Many look for a ‘newness of life.’ Many search for a freshness that gives them a sense of awakening or healthiness.
Have you found that mysterious ‘something’ that truly fills the void inside you? — that mysterious ‘something’ that answers the inner anxiety deep within yourself?
Everyone has a deep inner desire for something meaningful. We all long to live a life of purpose. We search for ‘something’ that seems new and uplifting, that settles our inner, spiritual agitation.
But where can we find the true answers that settle us and complete our search for a newness of life?
There is only one true way to find a newness of life.
If we are to know a genuine, TRUE, enduring newness of life, then we must begin by being IN Messiah Yahushua [the Hebrew Name for Christ Jesus]! We must begin by coming to Him!
Let us look where the answer is explained — the Holy Bible:
Therefore we are buried with Him [Yahushua (Jesus)] by baptism into death:
that LIKE AS Messiah [Christ] was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father,
even so we also should walk in newness of life. (Romans 6:4)
This Verse Reveals A Principle:
- First, a death — to be buried with Yahushua Messiah, God’s Son, through water baptism.
- And then, a raising up [as Messiah was raised up from the dead] — to walk in “Newness of Life.”
If we want the true Newness of LIFE we must first allow a death — a Death-to-Self to occur.
We must first allow ourselves to be buried with the Messiah, God’s only begotten Son.
For this post, however, I would like to focus on the principle revealed in this Scripture:
- First, a Death-to-Self.
- And then, a Raising Up — to walk in Newness of Life.
We have all experienced this principle in a general sense.
We experience a great disappointment. We seem to be in the depths of a dark hole. Nothing seems right. But, then — there seems to appear a silver-lining behind the darkness. We hope that maybe — maybe this time, things will be better.
Yet, as I stated before, if we are to know a genuine, TRUE silver-lining — an enduring, hopeful newness of Life, then we must begin by being IN Messiah Yahushua!!
There is no solution in ourselves.
We must turn away from ourselves, and find our solution IN Him — by becoming a new creature/creation IN Yahushua Messiah:
Therefore if any man be in the Messiah, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (2Corinthians 5:1)
We will never really find the genuine Newness of Life until we seek HIM, bury our life in Messiah Yahushua, in His love for us individually and personally, and allow His Life to reign in us.
Immersing ourselves IN Yahushua Messiah is the first step — the start to walking in Newness of Life!
- If we are walking by faith in obedience to the Bible, the written Word of Yahuwah Elohim [the Hebrew name for the LORD God];
- If we are buried with Yahushua, through water baptism, and through a Death-to-Self;
- If we are committed to allowing our life to be hidden with Messiah (Colossians 3:3);
- then, we can be raised up with Messiah, and we can begin to know a genuine Newness of LIFE.
This principle of allowing a Death-to-Self to occur, in order to be raised up to walk in newness of life, is the Key to knowing this newness of life. It is the Key to growing closer to what we are looking for, to what we were created to do, and finding purpose and meaning.
This KEY is called Death-to-Self. It is when we sincerely make a genuine commitment to walk in obedience to God’s written Word.
But before we look further into this principle, let me first share a warning regarding this search for newness of life.
Searching For Newness of Life: **A Warning**
There is something mysterious about this newness of life. Many people search for a newness of life. Some call it an ‘awakening’ or a ‘refreshing.’
But, many [including many Believers in Yahushua], are searching for this newness in the wrong places. The result is they become entrapped in following dark, worldly wisdom or man-made systems of religions and doctrines.
The warning therefore is this:
As we saw in Beware of the Wisdom of the Wise, this world’s selfish, twisted ways are familiar and popular!
This world’s ways and its religious systems are the ‘accepted’ ways for multitudes.
Yet, this world’s twisted ways, this world‘s systems of wisdom/religion/spirituality — these things lead to darkness, dissatisfaction, deception, and bondage. These are Satan’s tools of deception!
The Prophet Isaiah
The prophet Isaiah warns us of the darkness of this world’s ways:
To the law [the Torah] and to the testimony [the witness of the prophets and of Yahushua] [we must look to]: if they speak not according to this Word, it is because there is no Light in them. (Isaiah 8:20)
This Scripture teaches us that if we are seeking for guidance among those who do not speak according to the written Word of Yahuwah [the LORD], then there is NO light in them – NO truth in them!
