At present, we are working with the light of truth presented by Dr. Francis Schaeffer from his book True Spirituality where we are discussing the basic considerations of the Christian life, or true Christianity.
In the light of the structure of the total universe, in the light of our calling to exhibit the existence and character of God between the Ascension and the Second Coming, in the light of the terrible price of the Cross, whereby all the present and future benefits of salvation were purchased on our behalf—in the light of all this, the real sin of the Christian is not to possess his possessions by faith. This is the real sin.
Whatever does not proceed from faith is sin. Romans 14:23 ESV. The sin here is in not raising the empty hands of faith. Anything that is not brought forth from faith is sin. When I am not allowing this fruit, which has been purchased at such a price, to flow forth through me, I am unfaithful, in the deep sense of not believing God. When we understand this, certainly we must say, “May God forgive us.” The Christian life is a thing of joy, but it should also have the understanding of sorrow, if we compare what could be with what is: the poverty, which riches are offered and when we have brought forth the fruit of the Lord’s enemy, the devil, instead of the fruit of our lover, our Lord.
There are two main reasons why we may not be bringing forth the fruit we should. It may be because of lack of knowledge, because we may never have been taught the meaning of the ‘work of Christ’ for our present lives. There are five possible reasons of ‘not knowing’ in this area. First, the Christian may have been taught how to be justified but never taught the present meaning of the work of Christ for him. Second, he may have been taught to become a Christian through the instrumentality of faith, but then he may have been left, as though from that point on the Christian life has to be lived in his own strength. Third, he may have been taught the opposite; that is, he may have been taught that, having accepted Christ, in some antinomian way it does not now matter how he lives. Fourth, he may have been taught some kind of second blessing, which would make him perfect in this life when he receives it. This the Bible does not teach. And therefore, he just waits hopelessly or tries to act upon that which is not. Fifth, he may never have been taught that there is a reality of faith to be acted on consciously after justification.
Because of this ‘lack of knowledge,’ the Christian may not ‘possess his possessions’ in this present life. But when a man does learn the meaning of the work of Christ in the present life, a new door is open to him. And this new door then seems to be so wonderful that often it gives the Christian, as he begins to act upon the knowledge of faith, the sense of something that is as new as was his conversion. And it has been true for many of us that at a certain point, after we have been Christians for a long time, suddenly through the teaching of the Bible—directly or through someone teaching us—we come to see and understand the meaning of the work of Christ and the blood of Jeus Christ for our present life, and a new door opens for us. So what is needed is the knowledge of the meaning of the work of Christ in our present life, for our present life, and then for us to act upon it in faith. (to be con’t. I will be away from the computer for a couple of days)
Thoughts developed or used directly from the work of Schaeffer, Francis. True Spirituality . Tyndale House Publishers, Inc