The New Covenant is a life-giving covenant. It involves receiving life and giving life to others. It begins with allowing God to love us and then it involves us being empowered to love God and others. This is the essence of New Covenant life. As leaders in the body of Christ we are not only to set examples in the action of these things, we are to be the substance of this truth to those we lead. We must excel in allowing God to love us and we must also excel in loving God and others. Love is a matter of relationship and God’s nature is one of relationship. Relationship is not merely a matter of friendship; it is a matter of authority. We are joined to others to expand the inheritance of God’s life to the world.
The dynamic of the Trinity is the dynamic of plurality. God is not God without the attribute of giving and receiving. Relationship is not something He does; it is something He is. Therefore, everything He does is relational. Submission is part of the nature of God. Relationship is the nature of God. Life-giving has to also be life-receiving in its nature. There is a submission to receive and activate life to others, not control and manipulate in order to take from others.
God is a relational being. He relates to Himself. He is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. There is unity of the One Being of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Therefore, there is that in the Son which constitutes Him and not the Father; and there is that in the Holy Spirit which constitutes Him the Holy Spirit and neither Father nor Son. The Father is the Begetter, the Son is the Begotten, and the Holy Spirit is the One proceeding from the Father and the Son. Therefore, because these three Persons in the Godhead are in a state of unity, there is but one Lord God Almighty and His name one (Jn. 1:18; 15:26; 17:11,21; Zech. 14:9). The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are never identical as to Person, nor confused as to relation, nor divided in respect to the Godhead, nor opposed as to cooperation. The Son is in the Father, and the Father is in the Son as to relationship. The Son is with the Father, and the Father is with the Son as to fellowship. The Father is not from the Son, but the Son is from the Father as to authority. The Holy Spirit is from the Father and the Son as to nature, relationship, cooperation, and authority. Hence, no Person in the Godhead either exists or works separately or independently of the others (Jn. 5:17-30, 32, 37; 8:18). This is the way of relational authority.
Authority is the ability to give life, therefore it is always dependent upon receiving life from another life source. God in His Trinity is an interchange of life to and through who He is. A relationship with Him and those in authority enables us to be a life source to others. The New Covenant is the place of restored authority. The Old Covenant was an administration of the knowledge of good and evil and the best that one could do in that old system was to be fruitful, multiply, and fill. There was no ability to subdue and have dominion, since subduing and dominion are true aspects of life-giving authority (Gen. 9:10). The unfortunate paradigms passed on generationally through the Old Covenant mindset is one of subduing by control and manipulation and establishing dominion through a power of self-serving agendas. God became His Word expressed as the Man Jesus to restore the authority of mankind in the earth. When God became flesh in the form of Jesus He became the source of restored authority for mankind. He was the door to the restored source of life. Jesus was a man full of grace and truth (Jn. 1:14), the very substance that empowers subduing and dominion. Subduing is the ability to change things. It is an attribute of bringing life to dead places. It is the power of life to death, light to darkness, healing to sickness, order to disorder, and the like. Dominion is an attribute of truth. It is crumbling every lie with truth. When things are true they destroy the things that are not. These things have been restored in the New Covenant when we embrace authority in a New Covenant reality. New Covenant ministry is not about blessing you, it is about empowering you to be a blessing to others. It is about subduing and having dominion in life. It is about you giving life to others. We must be life givers and influencers of all the nations of the earth. New Covenant Ministry is intended to change people and all of the kingdoms of the world. Jesus was the door to this change, but the Church is now the source of this power of change to the world.
All authority in heaven and earth comes from God, but everyone is meant to manifest a testimony of truth and the authority of life. Authority is the ability to give life to others. This means that authority only comes from truth. When we are true to whom we are and true to the boundaries of what is given to us, it can give life to others. When we cross the God-given lines of authority we become takers. We become people who grasp for power. Truth crumbles the lie, but a lie cannot overpower the other lies of the world. A president is a president, but not the head of individual households. A parent is a parent and cannot act as a child and a child is a child and cannot act as a parent. A brain surgeon is not an entrepreneur, and an entrepreneur is not a brain surgeon. We must respect the realm of authority. As a pastor I must respect a brain surgeon in his realm of authority and a brain surgeon must respect my authority as a pastor. I may know how to use a knife, but I don’t have the birthright, the training, or the testimony of life in who I am to be a brain surgeon. For this reason, you don’t want me to do brain surgery on your head! We must all learn to recognize who we are in life, embrace the authority of who we are, and live to give life to others in the responsibility of our authority. Leaders must lead, givers must give, administrators must administrate, fathers must be fathers, mothers must be mothers, and etc. All of these things are a matter of relationship with God and others and a testimony to who we were created to be.
Food For Thought,
Ted J. Hanson