Receiving spiritual guidance apart from God’s written Word [the Bible], is a dark path that leads downward into deception and bondage!
Only the complete Word of Yahuwah [the Bible] — the Torah and the testimony of the prophets and His Son, Yahushua Messiah [Jesus Christ] — is where we must look to find solutions. These are the two witnesses that offer True, Eternal Light and understanding in our search for newness of life.
ONLY God’s written Word is trust-worthy for TRUE guidance and enlightenment: Your Word is a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path. (Psalms 119:105)!
What are Satan’s tools of deception?
- A twisted version of the Bible.
- An extra set of ‘spiritual’ writings.
- Man-made systems of religion/spirituality.
Such spiritual mixtures are defiled! They mix truth with error.
Those who follow such lies are in the depths of bondages and curses. Following the teachings and instructions offered by the world’s twisted, man-made mixtures of wisdom/religion/spirituality is deceptive, demonic, and destructive (Hosea 4:6)!
I cannot say it enough!
If we are to find true Light and true understanding for our path — if we desire to walk in Newness of Life, then we must pursue guidance that is in complete agreement with the written Words of the Bible! The heavenly Father’s Word is the only Book that reveals Truth and Eternal Wisdom.
The Bible alone is the source, The Standard for true, liberating wisdom — “the wisdom from above” (James 3:17)!
But, if we are following a path or embracing a ‘wisdom’ that is not according to the written Word of God, then it is a path of ‘NO light!‘ It is a path of darkness, ignorance, deception, and lies — a darkness of earthly, soulish, and demonic pathways.
We must separate ourselves completely from such false, defiled spiritual mixtures, no matter how ‘right’ they may seem.
The heavenly Father has promised Light [truth and understanding], and Newness of Life, for those who walk in the truth of His written Word [the Bible] — as the Scriptures tell us: “Light Arises in the Darkness For the Upright” (Psalms 112:4a).
Now stay with me, as I will now return to this principle:
- First a death, and then, a raising up — to walk in Newness of Life.
The One Recurring Theme
I have found that the biographies of great men and women of faith offer insight on walking in newness of life. Their stories reveal the principle — that newness of life begins with a death, a Death-to-Self.
Stories of Yahuwah’s people reveal a progression in their relationship with Father. The one recurring theme in these faith-filled stories, apart from their solid devotion to the written Word of God, is their on-going sacrificial life — or ‘The Way of the Cross.’
Over and over again, these people of faith yield themselves to a ‘Death to Self.’ That is, they lay down their own understanding, they refuse to allow sinful attitudes or behaviours to take hold of them, and they embrace God’s direction, as revealed in His written Word.
As these strong Believers grow and mature spiritually, they enter into a deeper understanding of Father’s great love. Their own love for Father and His Word increases. They continually hunger and thirst for more of God. The natural outflow of their love for Father is a willingness to live the sacrificial life — a willingness to die to their own interests, their own agendas, a willingness to die to their pride and reputation.
The Holy Spirit’s transforming work draws them closer to Messiah, and they begin to bear the fruit of His Life within them. Out of their love relationship with Father, these faith-filled Believers find ‘The Way of the Cross’ to be almost effortless.
Every time they fulfill a Death-to-Self — a ‘sacrificial’ laying down of their own self-interests, laying down any offensive behaviour or any resistance to God’s Word, so that they can obey the Word of Yahuwah, they then receive a joyful assurance of Father’s guidance and light.
Some of these Believers tell of a sweet river of joy that comes to them when they walk in The Way of the Cross.
I am also looking for that sweet river of joy. But, the secret to experiencing this joy is a certain kind of sacrifice — a dying-to-Self.
Dying to Self
Dying-to-Self can be a painful experience, as I have discovered. Yet when we know Father’s great love for us and trust His goodness, then sacrifices of our will, in order to fulfill His will, come much easier.
- It is this Dying-to-Self that is the Secret to the Newness of Life.
God loves us with an overwhelming love! He wants only what is best for us and what is good for us! Allowing our life to be buried with Him is to find the joy of Yahuwah’s abundant love — it is what we have been searching for!
