The living word is the expression of Christ in us. It is not good philosophy, Christian values or ethical principles. It is Christ our life.
Renewal by the Holy Spirit is the transformation of our Adamic life into the Christ life. It is not an exercise in good works with the Spirit’s help. It is the Spirit of Christ as our life and manifest in our being as our persona. The branches and fruit are the result of our union with God.
Eternal life is Jesus. Temporal life is Christ in us - Christ our life as Paul says. Avoid Christ our lie. This results from any addition or subtraction from the fullness of Christ for you and in you. Christ our lie is found in ‘other gospels,’ pseudo christs and externalities added like weights to the efficacy of Jesus as our life.
Our growth in Christ advances quickly when we live by the fact that there is no life in any ‘thing,’ any practice, any belief, any rite or any tradition that is not Jesus Himself. Neither is there any genuine knowledge of the self, the development of our person, the fulfilment of our destiny and the experience of our life in the Spirit as sons of God in any identity that is not the person of Jesus and by extension, the Father and Holy Spirit.
Christ is our life in the Spirit. The result of this is our life as sons of God in the body. Now we are sons/daughters in spirit and in truth - not just in potential but in actuality. In the Spirit we are life-giving spirits being fully human and fully alive. We grow continually in transcending ourselves to be more fully who we are as sons with origins in heaven but living and creating new Kingdom life on earth.
C.S Lewis illustrates what it means to be alive in the Spirit with the innocence of a child and the wisdom and revelation of men and women of God. In Mere Christianity Jesus breathes on a bunch of statues and they change from stone likenesses to spirited human beings. In The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe Aslan breathes on the stone animals that have been immobilized by the white witch. A flame of life passes through them and they come alive - a live in the Spirit, alive as sons. There is nothing in all creation that is a substitute for the spirit-life of the person of Jesus incarnated in our being. There is nothing in existence that is equal to the vicarious humanity of Jesus - the truth of Christ as you and the fullness of Christ multiplied as the Body.
We are not alive in the Spirit because we have an outreach, a foreign mission enterprise or operated in the gifts. Our spirit is both at rest and alive when Christ is our life. We are never alive in the flesh. But we are spirit and life as sons and daughters when Jesus is our life.
‘He saved us, [empowered, enlivened, rested] not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit’ Titus 3.5 NIV.