The TREE OF LIFE is a weekly teaching summary. The Tree of Life for the week ending 10-29-00
The doctrine of walking and perservering in the Christian way of life or marching with the Royal Family of God.
In the New Testament there are different Greek words that are used for "walk."
"Peripateo" means to walk, progress, to regulate one's life, conduct oneself, to be occupied with. It is used for literal walking in MAT 4:18 but it is used primarily for the function of the believer living in the Pre-Designed Plan of God. It is used for both the spiritual and carnal believer.
"Stoicheo" means to march in step, in rank, walk in agreement, function in a system. It is used in the New Testament primarily for functioning in a system and advancing in that system to spiritual maturity.
"Poreuomai" means to walk, pursue on a journey, to follow one so that you become his disciple, proceed, travel, to conduct oneself in a certain manner or to depart. 2TI 4:10 "for Demas, having loved this present world, has deserted [poreuomai] me and gone to Thessalonica; Crescens has gone to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia."
"Anastrepho" originally meant to upset, overrun, or to associate. Its figurative meaning was to behave or to function in terms of human conduct, the practice of principles, to turn back, to turn oneself about. It is used for the conduct and the modus operandi of the unbeliever in EPH 2:3 "Among them we too all formerly walked or lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest."
It is used for motivation for Christian integrity in HEB 13:18 "Pray for us, for we are sure that we have a good conscience, desiring to conduct ourselves honorably in all things."
It is used for life and conduct in the PPOG in 2PE 3:11 "Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness,"
"Orthopedeo" means to walk straight, used for a legalistic manner of living and resultant hypocrisy.
The Pattern for the Spiritual Walk: the Great Power Experiment of the Hypostatic Union.
The pattern for the spiritual walk is given in the great power experiment of the Hypostatic Union of our Lord. This is important to understand because of passages like 1JO 2:6 "the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked."
The humanity of Christ was impeccable during His thirty-three years of the First Advent. He remained absolutely perfect because He resided inside the PPOG for His life, functioning under the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit and God's perfect happiness. Through the virgin pregnancy and virgin birth, our Lord's humanity was born without the genetically-formed old sin nature, thus excluding any imputation of Adam's original sin at our Lord's birth. This means He was born as Adam was created, perfect in a state of impeccability. Because of the availability and utilization of divine omnipotence, our Lord's humanity continued in the state of impeccability under maximum temptation and pressure.
The omnipotence of the Holy Spirit inside the PPOG empowered our Lord's humanity to resist every temptation which was far beyond anything we could imagine. His state of impeccability was absolutely necessary for our Lord to go to the Cross. The justice of God the Father poured out on our Lord Jesus Christ every sin that was and ever will be committed in the human race and judged them.
The First Advent is called an "experiment" in the sense of a demonstration of the power of God the Holy Spirit and a demonstration that any believer who advances to maturity, acquiring God's Happiness (+H), can endure anything in life. With the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit and +H, our Lord was able to endure the Cross. The problem for us is that the Church Age believer continues to possess the old sin nature after salvation and so continues to sin. However, the pattern of the believer's sinfulness or carnality depends upon the amount of time he spends in the cosmic system instead of in the PPOG, or more simply where he does most of his walking or marching.
Believers can walk without being under discipline, but you cannot "march" without being under discipline.
Being in fellowship is the only way we can execute God's plan. Walking describes the purpose of living in the PPOG to glorify God in the great power experiment of the Church Age.
Therefore, we are command walk in a worthy way in ITh 2:12 "So that you may walk in a manner worthy of God who elected you into His kingdom and glory."
This is a general reference to the fulfillment of the PPOG.
If we are going to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord after we believe in Christ, then we must be inside the PPOG, operate in integrity, filled with the Spirit, and expose ourselves to the teaching of the Word of God.
The faith-rest drill is also a state of walking, 2CO 5:7. This is the poise of the Christian life. It is the control of your own life under God's plan for your life. 3Jo 4 "I was very pleased discovered that some of you children keep walking by means of doctrine even as we have received a mandate from the Father."
This is a mandate to keep walking, to keep learning doctrine, to keep advancing spiritually in the Christian way of life.
