Second 8th Week® Ministries

Living Apostles Today | Restoring the Church Back to Her First Love

   The Elements of the Gospel

Open Your Study Bible Open Notepad

Learn to Speak the Language of God's Kingdom

The Charisma of Christ

Lesson 3 of 6

The word charisma is Greek and it means “favor given” or “gift of grace”. This is what God wants us to know about salvation through Jesus Christ. He is the gift of grace whereby we can take on the divine likeness or divine nature. The whole purpose of salvation is to bring us back to God so God can restore the likeness of Christ to the soul.
 
The Charisma of Christ is a Christian doctrine taught by Apostle Peter who wrote, “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust,” 2 Peter 1:3-4.
 
Related Illustration
Click to view full size image.
Full color grace wheel helps you understand the connection between the grace of God and the charisma of Christ.
Click on Image to Enlarge
The divine nature by the divine power. This means that there is a transference taking place. The divine likeness of Christ is to be daily transferred to the soul of the believer. This is the gift of grace because it is the work of grace. By looking at the 5 key definitions of grace and the 9 operations of God in grace one can easily see how grace is designed for us to build faith with just as much as weights are designed for a body builder to grow muscle.  
 
Grace is just one Element whereby the divine nature is transferred to the soul. All 12 Elements are required for you to build strong spiritual muscles. What is interesting about these spiritual Elements is that they are as much for your dining as they are for your exercise of faith. The soul must dine on these Elements for proper nutrition and the will must exercise itself with this holy knowledge for proper building and growth to take place. There is a spiritual balance there that brings forth the charisma of Christ in you.
 
As long as you are building your faith up with these Elements you will grow in the likeness of Christ and partake of the divine nature (the charisma of Christ). But as soon as you stop dining on them, you begin to grow weak and the adversary, the devil, will rule over you.
 
The Catabolic State
 
There is an interesting term used by weight lifters to describe the body when you are exercising properly, repairing, and building. It is called anabolic. Your body is said to be in an anabolic state, a state of building. But when you are working your muscles, but not eating properly or going without food for a long time then your body goes into a catabolic state. It is no longer building, but breaking down muscle just to get the protein it needs to survive.
 
The Body of Christ has been in a catabolic state for a long time. And that would explain why your faith feels like it is not growing, why you feel weak, and why it is hard for you to understand why it seems difficult for you to express the divine likeness of Christ. Where is the virtue of Christ, the Christ charisma?
 
The Charisma of Each Element
 
Related Illustration
Click to view full size image.
The charisma of Christ is unlocked by each Element. When Jesus said that we were to eat of Him, He was meaning that we should study this knowledge to partake of Him.
Click on Image to Enlarge
It’s important to understand that the knowledge of Christ is called the doctrine of Christ (2 John 9) and is dictated by the properties it already possesses. This means that each Element of the gospel already possesses all the virtues (Charisma) of Christ that God designed within that Element.
 
This pre-determined knowledge uses Jesus Christ as the pattern and model for our faith, which is why we say, He is the design of our faith. God has already prescribed the use of Christ for our salvation and provides the stewardship of this knowledge through apostles. Each believer needs to be instructed in the doctrine of Christ and learn the value of Christ in the Elements of the Gospel.
  
When Jesus said, “Have faith in God,” He had something specific in mind, and because of this we say that the doctrine of Christ is ordered by the Lord, for it has a specific form that corresponds to a specific function and application. Therefore, the doctrine of Christ is called the “ordered knowledge.” It is also called “holy knowledge” because God separated His knowledge from the reason of man, which is subject to the wisdom of the world. The knowledge of God does not follow the wisdom of the world; it follows the path of faith whereby Christ only is expressed.
 
The doctrine of Christ is given to clothe us with the virtues of Christ (2 Peter 1:3). Because we cannot touch God outside of the virtues of Christ, God issues grace to draw faith out of the heart that we would touch Him with the virtue of faith by which He receives our soul into His care, bears our griefs, and carries our sorrows. It's really very simple, but because man has complicated it with centuries of polluted theology, it will take a little bit of application and study to undo those years of false indoctrination.
 
