Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Like a Red Rag to a Bull (11/28/13)
TITLE: 'CHAYAH' LIFE
By Rae Marie Bujan-D'Andrade
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In Matthew 16:17-18, Jesus declares to Peter that upon the revelation of His ‘Messiah-ship’, He would build His Church and the gates of hell would not prevail against Her. This revelation by the power of the Holy Spirit transformed Peter’s life in such a comprehensive and profound way, that the man who delivered the first Evangelistic sermon of the New Order on the Day of Pentecost, cannot be considered the same man, who denied Christ. This fact is not just reasonable, but it is accurate – for 2 Corinthians 5:17 asserts that when a man is in Christ, He is a New Creation. In other words, the transformative work of Christ by the creative power of the Holy Spirit brings man into a new order of life. This restored life (‘zoe’) is referred to in John 10:10 as, “More abundant Life”.
Akin to ‘zoe’, is the profoundly powerful Hebrew word, ‘Chayah’. Deuteronomy 8:1 affirms that if God’s people would obediently walk in His Holy system of Life they would “Live (‘Chayah’), Multiply and Possess the land”. ‘Chayah’ speaks of restored, prosperous life. In its root meaning, we can properly understand Peter’s transformation from spineless, fowl-mouthed fisherman, to mighty Apostle, Leader and Martyr - For though Peter had such a profound ‘life-changing’ revelation of Jesus, He was not immediately transformed. Clearly, having a momentary revelation of Christ does not equate to being transformed into His image and likeness. This transformative work would truly take effect in Peter’s life, through the outpouring and successive work of the Blessed Holy Spirit.
The word ‘Chayah’ has three root meanings, each building upon and shaping the reality of this covenant promise. 2 Corinthians 6:17-18 states that El Shaddai’s people should come out from among the world and be separate. They should abstain from what is unclean and He would be a Father to them. This scripture perfectly expresses the primary root meaning of ‘Chayah’. Profoundly, the Lord Almighty or El Shaddai is the Character and Nature of God who calls a people out of the system of darkness unto His covenantal generation as was manifested in the ‘Abrahamic’ journey from idol worshipper to Father of Faith.
For this super abundant life to truly infiltrate our walk, there has to be that clear demarcation of who we are and what we believe. There can be no conflict or mixture of secular ideologies and belief systems, but the Word of God in all its Truth and Purity must be the standard upon which we build our lives and thus chart our course. Such an understanding demands a meticulous church – a sober and vigilant people. A people who guard the mentality and culture of their life, understanding it is integral to the transformative work of Christ.
The Second aspect of this root, expresses the work of the Holy Spirit upon the life of the Believer. It is the Mighty Hand of our Creative God who takes the broken and corrupt soul of man and skillfully molds his life into something new. He is indeed the Potter and we, His Church are His clay. Willing clay in the Creative hands of the Almighty Potter produces a people who live by His revelation. This is in fact, the third and final meaning of ‘Chayah’. The conclusion of this molding process yields a Church with clear vision, whose food is to do the Will of the Father. His identity becomes Her identity. Life is lived through His eyes and by the rhythm of His heartbeat. They are planted upon a firm and unshakable foundation and will not be tossed to and fro by the winds of darkness. Such a Church is a violent and destructive weapon against the kingdom of darkness, mightily advancing and establishing the eternal Kingdom of God in the earth.
(Matthew 16: 17-18; 2 Corinthians 5:17; 2 Corinthians 6:17-18 have been paraphrased, and not quoted from any specific translation).
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