“But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” (1 Corinthians 2:14 NKJV).
Although many believers today claim to be under the New Covenant, yet they continue to serve, worship, and walk with God with the mindsets of the Old Covenant.
Having started the Christian life in the Spirit (by faith alone in Christ and His finished work), they are now striving to continue in the flesh (by their performance or good works).
The Scripture commands us to continue in Christ (by faith) just as we have received Him.
6 As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him,
7 rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. (NKJV).
It is sad but true that many believers today who claim to have received eternal redemption and adoption as sons into God’s family simply by grace alone and through faith alone in Christ are now passionately seeking and striving to earn, merit, deserve and receive God’s favour and blessings by their self-righteousness, performance, or good works.
This is utter foolishness!
Apostle Paul sharply rebuked the believers at Galatia for this same foolishness – seeking to earn, merit, deserve or receive God’s favour and blessings by their works.
1 O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified?
2 This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
3 Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh? (NKJV).
It is simply ignorance or foolishness to be passionately seeking and striving to earn, deserve or merit what has been graciously bestowed upon you as a gift.
The Scripture amply reveals that salvation (redemption, justification, sanctification, healing, deliverance, prosperity, etc.) is purely the gift of God to all mankind in Christ and through Christ.
Salvation is available to all men purely by grace alone and through faith alone in Christ!
8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,
9 not of works, lest anyone should boast. (NKJV).
6 And if by grace, then it is no longer of works; otherwise grace is no longer grace. But if it is of works, it is no longer grace; otherwise work is no longer work. (NKJV).
Therefore, seeking or striving to earn, merit, deserve or receive God’s love, acceptance, favour or blessing by your self-righteousness, performance, or good works is simply an act of pride or unbelief. It is belittling, despising or disregarding the finished work of Jesus!
In the first part of this piece we aptly presented from God’s Word the awesome truth that the believers in Christ are already blessed with everything that pertains to life and godliness.
The Scripture amply teaches and affirms the truth that God has blessed the believers in Christ with every blessing – spiritual, emotional, physical, financial or material (Rom. 8:16-17; Gal. 3:7-29, 4:6-7; Eph. 1:3, 18; 2 Pet. 1:2-4; Phil. 1:6).
The born-again believers lack nothing good in Christ!
1 Corinthians 3:
21 Therefore let no one boast in men. For all things are yours:
22 whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas, or the world or life or death, or things present or things to come–all are yours.
23 And you are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s. (NKJV).
Unfortunately, many believers are being defrauded, exploited, and robbed of their possessions in many churches today by spiritual con men behind pulpits who sweet-talk, persuade and motivate them to tithe, give or sow all kinds of ridiculous financial or material seeds in order to impress, motivate, manipulate, persuade, or compel God to bestow or release His favour and blessing upon them.
This is contrary to the New Covenant!
The New Covenant believers, unlike the Old Covenant saints, don’t need to impress, motivate, manipulate, persuade or compel God to love, accept, favour or bless them by doing any kind of good works or by giving any kind of offerings. Why?
Because under the New Covenant God needs no motivation or persuasion to love, accept, favour or bless anyone!
The New Covenant believers are already loved, accepted, favoured and blessed by God in Christ Jesus. This is according to God’s pleasure. This is what God chose to do. This is not contingent upon our works, but upon the finished work of Jesus Christ.
Paul aptly states this truth.
3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ.
4 Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.
5 God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.
6 So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son. (NLT).
The New Covenant believers are only expected to do good works and give to God as an act of worship to God, out of love for God, and according to the leading of the Holy Spirit, but not under any compulsion, or as an obligation, or as an incentive to motivate God to bless them, or according to the stipulations or regulations of the Mosaic Law (1 Cor. 16:1-2; 2 Cor. 8:12, 9:7; Gal. 5:18).
If all believers are already blessed with everything in Christ, why then are many believers today not enjoying and walking in God’s blessing – spiritually, emotionally, financially, or materially?
Because they don’t know how to tap into, draw from, and appropriate God’s blessings available to them in Christ!
How then can you as a believer begin to tap into, draw from, and appropriate God’s blessings that are yours in Christ?
First, recognize and believe that you are blessed in Christ:
Many believers today are not walking in God’s blessing simply because they are still seeking everywhere and striving by every means to get the blessings they already got in Christ.
Until you are fully convinced beyond any iota of doubt that God has given you all things you need to live a godly life in Christ, you will not quit seeking and striving to earn God’s favour and blessings by your works.
