2002-04-08 - Committing a Belknap
Psalm 19:5 I acknowledged my sin to Thee. And my iniquity I did not hide; I said, 'I will confess my transgressions to the Lord'; And You did forgive the guilt of my sin.
I have been reading a book on the history of England. I came upon a short account recently of Sir Robert Belknap, a Court of Common Pleas Judge. While he was a Judge all Judges were asked to sign a document that allowed the king to, "by his Regal power revoke what was acted on in Parliament." This was during the reign of Richard II. Belknap signed the document but then said regarding his capitulation, "There wants nothing but an hurdle, an horse and an halter, to carry me where I may suffer the death I deserve, for if I had not done this, I should have died for it, and because I have done it I deserve death for betraying the Lords." He was, shortly after this, banished from the kingdom.
If we are honest we would agree that we all ought to change our middle names to Belknap. Belknap was a sell out. He did what was expedient and suited his own needs at the expense of what he knew was right. If you are a Christian and profess that you don't do the same in your walk with Christ, you are deceiving yourself. Don't be fooled into thinking that I am only talking to you. No, I am talking to myself first and foremost.
If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us 1 John 1:8.
As Christians we have a personal and spiritual union with Jesus Christ. We are united to Christ and have become one with Him as He is one with the Father. For example, 1 Corinthians 2:16 makes the startling claim that we have the mind of Christ. Do you feel like you have the mind of Christ? I don't think that any of us do. But there is a special union between us and Christ which is based on the forgiveness of sins and the fellowship we have in Him. It is a lot like John chapter 15 puts it. We have been grafted into Christ and that union is real and abiding.
Union with Christ is one of the great doctrines that we forget to talk about. This is sad because it is so practical. Romans 6:4 tells us that we were crucified with Him and that as Christ was raised from the dead, so also we "might walk in newness of life." Romans 6:6 then goes on to tell us that our "old self was crucified with Him." Why? "That our body of sin might be done away with, that we should no long be slaves to sin." Ephesians 2:5, 6 tells us that we were "Made alive together with Christ," and, that we were "Raised up with Him, and seated with Him in the heavenly places." Do you see the unity here? Union with Christ is a core part of our faith.
This is why we all ought to take Belknap for our middle names. Even though we have union with Christ, we still sell out, often, to sin. However, we need not do this because we are united with Christ in His death, resurrection, and victory over sin. We should walk in newness of life. We should live victoriously. Far too often we settle for gutter faith and as Children of the King of Kings we have no need to settle. So as we begin a new week, let us seek and struggle to avoid committing Belknap's.
Soli Deo Gloria,