There are also negative walking passages. Psychotic living in Satan's is called walking in PHI 3:18-19 "For many [believers] keep walking, concerning whom I have often told you, even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ. Whose termination is destruction [the sin unto death], whose God is their emotions, whose fame comes by means of dishonor, who keep on thinking about earthly things."
The same concept is also in IJo 1: 6 "If we contend that we have fellowship with Him p walking in darkness, we lie and do not live the truth."
Walking is also used as a warning against the cosmic system.
JOH 8:12 "Again therefore Jesus spoke to them, saying, "I am the light of the world; he who follows Me shall not walk in the darkness, but shall have the light of life."
Life in the cosmic system is called walking in darkness, Joh 11:9-10 "Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? if anyone walks in the day, he does not stumble, because he sees the light of this world. But if anyone walks in the night, he stumbles, because the light is not in him."
We are to walk by means of the things prepared by God for us in eternity past, such as the problem solving devices.
The Importance rstanding Spiritual Walking.
Walking has a double connotation in the spiritual realm in the New Testament.
First, the utilization of divine power to advance in the Christian life.
Second, the utilization of human energy linked to the old sin nature which results in retrogression or reversion.
Hence, these two categories of walking are related to Church- age believers in advance or in retreat. To advance in the spiritual walk and be a winner, there must be residence, function, and momentum inside the PPOG.
To retreat in the spiritual life and be a loser, there must be residence, function, and retrogression in Satan's cosmic system.
Therefore, walking denotes numerous functions, both pro and con, regarding the spiritual life.
If we are not marching or living (stoicheo), we are in danger of walking in the opposite direction. Many believers stop marching and withdraw from doctrine when the doctrine gets difficult, as noted in JOH 6:66. These believers are not marching but have entered into a state of being Absent Without Leave or AWOL.
There are nine principals regarding being AWOL:
1. Going AWOL is reversing or turning in the opposite way, or a state of being turned. As believers we were designed to live in God's plan for our life or the PPOG.
2. Going AWOL is regressing to a former state, habit, belief, or practice.
3. Going AWOL is a reversal of your priorities, attitudes and affections which is why it can also change your lifestyle and personality.
4. Going AWOL is failing to execute the PPOG.
5. Going AWOL is maxim control of the old sin nature over the life of the believer.
6. Going AWOL is failure to attain the three stages of spiritual growth.
7. Going AWOL is retrogression because of negative volition toward the mystery doctrine of the Church-age, which both defines and reveals God's plan, will, and purpose for the believer's life.
8. Going AWOL is characterized by negative volition to doctrine, being influenced by evil, being in perpetual carnality causing a life of perpetual discipline.
9. Going AWOL is a term used for rejecting absolute truth, and drawing into or accepting relative truth.
Our Lord walked in the prototype PPOG; we are to walk in the operational type PPOG.
In GAL 6:16 we are told "And those who will walk [stoicheo, march] by this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God."
Notice that there are rules to walk by, we cannot just walk any way that we want to and sincerity is not an issue.
There are "not" all kinds of ways to walk, Catholic, Protestant, Pentecostal, Baptist, there is only one way to walk the "stoicheo" way, which is marching according to the Word of God. This means to march in step, march in rank, walk in agreement with, function in a system, follow a leader from the ranks. This actually connotes the unity that should exist in the body of Christ. There is no union stronger or purer than spiritual fellowship in Christ GAL 5:25 "If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk [stoicheo] by the Spirit."
So this word for "walk" tells us that we are to march in step with the
Spirit. To march in rank with the Spirit, in agreement with the Spirit, to function in a system with the Spirit and to follow our leader by the Spirit.
Stoicheo is also used for salvation by faith in Christ, (referring to walking by faith in ROM 4:12. This points to the fact that there is only one accurate way to salvation.
By way of analogy, in literal walking, you are moving forward. In spiritual walking, you are advancing in the PPOG. In literal walking, you are using physical energy. In spiritual walking, you are using divine energy, i.e., the Omnipotence of God.
Believers who walk this way are not quitting or going AWOL and walking in the opposite direction.
The word "stoicheo" means to march under a command with other people marching with you. To perform maneuvers under command. The emphasis here is on discipline and persevering. No one ever advances apart from the discipline of Bible teaching.