Monday, June 4, 2012

“The Believer’s Self Perception” Part 9

    The high view and the low view of ourselves, as prescribed by Scripture, presents an interesting challenge to our thinking as born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.

    How do we balance, or properly coordinate viewing ourselves in the affirmative terms of being new creatures in union with the Spirit of the Lord Jesus, while concurrently acknowledging the ongoing presence and challenge of sin in our fleshly members? How do we rejoice in the former without become self-absorbed, and confess the latter without become morbidly self-loathing?

    Only God can answer this question. "The darkness and the light are both alike to Thee" (Psalm 139:12).  Many issues of the Christian life call us to view matters from two vantage points that may seem almost contradictory to our minds.  God as one, and yet existing in three Persons.  Grace given as a perfectly free gift, but works always accompanying a genuine reception of God’s favor.  Our Lord as sovereign, but angels and man as free and responsible.  The Divine and the human perfectly united in the Lord Jesus, said by theologians “to be as much God as if He were not man, and as much man as if He were not God.”  The list could go on and on of truths that we must seek to understand as best we can, but which ultimately demand that we fall before the Lord in acknowledgement of our blindness and His vision: “O Lord God, Thou knowest!” (Ezekiel 37:3).

    This is a blessed thing.  Regarding our current consideration, the high view and the low view drive us to our Heavenly Father in the admission that He must guide us in our understanding of ourselves.  We must personally relate to Him in order to be sure that both truths find their proper place in our understanding and practice.  As the Psalmist declared of God’s dual doctrinal and personal illumination, “In Thy light shall we see light” (Psalm 36:9).  That is, we must seek both the fact and the face of God in our pursuit of truth.  It is not enough to emphasize doctrine without living experience, nor can living experience be trusted without doctrine.  In the Christ-filled and enlightened heart, both aspects of God’s truth fuel our worship “in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24).  We seek the living Word in the written Word, and the written Word informs, evaluates and tests our experience of the living Word.

    Only God can enable both the high view and the low view of ourselves so that we walk in confident faith and honest humility.  This is just as we need it to be because, again, such truth drives us to seek God personally for leadership and understanding.  He will faithfully respond to our request for light, and we will grow in a walk with Him that demands we affirm both our strength in Christ, and our weakness in the flesh.

“When I am weak, then am I strong.”
(II Corinthians 12:10)

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