Summary: Have you tapped into the spiritual resources of being IN CHRIST, or just skating by on the fly?
What is your relationship to Jesus Christ? Is he a casual acquaintance? Is He someone you know about from others? Is He someone you have dedicated your life to serving and we could say you are In Christ?
Most people have a second hand relationship with Christ. They only know of a hand me down religion, more reliant on what someone else has told them then an actual personal experience with God. As a result, there is a lacking of fully grasping all which is available to us as Christians. As a result, we don’t totally understand what it means to be born of the Spirit and water.
The Bible says salvation is total deliverance. How many would agree with me that old things have passed away, all things have been made new? When Jesus died on the Cross, He said, “It is Finished.” The price for our salvation was totally paid for. God looks to the cross as being the total redemptive work. What we need to know is How to Live in Christ.
Jesus was the name given to the man, his human side since God is 100% man and 100% God. The name for his divinity is Christ, which is “the anointed” Messiah.
We are called to live In Christ, in the anointing of the Lord. I have seen the bumper sticker Christians aren’t perfect just forgiven. Unfortunately this allows us to lower our standards, and for some it has become a crutch, an excuse for their sinful behavior. We are sinners saved by grace but this does not mean we are to continue living like sinners and justifying the behavior by grace. I hope this is making sense to you. I want you to rise up and live in Christ. John wrote in 1 John 2:1 My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. He then says, But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is not telling us to sin, but saying if we sin, not we will sin, then we can receive forgiveness.
We seem to spend out entire lifetime dealing with sin. Are you ready to move away from that preoccupation and begin to truly live in Christ? John 3:6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. There is no way you can make your flesh spiritual for it can only produce flesh. The Bible generally uses flesh in reference to an unrenewed heart. Spirit is a renewed heart and mind. Flesh never changes, it will always remain flesh.
Remember what Romans 8:1,2 tells us? Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life sets me free from the law of sin and death. Paul is speaking of our experience of living in Christ. If you are in Christ there is no condemnation because you have been set free from the law of sin and death. This means you are no longer caught in the vice of sin, you have a means to live sin free, in Christ.
Vs. 3 For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. And do He condemned sin in sinful man, That is, he condemned sin in the flesh. Vs. 4, in order that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the sinful nature but according to the Spirit. Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life. So the carnal mind is going to die, while the spiritual mind is going to have life and peace. Vs. 7 the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God. You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature, but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ. We are living in the Spirit if the Spirit of God dwells in us.
If we are mindful of the flesh, then we will never reach out and obtain the potential God has for us. Too many people have become self-righteous instead of righteous in Christ, living in the flesh of self-sufficiency rather than depending on life in Christ. Vs. 10 But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness. That is a good word for us tonight, in Christ we are alive because of righteousness.