We say that Jesus saves, and this is true. We read Ephesians 2:8, "By grace are you saved through faith." We see in this scripture the Elements of grace and faith. Anyone can read the Bible, but reading scripture alone does not teach us the value of these Elements or how God uses them in our daily walk with Him.
 
Because God ordained these Elements of the Gospel for our experience in Christ, God uses the Elements of the Gospel to allow us to see the flow of His Spirit. The flow of the Spirit is the direction the Spirit takes with the knowledge of Jesus Christ. Many believers try to understand the flow of the Spirit by getting in on the “move” of the Spirit, traveling the circuit of seminars and conferences, ready to “flow” with each new “wave” of God. But because they were never instructed in the doctrine of Christ, they do not understand the flow of the Spirit with the Elements of the Gospel and the tools of the covenant.
 
As believers are instructed in the direction the Spirit takes with the knowledge of Christ, they never again have to journey in search of a move of the Spirit. Covenant Christians can again take confidence in the knowledge that they can partake of the divine nature of Christ.
 
Through the Elements we are able to cooperate with the operation of God (Colossians 2:12), which is the work of God within the soul, and understand how He is effecting the soul through the power of the cross and the power of the resurrected Christ. If we do not know these Elements, or what they mean, then we are unable to identify the operation of God within the soul, unable to understand how He carries out the great work of redemption, and remain ignorant of our responsibility.
 
The Holy Spirit is present in the knowledge of Christ to inspire and enforce (work with) the ordered knowledge in order to confirm Christ in the inner man. The Holy Spirit will only recognize what God has authorized and sanctified through Jesus Christ. The doctrine of Christ must proceed from the headship of Christ through apostles (true spiritual government), for when it does, the Elements of the Gospel remain true to God's original plan for them, and our faith remains perfect.
 
A problem arises when believers attempt to build their faith in God with knowledge that does not proceed from the headship of Christ, for each believer then sees Christ as a reproduction of his or her own ideals, and the Elements of the Gospel are embossed with many religious traditions. God will not justify what He does not sanctify.
 
Religious traditions cause the Elements of the Gospel to lose their value to Christ. Unprotected by His truth, the Elements lose value as they are re-directed by the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, which things give witness to man. Under these conditions the grace of God is frustrated, truth is turned to a lie, and works of the flesh replace the works of the Spirit. This is the present condition of the church. God cannot receive the works of this faith back to Himself if the design of Christ is not in the stone (Element).
 
We see the value of the doctrine of Christ coming through true spiritual government. The true pattern of faith is called the truth of the gospel.
 
Again, there are 12 basic Elements that describe how God represents Himself through the power of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. They are listed in the table below.
   
The 12 Elements of the Gospel
 
1. GRACE      
5. SANCTIFICATION
9. CHARITY            
2 . FAITH       
6. HOLINESS
10. TRUTH                 
3. RIGHTEOUSNESS
7. PEACE     
11. REGENERATION
4. JUSTIFICATION      
8. REST     
12. RENEWING OF THE MIND
 
The First Principles
 
In (Hebrews 5:12 and 6:1), the apostle writes about the first principles of the doctrine of Christ. These first principles, which lay the foundation for our faith, are these key Elements. The apostles did not teach a progressive gospel, or a progressive truth. Rather, they taught about how God represents His work of salvation through these Elements, and how we use them to grow in Him (2 Peter 3:18). 
 
Christians today often complain that they are not adequately instructed, or discipled in their faith, and therefore do not experience a meaningful relationship with God and continue in bondage to sin. Yet God provided a living faith through His Son, Jesus Christ, and that living faith is restored through Apostolic Governance through whom God has ordered the knowledge of the truth.
 
In every facet of life, knowledge has to be ordered to be applicable to life; whether mechanic, cook, banker, lawyer, educator, or doctor, all apply themselves to the knowledge that has been ordered for them to function successfully in their trade to make a living. So too, the knowledge of faith must be set in order by apostles to be profitable for faith, and the order must follow the design of God.
 
You will notice that the Elements above are listed in pairs. That is because God designed the gospel to function wholly with His Spirit, not in part (Acts 20:27). God designed each Element to work with its counterpart, or sister Element, on a binary basis.

Print Friendly and PDF