Summary: What does it mean to be "Crucified with Christ?" This text examines that concept.
INTRO: The Christian life is the noblest and happiest life that a man can live, but it is no bed of roses and no holiday journey. Once you enter this life it is a battle from that day until you die.
The text says: "I am crucified with Christ." What is meant by that? We know what it meant for Christ to be crucified. But when Paul says, “I am crucified,” what does he mean? He was not there; he did not hang on the cross. What does he mean when he says, “I am crucified?”
Crucifixion means death. If we are crucified, we are dead to sin, to the old life, to the old lusts, to the old self, to the old ambitions. We take a stand with Christ. We say to the sinful and worldly things “So far as you are concerned I am dead. You have no more power over me than you have over a dead body.” Paul is saying a great thing here. He did not reach that standard in a day or a month. It was a long, hard process, and it will be hard for us, too.
I. A CHRISTIAN’S FEET SHOULD BE CRUCIFIED.
Jesus’ feet were crucified. They crossed His feet upon the upright beam of the cross and drove the long spike into them. That spike tore through the flesh and the blood and the bones—just imagine the agony.
Our feet should be crucified, too. What do we mean by “crucified feet?” Well, we must be careful where they take us and never let them lead us into a place that will dishonor Him. If our feet are crucified, we will be following in His wounded footsteps.
One night He washed the feet of His disciples. He wants our feet to be clean, too. They ought never to walk in the slimy places of this old earth, but ought to go on many errands of mercy. We are to use our feet in Christian service. That means missions. Either going ourselves or sending others by giving.
II. A CHRISTIAN’S HANDS SHOULD BE CRUCIFIED.
Jesus’ hands were crucified. They were stretched out upon the crossbeam of that cruel Cross and in agony and blood they were nailed to the tree. Back in the upper room, He showed those hands to His disciples.
If our hands are crucified, we will be careful what we handle. They should never handle anything that will stain them with sin or wrong. The blessed pierced hands of Jesus were laid upon suffering human beings to bless them, but can you imagine Jesus holding anything sinful in those hands? If you want to be like Him, you must be careful what your hands handle.
III. A CHRISTIAN’S EARS SHOULD BE CRUCIFIED.
If our ears are crucified we will be careful about the things we listen to. There are voices all about us, voices that tempt us downward; but if we are His, we will not listen to these voices.
Some of these are Sunday voices which say, “Don’t go to God’s house. You have been busy all week. Have a good time instead of going to church.” That is the voice of the Devil, and the crucified Christian must not listen to him. Some of these voices are weekday voices. They say, “Put over a shady deal. Make more money. Forget what the preacher said Sunday. You must look out for yourself.”
Crucified ears do not listen to gossip and the things which hurt others. The one who listens is almost as bad as the one who tells. There are many who lap up gossip with their ears as a cat laps up milk with his tongue. They have “itching ears.” I have never read that Jesus listened to gossip about anyone!
IV. A CHRISTIAN’S EYES SHOULD BE CRUCIFIED.
Isaiah was talking about Jesus when he said, “His visage was marred more than any man” (Isaiah 52:14). On the cross His face must have been battered beyond recognition. They pressed the crown of thorns upon His brow. It pierced His eyebrows and the blood covered His eyes. They were crucified!
If our eyes are to be crucified, we must be careful what they look at. There are so many things today that make an appeal to the eyes, and through the eyes to the lower passions. For proof of this just look at the magazine covers or commercials on TV. Also the TV programs. If our eyes are crucified we must look away from those things. We need to look upward!
ILLUS: A Christian dreamed that he was deep in a well in the middle of the night, but as he looked up he saw a single star. He kept looking up, and it seemed that the star let down silver lines into the well to lift him up a bit. Then he looked down and immediately he began to sink. So he kept his eyes upon the star until finally he was lifted out of the well. There is just one star for the Christian—the Morning Star.