. 2. The spirit makes the difference. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> It is the Spirit of Christ in our lives. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Born of the Holy Spirit. Baptized of the Holy Spirit. Luke 3:22. Filled with the Holy Spirit. Luke 4:1. Led by the Holy Spirit. Luke 4:1. Raised from the dead. Romans 1:4; 8:11. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Jesus Himself could only work, be, do according as He was empowered, endured by the Holy Spirit. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Our admonition. Ephesians 5:18 “be filled with the Holy Sprit.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Romans 8:9 “if not Spirit of Christ, none of his.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> The Spirit of Christ. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> His humility, holiness, courage, dedication, gladness, joy, enthusiasm, reverence..so many things characteristics. Chose these three. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 1. His faith. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Prayer of Paul, Ephesians 3:17 “that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Gospel of Paul, Ephesians 2:8 “for by grace are ye saved thru faith.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Prayer – someone to hear. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Works – when step on water, would sustain Him. When broke bread, would feed 5,000. When spoke to dead, would live again. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Death – would be raised. Committed himself. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> He made the unseen universe visible, audible. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Compare: Paul in II Timothy 1:10 “brought life, immortality, to light.” Like a radio, TV can pluck out of the air…there, real, though unseen. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> The life of the Christian, the life of faith. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Only an animal existence without it. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Trusting God, depending upon God. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> The reason for the sorrows, woes…trusting God for it. The ultimate outcome of children…trusting God for it. The death we all face…trusting God for it. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Eugene V. Debs (b.1855) <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Socialist, pacifist, sentenced to ten years in the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary for his opposition to World War I. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> In the prison, made even the jailers love him. For many prisoners he changed the whole course of their life. When the Warden asked Sam Moore, an embittered Negro facing life imprisonment, for the secret of the change that Debs had wrought in him, the Negro very simply replied: “He was the only Jesus Christ I ever knew.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> (Compare: The story, in prison, Debs holding the Negro boy in his arms, sick. In his lap…) <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> In Atlanta Penitentiary, drew up his creed, <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> “While there is a lower class I am in it; While there is a criminal element I am of it; While there is a soul in prison, I am not free.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 2. His obedience. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Yielding to the Father. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Romans 15:3 “Christ pleased not himself.” Hebrews 5:8 “Tho he was a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> As a child, subject to his parents, Luke 2:5. As the Savior, “not my will, thine be done.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Our surrender must be complete. Matthew 16:24,25, is the fundamental law of following Christ. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> 3. His compassion. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Human need moves his heart. Felt it in his soul. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Matthew 9:36,33; 8:17 “himself took our infirmities, bore our sicknesses.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> His most beautiful parable. Good Samaritan. Prodigal Son. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> His gracious ministry. Blind – leper – weeping over lot of John. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> His sweetest invitation. Matthew 11:28-30. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Socialism, communism: “A Christian Heresy.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> The spirit makes the difference. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> The all-important thing about life is its spirit. Everything else is accidental, transitory. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Men of heroic spirit have lived in a cave, log cabin, dungeon. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Men of slavish spirit have lived in a palace. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Life must be judged by its spirit.   a. Napoleon. Not an unmixed curse. Did many great, splendid things. Code of laws of immense value. System of public improvements. Noble deeds, great sayings. But the spirit of the man selfish, ambitious. Compare: Before battle of Leigozip. “A million men will be lost.” What the loss of a million men if only achieve my ambition to rule the world.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> b. George Washington. In nothing so able, brilliant, dramatic, flashing. But the spirit of the man a benediction. <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> Compare: The story of the English visitor to the Congress: “Which one is General Washington?” “When congress goes to pray, the one who kneels is George Washington.” <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> The hope and promise of our world in its spirit…of what profit would blue-prints, charters, conferences, concordat, treaties, unless motivated by the right spirit? <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]> <![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]>