The illustration below encapsulates the step-by-step testimony detailed in my book, My Journey Through the Cross, and is found on page 141. It shows the spiritual path from unbelief to glory.
We begin our journey identifying with the old nature, our eyes on ourselves, calling ourselves sinners, caught up in religion, condemning ourselves under the law, lost in the sin and guilt cycle and not walking in agreement with God because we don’t know who we are. As a result, we receive a Catholic-inspired guilt teaching, like 1 John 1:9 out of context, using it as a sin and guilt “confessional booth” idol to “cleanse ourselves” of what God says He has already cleansed us of -sin and guilt (John 13:10, Heb 1:3). Instead of living in humility and dependence on Him, we live in pride and performance, and hide in fear and shame. Notice the arrows indicating the backward and repetitive inertia feeding the dark cycle.
Contrarily, when we -by faith- step forward to the approach the cross with our eyes on Christ (Heb. 12:2), everything changes. Our paradigm shifts from sin-power to Christ-power as we learn to walk in the Spirit of God. We naturally identify with the new nature, walk in the reality of no condemnation (Rom. 8:1, John 5:45) remembering that when we shrink back from Him, God has no pleasure in us (Heb. 10:38). We then proceed forward through the cross where He died. When we pass through the cross, we die, as well, to our “selves,” our sin, and our pitiful human understanding which never ceases to trip us up. Notice the forward pointing arrows leading away from the dark cycle to the cross and beyond to freedom (Gal 5:1) from everything that hinders (Heb. 12:1), a.k.a., resurrection life. (Continued below)
As we pass through the cross by faith, the cross catches and holds securely forever everything not of God. As we press in and pass beyond the cross, everything not of God stays on the cross forever. As we live beyond the cross, we walk in humility. That means we live in dependence on God and in agreement with Him calling ourselves saints, as He does. During the cross passage, the mind is drastically renewed, the heart is humbled and stabilized, relationship with God becomes intimate, relationships with others improve, and from the inside out life transforms as the new nature takes over.
In this process, as we walk progressively in agreement with God’s truth, we learn to walk in freedom. Freedom from the power of sin leads to freedom in the glory of His presence. And living in His presence is life abundant. Meanwhile, we must claim and protect the land that God has given us. When the enemy plots, schemes and attacks us persuading us to return to the shadows of the cross, we must stand in God’s unchanging truth -which declares that we are forever the new nature (1 Cor. 6:17, 2 Cor. 5:17)- and humbly thank Him for the all-surpassing gift of righteousness.
After the cross, when we stumble, we do not “go to God” for cleansing because He is Emmanuel (“God with us”) already, omniscient and omnipotent living inside of us and having known our situation and cleansed us already 2000 years ago. Instead, we stay in the light by gathering with other believers, as the Scriptures instruct us, to wash one another’s feet in love as Christ did in John 13:10 (1 John 2:1, 3:20). John 13:10 is fleshed out in the healing model of James 5:16, the ultimate goal having progressed from cleansing at salvation to healing in sanctification.
“Blessed and to be envied,” he said, “are those whose sins are forgiven and put out of sight. Yes, what joy there is for anyone whose sins are no longer counted against him by the Lord.” (Rom. 4:7-8) Oh, what joy!
See also seeinggrace
Hebrews 1:3 Amp He is the sole expression of the glory of God [the Light-being, the out-raying or radiance of the divine], and He is the perfect imprint and very image of [God’s] nature, upholding and maintaining and guiding and propelling the universe by His mighty word of power. When He had by offering Himself accomplished our cleansing of sins and riddance of guilt, He sat down at the right hand of the divine Majesty on high,
Hebrews 10:38 But the just shall live by faith [My righteous servant shall live by his conviction respecting man’s relationship to God and divine things, and holy fervor born of faith and conjoined with it]; and if he draws back and shrinks in fear, My soul has no delight or pleasure in him.
Hebrews 12:1-2 Therefore then, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses [who have borne testimony to the Truth], let us strip off and throw aside every encumbrance (unnecessary weight) and that sin which so readily (deftly and cleverly) clings to and entangles us, and let us run with patient endurance and steady and active persistence the appointed course of the race that is set before us,
2 Looking away [from all that will distract] to Jesus, Who is the Leader and the Source of our faith [giving the first incentive for our belief] and is also its Finisher [bringing it to maturity and perfection]. He, for the joy [of obtaining the prize] that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising and ignoring the shame, and is now seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
1 Corinthians 6:17 But the person who is united to the Lord becomes one spirit with Him.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!
Galatians 5:1 In [this] freedom Christ has made us free [and completely liberated us]; stand fast then, and do not be hampered and held ensnared and submit again to a yoke of slavery [which you have once put off].
Romans 8:1 Therefore, [there is] now no condemnation (no adjudging guilty of wrong) for those who are in Christ Jesus, who live [and] walk not after the dictates of the flesh, but after the dictates of the Spirit.
John 5:45 Put out of your minds the thought and do not suppose [as some of you are supposing] that I will accuse you before the Father. There is one who accuses you—it is Moses, the very one on whom you have built your hopes [in whom you trust].
1 John 3:20 Whenever our hearts in [tormenting] self-accusation make us feel guilty and condemn us. [For we are in God’s hands.] For He is above and greater than our consciences (our hearts), and He knows (perceives and understands) everything [nothing is hidden from Him].
1 John 2:1 My little children, I write you these things so that you may not violate God’s law and sin. But if anyone should sin, we have an Advocate (One Who will intercede for us) with the Father—[it is] Jesus Christ [the all] righteous [upright, just, Who conforms to the Father’s will in every purpose, thought, and action].
John 13:10 Jesus replied, “One who has bathed all over needs only to have his feet washed to be entirely clean. Now you are clean—but that isn’t true of everyone here.”
James 5:16 Admit your faults to one another and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous man has great power and wonderful results.
1 Peter 4:8 Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love makes up for many of your faults.
Romans 4:7-8 “Blessed and to be envied,” he said, “are those whose sins are forgiven and put out of sight. 8 Yes, what joy there is for anyone whose sins are no longer counted against him by the Lord.”