Debie Misir: May 25, 2010

The Abundant Life

“I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10).

These are the words of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The words that every Christian, professed or otherwise are holding on to today as the sum total of all of God’s promises for the “Born Again” Believer in this life and in eternity….and so it is. Yet many who hold fast to this promise cannot seem to access it and their Christianity deteriorates slowly to “a form of Godliness…with no power” (2 Timothy 3:5). They become religious, going through the motions of what they think God requires of us, but not experiencing the new birth and abundant life that the Lord died to give us. Instead they live defeated human lives full of struggles, woes, and disappointments. Why is this?

Could it be that the Christian today cannot truly understand what “life more abundantly” means, amongst all the prosperity and grace teachings they are exposed to today via the media, many churches, and various “Bible Scholars”? You better believe it! The Christian today is defeated purely because of lack of true knowledge of this one all-encompassing promise of God. They do not know that the abundant life Jesus Christ promised is the very life of God in us – a life of peace beyond understanding, joy unspeakable, perfect love, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, long-suffering, self-control, supernatural power, wisdom, knowledge with right understanding, a sound mind, a forgiving and merciful heart, a giving nature etc, which is eternal and indestructible. A life which is implanted in us from the moment we first believed and received Christ as our Lord and Savior. This is NOT the same as the trivialized abundant life of material and physical super abundance that so many are preaching and teaching today. How then can we expect the Christian to partake of something that he is totally ignorant of?

You may ask how is it possible to be given abundant life, and not know that we have it. Beloved it is very possible to be “born again”, yet never understand the abundant life you have and thus never tapping into it and experiencing it. One person explained it this way, and I will summarize. A very rich man was walking down a very poor neighborhood one day when he noticed a homeless person rummaging through garbage cans for his meal. He was moved with compassion and thought no one should live like that. He purposed within himself to help this person by going to his bank and creating an account and depositing one million dollars in the name of the homeless man whom he researched. He then told a clerk to go and inform the homeless man. The clerk never went. Now the homeless man became a millionaire that same day, but continued to live the life of homeless man; a life of lack, suffering, discomfort, hunger and pain simply because he was ignorant of the fact that He was now a millionaire and did not have to live this way. In our case, we are told of the abundant life by the word of God, but because of the worldly interpretation of this doctrine, many today cannot experience the true “abundant life.” They go through their Christian walk expecting a life where their every fleshly need and lustful desire is met – a life without pain, trials, sicknesses or physical lack; a life of material and physical abundance. They do not understand that the abundant life Jesus promised us is His very life in us. Paul says “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me “(Galatians 2:20). We have been crucified with Christ and we rose in Him. Our life is hid in Him and the life we are living is His life. Now if we are dead to self and Christ is living His life in us, how would He live it? How would He pray? Is Christ concerned with earthly things, or heavenly things? Did He save us and is sanctifying us only to let us continue to live fleshly lives after the old man Adam, or in order to make us a new man like Himself so we may live glorious, spiritual lives like He did?

Many are given the scripture “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us” (Ephesians 3:20) as proof of the “abundant life” they preach, but again this is taken in the context of the physical realm only. They do not yet understand that the instruction “think or ask” in Ephesians 3:20 must come from a regenerated mind - the mind of Christ, and not from a carnal mind - the mind of the first Adam. For if we ask from our carnal self, the very thing we are desperately asking for could be the same thing that will destroy us. For the carnal mind brings death, but the mind of Christ - the Spiritual mind, gives life. “For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” (Romans 8:6) The word of God says we have the mind of Christ. We are of the Spirit, and no more of the flesh. The blessings of the Lord for us are first Spiritual in nature. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.” (Ephesians 1:3). Yes, physical and material blessings will come, but we must not focus on them for when we do, we are living yet carnally and this will eventually bring death. Also we are robbing ourselves of that which is eternally stored up for us. The Lord himself instructs us, “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” (Matthew 6:19-21). What is this treasure the Lord is referring to that is eternal? It is the life of God in us and the effects of this life working in us and through us.

We should be so filled with the Holy Ghost - the life of our God - that the abundance of His life should outpour from the overflow. When Peter said to the beggar at the gate Beautiful "Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk." (Acts 3:6), he is pouring out of the abundant life He received from Christ; not silver and gold, but the power to save, heal and deliver – the Power of the Holy Spirit. The Lord Himself taught us the kingdom principles which must become flesh in us in order for us to live the abundant life. He said “For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” (Romans 14:17) This is the abundant life He promised.

Jesus Christ never promised a life of no suffering or pain, but instead promised to be the fourth man in the fire with you, protecting you, leading you through, and giving you the victory at the end. “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. “ (Isaiah 43:2). This is the abundant life. Paul says, “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” (Phillipians 4:12) For our souls to come into this place of utter satisfaction and contentment which clearly has nothing to do with our outward circumstances and situations but flows out of the life of Christ in us - This is the abundant life. When Paul says, “I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Cor. 10:12), he is demonstrating the abundant life. To be able to speak of severe personal trials and intense sufferings as “our light and momentary troubles.. achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” (2 Cor 4:17), Paul clearly had to have had a spiritual perspective, and not a carnal one. With this perspective, he overcame all trials and sufferings and he was victorious in every situation. Yes, he suffered the pangs of hunger, pain, sickness, and great persecution, but he rose above it all by accessing the abundant life within Him – the life of Christ – and looked only unto the glory at the end… and he rejoiced always in God His Savior. This is the abundant life we are promised in Christ.

With this life in us and this perspective, we can now begin to pray. Now the “think and ask” are according to the will of God and not according to self. Our prayer will now be centered on spiritual things: salvations of souls, sanctification of ourselves and others, the will of the Lord to be established on earth as it is in Heaven, and for the Lord to work obedience in our hearts through whatever means He desires. Our only goal now is to be in the center of God’s perfect will for our lives; loving Him and serving Him in whatever capacity He reveals to us. The abundant life then is a life consumed by Christ and His life being lived through us. “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10) then promises a deep spiritual dimension to life not physical abundance.

If you have never met the Lord Jesus and would like to surrender your life to him in divine exchange for His salvation and the abundant life He offers, simply pray…”Lord Jesus I repent of my sins and receive you as my Lord and Savior. I surrender my life to you in exchange for your Salvation and abundant life. Lord, come into my heart and take control of my life. Live your life through me that I may live the abundant life. Thank you Lord.”