|1 Corinthians 15:31 |
31 I affirm, by the boasting that I have in you in Christ Jesus our Lord, that I die daily.3 [When you take up the daily cross, to wait on God persistently and patiently, hearing and obeying His commands, you die a little each day, until Jesus Christ is revealed in your body. George Fox said: "there must be 'a coming into his death, a suffering with Christ;' and this is of necessity to salvation; and not temporarily, but continually: there must be a 'dying daily.'"]
3 I die daily. Always bearing about in the [our] flesh the same death [of the inward cross] of the Lord Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who live are constantly progressing to death [crucifying the old man] for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus might be revealed in our mortal flesh. 2 Cor 4:10-11. As our selfish spirit, the old man, dies on the inward cross of self-denial, Jesus increases in us, like bread is leavened.
George Fox wrote of this dying in his Journal:
.. you must come into his death, and die [the spiritual death of the inward cross of self-denial] with him, as the apostles did, if you will live with him. This is a nearer and further advanced state, to be with him in the fellowship of his death, than to only eat bread and wine in remembrance of his death.
You must have fellowship with Christ in his sufferings; 1 Pet 4:12-13
if you will reign with him, you must suffer with him; 2 Tim 2:12
if you will live with him, you must die with him; 2 Tim 2:11
and if you die with him, you must be buried with him, Rom 6:4
and being buried with him in the true baptism, you also rise with him. Col 2:12
Then having suffered with him, died with him, and been buried with him, if you are risen with Christ "seek those things which are above where Christ, sits on the right hand of God." Eat the bread which comes down from above, which is not outward bread; and drink the cup of salvation which he gives in his kingdom, which is not outward wine. And then there will not be a looking at the things that are seen, (as outward bread and wine and water are), for the apostle says, "The things that are seen are temporal, but the things that are not seen are eternal." So here are many states and conditions to be gone through before people come to see that, and partake of that which "comes down from above:"
For, first, there was "a taking of the outward bread and wine in remembrance of Christ's death." This was temporary, and not of necessity; but at their liberty, "As often as you do it,..".
Secondly, there must be "a coming into his death, a suffering with Christ;" and this is of necessity to salvation; and not temporarily, but continually: there must be a "dying daily."
Thirdly, a "buried with Christ."
Fourthly, "a rising with Christ."
Fifthly, after they are risen with Christ, then "a seeking those things which are above, a seeking the bread that comes down from heaven" and a "feeding on that and having fellowship in that." For outward bread, wine, and water are from below, and are visible and temporal; but, said the apostle, "We look not at things that are seen, for the things that are seen are temporal, but the things that are not seen are eternal."