Tuesday, November 1, 2005

Deeper Into the Mysteries

Been reading Mystics and Miracles: True Stories of Lives Touched By God by Bert Ghezzi. Here are a few excerpts from the Introduction which really light me up:
We get the word mystic from a Greek root that means “mystery.” A mystic is a person who is “introduced into the mysteries.” Broadly speaking, all Christians are mystics. We believe that by faith we are initiated into the mysteries of Christ’s death and resurrection. But most Christians are not mystics in the technical sense because we have yet to penetrate the Christian mysteries in depth. That’s what sets a true mystic apart from the crowd….

Why are the mystic’s lives marked by so many miracles? Why do they experience so many visions, healings, and other supernatural events? I have some thoughts on that question.

First, mystics are lovers. They love God with their heart and soul, and they love people with every ounce of their being. When they put their love into action, signs and wonders flow….

Second, if you look at it from another angle, you could say that mystics do not work miracles at all. You could argue that not even those who produce the greatest miracles are actually wonder-workers. They just draw near and stay close to Christ, who is the real miracle worker. The mystics are intimate friends of Jesus, and their personal relationship with him is so secure that they can ask him for favors and expect to receive them….

Third, God grants the mystics a foretaste of heaven and allows the supernatural realm to penetrate their earthly lives.
What Bert Ghezzi is describing is, to my way of thinking, normal Christianity. No, it is not average Christianity (the way things usually are), but the way Christians are supposed to live — fully in love with God and with people (Matthew 22:36-40), intimate friends with Jesus (John 15:9-17), always allowing the supernatural realm to penetrate our earthly lives (Matthew 6:10; 18:18-20). In the Great Commission, Jesus gave us great authority, saying,
And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover. (Mark 16:17-18)
If we know the Lord Jesus Christ, believing on His name, then these things ought to be following us. If they are not, there is no condemnation on us. We just need to enter deeper into the mysteries* of who Jesus is, what He came to do, what His cross and resurrection are all about, and who we are in Him.

We need to experience more of His love at work in us, and let it flow through us to others. We need to live in our new Holy Spirit birth from above (John 3:3), walk in our heavenly citizenship (Philippians 3:20), and exercise the authority of where we are seated in Christ Jesus at the right hand of the Father (Ephesians 2:6).

The deeper we live in the mysteries of the Lord Jesus Christ, the more our lives will bring forth a foretaste of heaven on earth.

* In the Bible, a mystery is a secret — not one that God is keeping from us, but one that God is revealing to all His people.