Tag Archive | Lord Jesus Christ

The Higher Life

Set Affections Above

Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.

Colossians 3:2

Our Lord, Jesus Christ, calls the Christian to live a “higher” life.  This higher life is not some mystical experience, but a seeking of the things of Christ.  Our Lord always calls us to this higher place – away from earthly things, away from fleshly desires, away from our own way – to His way.

Isaiah 55:8-9 teaches us that our thoughts and our ways are not His thoughts and His ways.  He declares that as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are His ways and thoughts higher than ours.  Even in our feeble attempts to do good or to follow His law, we find that His ways are so much higher.  That higher place to which we are called cannot be produced by human effort.  Listen to the words of Jesus:  For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 5:20).

Take time to read Matthew 5:21-48 and you will see this truth demonstrated.  As Jesus teaches, He addresses more than the external.  He addresses the heart.  As we read through this passage, we get a glimpse of the higher life – with a mind set on things above.

Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment:  But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment:  and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire (Matthew 5:21-22). The external act is that of murder.  The higher life focuses on the anger that is in the heart that produced the deed.

Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:  But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart (Matthew 5:27-28).  The external act is that of adultery.  The higher life focuses on the lust in the heart that produced that deed.

Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you (Matthew 5:43-44).  The human way is to love those who are “loveable.”  The higher life focuses on loving the “unlovable.” A full reading of chapters 5, 6, and 7 of Matthew will continue to reveal the higher life.

You can also see these truths addressed by the Apostle Paul as he calls believers to put off the old man, which is corrupt according to deceitful lusts; and be renewed in the spirit of your mind … that ye put on the new man which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness (Ephesians 4:22-24).

In actuality, that is what the higher life is about – righteousness and true holiness.

Take time to read Ephesians 4:25-32. The higher life is about more than not lying – it is about speaking the truth with your neighbor.  It is about more than not stealing – it is about giving to him that is in need.  It is about more than not speaking corrupt words – it is about speaking words that help and minister grace.  It is about more than our angry, bitter feelings – it is about kindness, tenderheartedness, and forgiveness.

The higher life is about the Lord Himself.  It is about His ways, His thoughts, and His righteousness.

Perhaps you are wondering, “How can I live in that way?  Where do I even begin?”  First, it is important to realize that the higher life is truly about heavenly things.  Jesus said:  … For without Me you can do nothing (John 15:5).  It is an impossibility to live a spiritual life without Him!

Secondly, we must be renewed in the spirit of our minds.  By nature, we have our own thoughts.  We were born with them; we awaken each day to our own thoughts; our thoughts are influenced by others and by the world.  Have you come to realize what your “self” sounds like?  It is, therefore, necessary for our minds and thoughts to be renewed, and there is only one place where we can find God’s thoughts – in the Word of God.  For that reason, it is imperative that we read and study the Word of God, for it is there alone where our minds will be renewed.

Next, God has given the wonderful privilege of prayer.  The Christian can actually come before the throne of God and lay all of her cares and concerns at His feet.  And, as we are still and quiet before Him, He will bring Scripture to our minds.  Then, as we walk in His Word, we walk in His ways.

If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.   Colossians 3:1 

Also, we must not forget the precious Holy Spirit.  He teaches, leads, guides, and brings to remembrance God’s Word as we need it.  Learn to be sensitive to Him!

And, of course, God has given the church – the body of Christ – to edify, build up, and encourage us all.

Indeed, God calls us to a higher life – to a life of righteousness and true holiness.  We cannot get there apart from Him, but by Him we are able to die to ourselves and live unto Him.

If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above,

where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God

Colossians 3:1 


Lord, help us to desire You and Your ways above ourselves and our ways.  Help us to seek, from the heart, the things that are pleasing to You.  Help us to be wives and mothers that reflect Your ways and bring glory to Your name.   Truly, help us to set our affection on things above and not on things of the earth.

About My Father’s Business

imageDid you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?

Luke 2:49

 In Luke 2:41-52, Scripture reveals an account of Jesus’ life here on earth when, at the age of twelve, he stayed behind in Jerusalem at the time of the feast of the Passover.  When His parents discovered that He was not among those traveling with them, they returned, fervently searching for their missing son.  Days later, they found Him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, hearing them and asking them questions.  All were amazed at the understanding and answers of this twelve-year-old boy.  Upon finding Him, His mother questioned Him as to why He had stayed behind and caused them such concern.  In His reply came this piercing question: Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?  It seemed that there should have been an expectation that this was what His life would be about.