We begin by living in an on-going cycle of losing ourselves, turning away from our own solutions, turning away from anger, resentment, disobedience so that we can lean on Him completely — learning to be IN Him, allowing His Life to reign in us.
Little by little, we begin to fulfill the testimony of this Scripture: Your life is hidden with Messiah [Christ] in God. (Colossians 3:3b)
We must allow our life to be hidden with, and connected to, Father’s plans, purposes, and character, through His Son Yahushua. This is how we will be able to say, “Not my will, but Yours, Abba Father.”
Dying-to-Self is a day by day, sometimes moment by moment, process of yielding our will to Father’s will. We may often find ourselves in our prayer closet agonizing and weeping, not sure what to do, but saying, “… not I, but Messiah” (Galatians 2:20).
The Hungry Soul
Rees Howells, the intercessor, is an excellent example of walking in The Way of the Cross. He said that the transformation for him was slow and bitter!! Yet, he was convinced of Father’s love for him and therefore, he learned the truth of this verse:
“… to the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet.” (Proverbs 27:7)
Perhaps the sweetness referred to in the above verse is part of that river of joy I’m looking for. Perhaps that river of joy is actually the river of peace that Isaiah talks about:
O that you had hearkened to My commandments! then had your peace been as a river, and your righteousness as the waves of the sea: (Isaiah 48:18)
As we see in this Scripture, to hearken to (listen and obey) Yahuwah’s commandments yields a peace as a river.
The Hungry Soul wants to hearken to and obey Father’s written Word, no matter how bitter.
The Hungry, Thirsty Soul wants to lay down selfishness and pride in order to follow our loving Creator and King! Why? Because we have learned that Yahuwah’s love for us is the best and sweetest love there is! We have learned the principle for walking in Newness of Life — to allow Messiah’s LIFE to reign.
This is what Rees Howells knew. And what a mighty man of faith he was!
Sacrifice — Dying-to-Self — these are bitter things, yet they yield a sweetness, a peace, a maturity, and a strength! This is the newness of life we are looking for! It comes when we bury our lives in Yahushua Messiah and become His devoted disciple.
He tells us how we are to be His disciple:
Yahushua said: If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me (Luke 9:23).
To walk humbly with our loving, heavenly Father is a mysterious, bitter-sweet life. It is to deny ourselves, deny our selfish impulses, and learn to take up our cross — learning to live for God, and learning to say, “Not my will, but Yours, Father!” When we can begin to do this, we will begin to know a Newness of Life that is sweet, joyful, inspiring, and energizing!
Trust the Father’s goodness and His great love for you, and yield to His nudges to do His will! He will comfort you and encourage you as you yield to His guidance!
When we seek Him earnestly, submitting to His written Word, dying to our selfishness, then we will discover that every bitter thing is sweet!! And we will know the LIFE of the risen Messiah dwelling within us — we will know the true and enduring meaning of Newness of LIFE!
Here are some links revealing Indicators of Walking in Spiritual Mixtures – Walking in Darkness:
- Occult Listing – a comprehensive list of false gods, false religions and practices
- Should Christians Practice Yoga?
- The Spiritual Deception of Yoga
- A Course In Miracles – A Christian Examination — Examining its origins and its tenets
- The Lie of the New Spirituality — Never underestimate the ability of Satan to duplicate religious experience. We must avoid the notion that sincerity equates truth!
- Cults and World Religions — 8 pages of links to articles about Cults and World Religions
- Pharmakeia and Sorceries in the Last Days
- Trusting in Yahuwah With All Your Heart
- Blessed Are They Which Do Hunger
- The Holy Spirit Will Guide You Into All Truth
- How Can I Satisfy My Thirsty Soul?
- Dying to Self
- A Way That Seems Right: Avoiding the Strong Delusion – a closer look at ‘spiritual mixtures’
- Acquiring A Teachable Heart
- The Pathway of Purity
- Sukkot: Hidden in the Shade of God – an indepth study by Grace in Torah; a study on our hidden life in Messiah, and how this whole world is a shadow of the heavenly reality
- Biographies of Great Christians