Monday, April 13, 2009

United With Christ

As a believer in God and His son Jesus Christ I know that Christ died for me; He paid the price for my sins. But do I know that I also must die? Not a physical death, mind you, but I must die to sin.

It is a decision everyone must make. Oswald Chambers once said, "It takes a long time to come to a moral decision about sin, but it is the great moment in my life when I do decide that just as Jesus Christ died for the sin of the world, so sin must die out of me, not be curbed or suppressed or counteracted, but crucified."

Are we suppressing our sin, excusing it away, saying, "It's just who I am"? Or are we crucifying it on the cross with Christ?

Romans 6:6 says, "For we know that our old self [our sinful self] was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin." If we choose to put aways our sinful selves we will be Co-Crucified with Jesus Christ, God's Son.

Which brings me to my next point: Not only is our old self crucified with Christ but we also share in the glorious resurrection! Romans 6:5 says, "If we have been united with him like this in death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection."

How wonderful to be so united with the Son of God! Hebrews 2:18 tells us that Christ was also tempted, just like you and me, so that He would be able to help us overcome sin and temptation. Of course, He never gave into temptation, which is what makes him the perfect lamb who was slain for us.

Oswald Chambers also wrote, "The proof that I have been through crucifixion with Jesus is that I have a decided likeness to him. The incoming of the Spirit of Jesus into me readjusts my personal life to God. The resurrection of Jesus has given him authority to impart the life of God to me, and my experimental life must be constructed on the basis of His life. I can have the resurrection life of Jesus now, and it will show itself in holiness." Mr. Chambers goes on to write, "When I have made the moral decision about sin, it is easy to reckon actually that I am dead unto sin, because I find the life of Jesus there all the time. Just as there is only one stamp of humanity, so there is only one stamp of holiness, the holiness of Jesus, and it is His holiness that is gifted to me. God puts the holiness of His Son into me, and I belong to a new order spiritually."

Which brings me to my third and final point: After we are crucified with Christ, and resurrected through the power of God we take part in Co- Eternal Life with the Son. Romans 6:8-11 says, "Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. For we know that since Christ raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives he lives to God. In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Jesus Christ."

How amazing! We are alive forever in Jesus Christ. So many worries, frustrations, fears melt away when I meditate on that truth.

Christ cannot die again; He died once and for all to sin. We also, after making the decision to put away sin, have died once and for all to sin. This is how we are granted eternal life.

But the crazy thing is this: we are not perfect. We still mess up and sin, even after we decide to crucify ourselves with Christ. That is why we must make the decision every day. As Oswald Chambers wrote, "We have to keep letting go, and slowly and surely the great full life of God will invade us in every part."

Please, make the decision once and for all. Stop making excuses! The sin in your life is not "who you are"! God wants something so much more grand for your life. Crucify your sinful self, let the power of God invade your life and resurrect a profound holiness, and accept eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour.

*All quotation of Oswald Chambers taken from the book "My Utmost For His Highest"; all scripture quotations taken from the New International Version Bible.

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