10 But it was to us that God revealed these things by his Spirit. For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God’s deep secrets.
At the time of Paul’s missions, the resurrection was fresh. It brought along Pentecost, and the deliverance of the Holy Spirit to the hearts of all humanity. If Paul was fired up about any one thing, it would have been the resurrection of Jesus, the abolition of the Law which heretofore damned all humanity, our salvation from that damnation by what was, I’m sure, the completely unpredicted, uncharacterized, misunderstood grace of God. People would not have understood the opportunity it gave us to go into the Cave of Wonders and find totally new, hidden, secret, miraculous treasures of God. That is, people would not have understood the opportunity God’s grace gives us humans for growth and progress in understanding. Unfortunately, they still don’t. That progress has stalled over the last 2000 years, and we’re still caught up on the whole salvation through grace through faith thing.
The focus of Paul’s whole ministry is that Jesus was resurrected, exactly like he said, so therefore he is to be trusted as a demonstration of God’s Power and faithfulness. What this told the early Christians is, “apparently God doesn’t work exactly like we’ve been thinking lo these thousand years. Apparently God has forgiveness, and grace, and unconditional love in His heart. Apparently He doesn’t want us to die. Apparently He’s personally, deeply, lovingly involved in our lives and maturation. Apparently he’s our father…” The thing Paul understood about the teaching power of the Holy Spirit wasn’t just some kind of self-improvement wisdom. It wasn’t a wisdom that helped clarify a lot of problems and questions the learned had been struggling with for years. It wasn’t good to know, privileged information, truth for truth’s sake. The wisdom that Paul understood was: the dynamic of our relationship with God has changed. Our lives mean something new now that Jesus has died and come back from the dead. The development of humanity has had a complete saltation, and it all has to do with Jesus Christ, his death and resurrection, his ministry of truth and understanding, and the Holy Spirit whom he poured out onto all of us so that we could begin to live in this new way. We know something you don’t, which is that we are now alive.
Now the name of that life is Slavation. The source of that life is Salvation. Without being saved from the Law, we could not live. We would indeed have to keep on living to avoid sin, living to fulfill the law. But with the Law abolished, we can live to fulfill God’s purpose for us. We no longer have to have God come down and bless exceptional men. We no longer take our orders in solitary, mysterious bursts. Every moment of our lives can be connected to God, who before could have nothing to do with us because we were sinful, unclean, and not fit to be in His presence! The dynamic of our relationship changed when Jesus rose from the dead because it tore down the curtain, turning us into creatures of love instead of creatures of sin, putting us into direct contact with our Maker, the one and only God who has the power, and wisdom, and knowledge, and love, and passion, and reality to deal with our lives in a truthful, meaningful, fulfilling way. The gift of Slavation is not “not damnation”. The gift of salvation is God himself, bridged by the Holy Spirit, “who searches all things, even the depth of God.”
For my entire Christian life I’ve been taught the gospel in relation to “Your sins are absolved. Be glad and grateful you’re not going to Hell.” What we teach people when we teach the salvation from sin in church is the very nature of sin. What’s happening when we focus our teaching on how great it is not to have to pay for our sins anymore is that we get a great, deep understanding of Sin. Why are we studying sin in church? Sin ought to be the last thing on our minds! It doesn’t exist, technically; on paper there is no such thing. The law which defined and tallied sin no longer exists as of the resurrection of Jesus. So why do we go to sunday school to talk about a thing which is no longer relevant? It’s a terrible tragedy, a complete halt of progress, that our churches today focus on sin-and-Jesus’s-lack-thereof. We are meant to be mining the depths of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God, wherein the Holy Spirit will be our guide because he KNOWS the depths, he’s searched them and mapped them and will bring us through with Power and Glory. We ought to be much farther, as a race, in our relationship with God, than we are right now. We’ve had 2000 years, and we spent every one of them looking over our shoulder saying “I’m glad I avoided damnation!”
Now is the time for us to forget about sin. Now is the time for us to move forward in our relationship with God. Now is the time to take things to the next level. The days of Jesus’s ministry and the evangelical missions of Paul marked a radical shift in the course of Human development. They were the period of time in which God came available, freely, completely, biblically, personally, to each and every one of us. What is the next step in our development and understanding? Where are we going as Christians? What are we learning that will help us to stop fighting wars? Will help us to stop dying of disease? Will help us to stop polluting this gorgeous planet of ours? Will help us to stop worrying, crying, destroying, sabotaging, sinning, hurting, wondering? Does that sound like Heaven to you? Heaven is meant to be brought to Earth. We’re meant to bring ourselves up to God. The way I see it, we’ve been waiting 2000 years for Him to come down to us. If this section of Paul’s letter makes one thing clear, it’s that God is an actionable God, and we are meant to be actionable followers of Him. Paul explains here that we have the Power, given by God, through understanding, enacted by the Holy Spirit, to change the world completely, just like Jesus did. We have God’s power to stop wickedness, evil, unfortunate circumstances, sadness, badness of all kinds. We have the power to enact understanding in the hearts and minds of everyone we meet, and collectively raise the human consciousness to the next level of life, which will include none of the bad, and more of the Spirit of God. It starts with ourselves. God does reveal that power. He does give that understanding to those who see demonstrations of it, are hungry to learn, and willing to sacrifice whatever stupid Gods, rulers, and wisdom they chase around in exchange for solid substance, a joy which will anchor us in reality and understanding, make us feel like kids again, and raise us up from the dead. There’s no use working for salvation. Or trying to keep up with salvation. It’s over. It’s done. Move on. Ask God what’s next, and work for that instead.
This is part of the Word of Wisdom Series