You must first acknowledge, recognize and believe that you are already blessed with every blessing (spiritual, emotional, physical, financial or material blessing) you will ever need in this life through your union with Christ before you can begin to walk in the blessings or see the manifestations of the blessings in your life (Rom. 8:16-17; Gal. 3:7-29, 4:6-7; Eph. 1:3, 18; 2 Pet. 1:2-4; Phil. 1:6).
Many believers are not experiencing and enjoying spiritual, emotional, physical, financial or material blessings because they are waiting for and counting upon their natural senses to confirm to them that they have got the blessings before they will believe that they have got the blessings in Christ.
The truth is this, whether you see, feel, touch, taste or handle God’s blessings in the natural realm or not; you are blessed with every blessing in Christ.
Your born-again spirit has all the blessings of God. God’s inheritance is in you (Eph. 1:18). It is in a spiritual form, so your natural senses cannot discern, recognize or perceive that you have the blessings (Eph. 1:3).
Your born-again spirit is rich in love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, and faithfulness even though you may seem to be emotionally bankrupt.
Therefore, stop checking with your emotions or natural senses, or looking out for tangible changes in your emotions or situations before you agree with God that you are eternally blessed with every blessing in Christ (Rom. 3:3-4).
Second, by renewing your mind:
The blessings of God residing in your born-again spirit cannot flow out and manifest in the natural realm (in your emotions and situations) without passing through your mind.
Your mind is the gateway for the transition of your spiritual blessings to emotional blessings, financial blessings, physical or material blessings. Therefore, if your mind is not inclined, open or receptive to your born-again spirit, the blessings in your spirit cannot flow out or manifest in your body, emotions, or situations.
The truth is that your physical mind is naturally opposed, closed or unreceptive to the things of the Spirit of God. Your mind has been trained by the old man (your former self) to rationalise, judge, doubt, refuse or reject spiritual things from God.
The Scripture affirms this truth!
1 Corinthians 2:
14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. (NKJV).
7 For the mind-set of the flesh is hostile to God because it does not submit to God’s law, for it is unable to do so. (HCSB).
Many believers today are not seeing the physical manifestations of the spiritual blessings present in their born-again spirits because of their natural, carnal or unrenewed mind.
If you fail to reset or renew your mind according to the truths of God’s Word, it will continue to rationalise, judge, doubt, refuse and reject every spiritual blessing in your spirit, thereby hindering its outflow, outpouring, or manifestation in the natural realm where you need to enjoy them.
6 For the mind-set of the flesh is death, but the mind-set of the Spirit is life and peace. (HCSB).
2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. (NKJV).
Third, by cooperating or agreeing with God:
Even though God has blessed you with every spiritual blessing in Christ and these blessings are available in your recreated or born-again spirit, yet you may not see the physical manifestations of these blessings if you fail to cooperate or agree with God.
How do you cooperate or agree with God for the physical manifestations of your spiritual blessings?
Firstly, by choosing to believe and accept spiritual realities over physical realities.
While you don’t deny your present or prevailing circumstances, yet you must not embrace, surrender, submit or succumb to them if you want to see God’s blessings manifest in your life (Heb. 6:12).
Secondly, by confessing and declaring the truths of God’s Word in spite of contrary natural facts or circumstances.
You activate, appropriate, draw out and release the spiritual blessing in your spirit by your words, confessions or declarations in accordance with the truths of God’s Word.
Though God has blessed your born-again spirit with everything you need in life, yet if you fail to agree with God by speaking or confessing according to God’s good promises concerning you in His Word, you will hinder the outflow, outpouring, or manifestation of God’s blessings in your life (Mark 11:22-24, Heb. 11:1-3, 2 Cor. 4:13).
Thirdly, by taking steps and actions inspired and directed by the Holy Spirit.
It takes more than mere believing and confessing that you are blessed in Christ to see the manifestations of God’s blessings in your life.
You will need to work out the blessings inside of you by taking definite steps or actions of faith inspired and directed by the Holy Spirit (Jam. 2:17-20, Rom. 4:16-21).
Beloved, the blessings you are passionately seeking for and striving to earn by your good works are already yours in Christ – in your born-again spirit.
Therefore, quit seeking everywhere for what you already have and stop striving to earn by your self-righteousness, performance or good works what God has freely bestowed upon you in Christ. Rather, begin to renew your mind and cooperate with God for the physical manifestations of God’s blessings in your life.
Prayer: My Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for loving, accepting, favouring and blessing me completely and eternally in Christ. God’s blessings are present in my spirit. I will begin to see the manifestation of God’s blessings in every sphere of my life, in Jesus’ name. Amen.