What is it that your life is about? Are you a Christian?  Is your life about bringing glory to the Father?  Do you have that heart desire that says:  I must be about my Father’s business?

For your life to be about the Father’s business, there are several things which will necessarily be so.  First, you must be about His business, and not your own.  In many places in the Scriptures, Jesus said:  … The Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He seeth the Father do:  for what things soever He doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise (John 5:19), and I can of mine own self do nothing:  as I hear, I judge:  and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me (John 5:30).  Listen again to Jesus:  For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent Me, He gave Me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak (John 12:49).  Jesus was not about Himself; He was not about doing His own will.  He was not about lifting Himself up, nor about bringing glory to Himself.  He spoke what the Father spoke.  He did what the Father commanded.  He was about His Father’s business.

Secondly, to be about the Father’s business, you must not allow the expectations of others to dictate to you.  In Mark 1:35-39 and in Luke 4:42-44, as well as in other Scriptures, we find the multitudes expecting certain actions of Jesus – because He had taught them, preached to them, healed them, fed them, etc.  However, we always find Him move, not according to their expectations, but according to His Father.  It is interesting to note that in many of these instances He had come directly from that place of solitude and prayer.  No matter how they begged Him to stay, He was about His Father’s business, and it was to other cities that He went to preach.  For us to be about the Father’s business, we must know that to which He has called us.  We must not be distracted by the expectations of others.  We must humbly walk forward, determined to be about the Father’s business.

Thirdly, to be about the Father’s business, we must rightly divide the Word of truth.  We must understand the Spirit of the law, rather than just the letter of the law.  How many times in Jesus’ life on earth did the Pharisees condemn Him because they said He was walking in opposition to the law!  But no, Jesus, who was without sin, understood the Spirit of the law and walked in full obedience to that law, even in the midst of accusations and condemnation.  Examples of this are many:  the plucking of the ears of corn on the Sabbath (Mark 2:23-28), eating with unwashed hands (Mark 7), the woman caught in the act of adultery (John 8), and so on and so on.  Jesus knew, understood, and taught that all of the law was summed up in loving the Lord God and loving your neighbor (Matthew 22:34-40, Galatians 5:14).

What, then, does it take to be about the Father’s business?  Certainly, first, one must be His child.  One must have been born of God, that spiritual birth that takes place at the time of salvation, when one becomes His child.  Next, we must grow in the grace and knowledge of Him.  We must learn to hear His voice and humbly follow.  Be sure – one cannot be about the Father’s business and about her own business at the same time.  It is not possible – for the Father’s business is so much higher than our own (Isaiah 55:8-9).  Also be sure, if we still seek to please men, we are not the servants of Christ (Galatians 1:9).

And do you know what amazing things result from being about the Father’s business?  It is in that place where our lives bring glory to Him.  We are, then, not about ourselves.  We are about those things which are pleasing to Him.  As we do those things that He directs, we reflect Him and not ourselves.  As we say those things which He speaks, we reflect Him and not ourselves.  Interestingly enough, there is a wonderful blessing that we receive when we are in that place of the Father’s business.  It is there, and only there, where we experience peace and joy.  When we find these elements missing from our lives, in all likelihood, it is because we are not about the Father’s business.

One further thought of contemplation for the Christian woman: Do you know why God created the woman (Genesis 2:18)?  If you are married, being about the Father’s business will reflect His purpose in creating you.  Being about the Father’s business will be directly connected to your husband.  Being about the Father’s business will not be about yourself – it will be about the life that the Father has chosen for you.

May we come to that place in our lives that when we are questioned about why we are doing what we are doing, we may humbly, but confidently, reply – did you not know that I have a Heavenly Father? I must be about His business!

In Every Thing

As the church is subject unto Christ so let the wives be

to their own husbands in every thing.

Ephesians 5:24

When we let our reverence for The Lord Jesus Christ be our example and pattern for respect and submission to our own husband, our marriage will, in turn, be an example and pattern to the world.

And we will bring glory to our Lord!