"And that He died for all, that the living might live no longer to themselves, but to Him who, for their sakes, died and rose again. I therefore, from henceforth, view no man carnally; yea, though once my view of Christ was carnal, yet now it is no longer carnal. Whosoever then is in Christ is a new creation: his old being has passed away, and behold, all has become new. But all comes from God, for He it is who reconciled me to Himself by Jesus Christ" (2 Corinthians 5:15-18).
"For all who are led by God's Spirit, they alone are the sons of God. For you have not received a spirit of bondage, that you should go back again to the state of slavish fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption wherein we cry unto God saying, Father" (Romans 8:14,15).
"But your life is not in the flesh, if indeed the Spirit of God be dwelling in you; and if any man has not the Spirit of Christ, he is not Christ's" (Romans 8:9). "...if you live after the flesh, you are doomed to die..." (Romans 8:13).
"For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world; and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith" (1 John 5:4). "We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not" (1 John 5:18).
Faith knows nothing of carnality. Faith has its beginning and its end in God. Man's trouble is that he looks at himself and this is death. Only as we walk in faith are we in life. If a man can make a place for carnality, he can make a place for sin. Many have done this, and this is not a place of faith.
Carnal ways are only an expression of self. "Self" can only exist when a man is not in Christ. Again and again we must say: only faith can walk in God. Anything less than faith wants to educate self, and can never know God. This educated self only tells us about God with words that have no life. Death to self was the only thing that would satisfy God's heart, because God had passed judgment on sin. God judged all of Adam's race at Calvary. No expression of the old man can find a place in the new creation. Carnality has no place in a Christian's life. Why does man think he can bring darkness into that which is light?
If anyone continually looks at himself, he will continually try to work things out himself. But did not God say that He would put His laws in our hearts and write them in our minds? Our life and knowledge then is Christ.
Always keep in mind that the church is not just a group of people coming together in their own strength, but the body of Christ coming together in the power of the Spirit. Carnality has no place in the church. The church is only the church as it is connected to the Head, and the church is complete in Him. Whether a person is in the body of Christ or not is another thing. We know this by the fruits of his or her life, and by the witness of the Spirit.
Darkness (sin) has no expression in the body of Christ, the church. If there is lukewarmness, God removes it. If a group is not moving in the Spirit and has need of faith, righteousness to hide their nakedness, and the anointing to see spiritually, then we find Christ standing on the outside. We must hear Him and open our heart's door to Him. Then He will come in and we shall know His sweet fellowship.
We cannot be more or move in more than faith will allow. Each member of the body of Christ can be no more than what God has designed. God's real glory is revealed when we are obedient to what the Spirit is revealing. The sons of God are those who are led by the Spirit. "He hath perfected forever them that are sanctified" (Hebrews 10:14). "Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering..." (Hebrews 10:23).
To walk in life is to walk in knowing God, because life is experiencing God. How can we get back to the walk of faith, if we see that we have turned aside? The only way is to repent. Jesus speaks this to the churches: "Repent, and do the first works..." (Revelation 2:5). "Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly..." (Revelation 2:16). Repentance gives light to our pathway. So many are sorry they got caught, but there is never a real godly sorrow which works repentance unto life. Without repentance we cannot see God.
"Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?" (Romans 6:16). Obedience speaks of action. Action is our will active in God's will. Our righteousness is Christ, so we must have faith to please Him. We must abide in Him.
"For ye are all the children of God by faith in Jesus Christ" (Galatians 3:26). "Now the works of the flesh are manifest...they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God" (Galatians 5:19-21). "For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting" (Galatians 6:8).
God's salvation is much more than man can understand, because it is something man has not experienced before. Men keep on selling God's salvation short, defining it as less than what God says it is. They would rather not believe what God is saying. They would rather give their own interpretation of what God says than take seriously the literal meaning of His Word.
But what does God say and how can we know what God means? We can never know until we do what we know He is demanding right now. God's salvation is still in God's hands, and what man does or says or interprets of God's Word can never change God or His salvation.
The new and living way which God has made for us is through His flesh. He has revealed His love to us in the Son, thus taking away our shame and giving us His life. With that life comes the ability to be what God has purposed for us to be. We don't try to be Christians. Rather, in the words of the apostle Paul:
"I have been 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" (Galatians 2:20).