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Text Sermons : Hans R. Waldvogel : God Manifest in the Flesh (“Christ liveth in me”)

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Selected Verses:

I Timothy 3:16. And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.

Galatians 2:20. I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
Opening:

Jesus in the flesh disappeared, and then suddenly He appeared again in the hearts of His disciples as the Fountain of Life, as their righteousness, their indwelling new man. And that is the Spirit of truth—it’s Christ Himself. He had to go through that dark valley. He had to break through the veil to make the way open for every human being to be reconciled to God. And it’s a great mystery that Jesus had to appear in the flesh—“God manifest in the flesh,” God speaking to us by His Son, speaking His own Word. The Word that was God came and dwelt among us and quickened humanity.

Now He says, “The Spirit of truth, when He is come will reprove the world of sin.” And that sin is the sin of unbelief. And as Edwin said, that faith must come from the word: “by which ye are born again,” “the Word of life.” What does Peter say? “The word of the Lord endureth forever by which word ye are born again.” When the word is preached and understood, it becomes seed that brings forth fruit.


Selected Quotes:

I must believe that Jesus Christ has come to live out His own life within me, and make room for Him. And if I believe that—if I believe that Jesus is all the Bible says, why, He will lead me to perfection. “He, the great Shepherd of the sheep, whom God brought again from the dead,” will work in me “that which is well-pleasing in His sight, making me perfect in every good work to do His will.” And all my foolishness, and all my staggering along the way has ceased. And now, He takes over—He takes charge.



Just think what would happen today if every one of us could honestly and truly believe that Jesus Christ is the fountain of life within me. It doesn’t mean immediately that you’re going to raise the dead, or open the eyes of the blind. But it means that you have Him, that you delight yourself in Him, that He is able to reveal Himself in the little duties of your daily life. And it will be no more you but it’ll be Christ. And maybe you wouldn’t have a single gift, and people wouldn’t see anything extraordinary in you, but you would see something extraordinary. You would draw from that fountain. It would be Jesus and not yourself.

And when Jesus here teaches His disciples to pray in His name, He says, “I say not that I will pray for you…” He speaks of that mystery, which so few people apprehend. You can almost always tell when people get the light. You can tell by their praying: they stop this baby talk that so often disgraces our prayer meetings, and they begin to talk definitely, and personally. And they talk to God as if God was their Father. It’s Christ in them. Christ somehow has come to be revealed inside of them, and they are no more praying—it’s Christ that prays in them. And He always addresses the Father, and He does it with a definiteness and with a faith that allows of no question mark.

I remember how Mrs. Robinson used to pray. She would stand, and instead of hanging up her family wash, she would say, “I ask, Father, so-and-so.” And that was that, and then it would happen. That’s “the prayer of faith.” “Ye shall ask in My name.”



To see Christ is an act of the Holy Ghost. It means that the Spirit of Christ has come to dwell within you, to unite Himself with your spirit. “He that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.” That’s the truth. The truth is that I am not dead anymore. “Reckon yourselves dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God.” That’s the truth.



We were under the law, and the law was our schoolmaster. And we were no better than slaves until faith came! But now faith has come. What is faith? True faith always relates to that indwelling of Christ. True faith always opens your eyes to see the truth. Oh, hallelujah! How long have I been a slave? How long have I struggled with myself and struggled with mine enemies. But I struggle no more: “the Lord is my light and my salvation. Hallelujah, it’s done. What the law could not do, God did.



The reason we haven’t grown more fully is because perhaps we have not been “planted by the rivers of water.” We don’t study that word. We take a little morsel here and a little morsel there, and we run off with it and we please ourselves.



Nobody is stupid by birth. We’re stupid by choice. We choose to be stupid—we choose to be dumb instead of choosing “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” And when I choose the fear of the Lord, I will want to get acquainted with Jesus. He has come to dwell with me.



They had to sit by the bedside of Lazarus and hold his hand, and feel his pulse, and see the life ebb away, and see the agony, and see him writhing on his bed of pain, and then give up the ghost. And then they had to go to the funeral. That isn’t an easy thing, when everybody cries and everybody weeps—and then to see that poor boy laid away. And all your praying to Jesus availed nothing. And then when He came, he had lain in the grave four days already. It all was necessary for them to learn that one lesson—not a lesson about their own faith, but a lesson about their own almighty Jesus. And those are the lessons Jesus Christ is striving to teach you and me day by day, because He is today “the life-giving Spirit.”


Illustrations:

An example of outwardness. “So many people think of Jesus as outside of them, and they’ll talk of ‘having a vision.’ … Lots of ungodly people have visions. … That doesn’t make people spiritual.” (from 7:02)

Examples of some falling away from a life of faith, and others who lived by faith. “God asked them to live by faith… It was so much easier to join an organization, and to get a job and get a salary.” (from 16:25)





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