October 19, 2019

Freed to be Joined to Christ as our Husband

From eternity past God’s intention has been that we the believers would be joined to Christ as our Husband, as typified by Eve being joined to Adam (Rom. 5:14; Gen. 2:18, 21-23; Isa. 54:5; Eph. 5:25-27). God created man to be dependent on Him and to live in union with Him, taking God as his life, content, and Husband. However, when man ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, the “old man” was produced, who was independent of God and who usurped God’s position in relationship to man (Gen. 2:9, 16-17; 3:4-6; cf. Rom. 6:6). As revealed in Romans 7:1-4, man then became his own “husband.” Man “married” his overdeveloped old man instead of Christ, who is signified by the tree of life (Gen. 2:9; John 1:4; 15:1). Man thus left his spiritual standing as a female and took up the husband’s position of headship (1 Cor. 11:3). In this way the old man took Christ’s rightful position and fundamentally prevented man’s God-ordained marriage to Christ.

To expose the true nature of our old man as a usurping husband, God gave the Mosaic law to man, referred to as the “law regarding the husband” in Romans 7:2. Created man was held in bondage by the law because of the old man, who is fallen, totally independent of God, and incapable of fulfilling the righteous requirement of the law. When Paul came to this conclusion, he could only exclaim, “Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me…? Thanks be to God, through Jesus Christ our Lord!” (vv. 24-25a).

A marvelous fact is stated in Romans 6:6: “Our old man has been crucified with Him.” Because we were included in Christ’s death, our old husband was terminated with Him on the cross (Gal. 2:20). This has broken our marriage union with the old man and has simultaneously released us from the bondage of the “law regarding the husband” since “the law lords it over a man as long as he lives” (7:1-2). Furthermore, through Christ’s death and resurrection we are regenerated and return to our proper standing as a female before God, having been released from our old husband and the law that bound us that we might be joined to Christ (1 Pet. 1:3; Rom. 7:4). Praise the Lord that He has freed us from the law and our old husband, the old man, that we might be joined to Him, our new Husband! This marriage union, ordained by God from eternity, is the deepest and most satisfying romance in the universe, existing in the depths of our being where we are mingled with Him as one spirit (1 Cor. 6:16b-17; S.S. 1:2-4; 4:10; Eph. 5:25-32).

Further Reading:

Witness Lee, Life-Study of Romans, Message 12 (NookKindleiBooksPrint).

Watchman Nee, The Normal Christian Life, Chapter 12 (NookKindlePrint).

Holy Bible Recovery Version, all verses mentioned in this post and their corresponding footnotes (NookKindleiBooksPrint).

(Most references in the Further Reading can also be viewed on www.ministrybooks.org.)

2 thoughts on “Freed to be Joined to Christ as our Husband

  1. The nature of the fall, according to the extract above, is not the issue, merely of corruption, and sin, but of the satanic reproduction of Satan’s sinful nature in the self and flesh of man, both of which actually and experientially comprise the “old man” according to Romans 6-7. Previously, man’s personality according to God’s creation in Genesis 2:7 was to be a vessel (Rom. 9:22-23), whereby man according to his free will in direct consistency and coordination with the divine will (Phil. 2:13) would choose and enjoy God as life (as signified by the tree of life), and thereby man’s personality and being, filled with God in Christ, would be of perfect oneness with the God who ordained in His economy, in Christ as the Spirit to be man’s eternal life. This is God in Christ as the Spirit, becoming our real Husband, our Head, and we His Body, His Bride!

    But due to the fall, we now trace in the book of Romans, its effects such that man’s fallen and sinful personality, in rebellious oneness with Satan as sin and death, is thoroughly satanic, even devilish, as revealed in Paul’s gospel, in Romans 1:18-3:20. But the salvation that begins for the believers in Christ in the justification by faith revealed in Romans 3:21-4:25, is not based on any vindication of this old man, but is rather the response to the revelation of the satanic old man revealed by Paul in Romans 1:18-3:20, both on the part of God to gain us in His complete salvation, and our awakening to our need to be completely delivered and saved from being identified with Satan, sin and death in the old man.

    Romans 5 reveals to us that this justification by faith, leads us to stand in the grace, that according to the motivation of the love of God in the Holy Spirit, is simply and superabundantly, the “much more” enjoyment of Christ as life, that we become, transformatively, beings reigning in life, in spiritual identification with Christ our Grace, who reigns in us and with us unto eternal life! Romans 6 reveals what this development of life in causing us to have an entirely renewed living, walk and ministry, growing in the likeness of His resurrection, even as such growth is based upon our having grown in the likeness of His death, our remaining in the death of His cross, in the eternal spiritual reality of His death signified by our baptism.

    It is here that we experientially approach Romans 7, for with the prevailing, reigning vision of life in Romans 6, with the life in full transference into Christ out of Adam, the old Adam in Romans 6, with the renewed understanding regarding our very person and personality, who is intending and acting in our daily living. Here the old man is experientially discovered as a “husband”, a person, even as “sin” operating in the flesh, in the outset of Romans 7, refusing to yield to the full experience of the cross, that our real Husband, Christ as our saving life and all, would be hindered in gaining full ground in our inner being (the full ground of which is fully developed in Romans 8-16). Where our regenerated spirit mingled with the Lord Spirit should take the lead, with Christ as the Husband, in the actual experiences of those in Romans 7, the old man, especially the flesh directs our living. The conflict between the law of the mind and the law of the sin and of death described in much of Romans 7, subjectively evidences that our “old husband”, the old man is still very much experientially in force, and we do not take Christ as the Husband in our spirit.

    The inclination of the natural mind to attempt to keep the law reveals the true standing (Rom. 8:7), the actual personality that characterizes our being and living daily – i.e. it is the old man operating in the lusts of the deceit (Eph. 4:22), thinking it is possible to keep God’s law when the flesh is so evil, and far removes the experiential need to turn to Christ as the Husband in our mingled spirit. The subjective failures of the law of our natural mind versus the law of sin and death in our flesh, reveals to us the need to place the old man into the subjective actuality of the cross, into His death (Rom. 6:6) according to the Spirit of life in our spirit (8:13), so that we would live according to the Spirit, fully activating in our living, in an unceasing exercise of spirit, the law of the Spirit of life (Rom. 8:2-6).

    But the unceasing operation of this law of the Spirit of life in Romans 8 unto the Body life in Romans 12-16 is fundamentally dependent on taking Christ as our Husband, according to the death of the old man through the crucified Christ Jesus, and in the prevailing life of Christ in our spirit according to the resurrected and ascended Christ Jesus! We need to realize that Christ as our life must fully become Christ our Husband in our unceasing experiences in spirit, holding Him as the Head in all things, in the reality of the one Body of Christ

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