Summary: this testimony of the apostle Paul in which he shares his own personal theology with the Galatian Christians who had become known for their backslidings. It is a beautiful miniature, shining forth as an unusual and sparkling gem, an entire commentary on
WILL YOU ALLOW GOD TO REPRODUCE CHRIST’S LIKENESS IN YOU?
by: A.W. Tozer
"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live;
yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life
which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith
of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave him-
self for me. " Galatians 2:20
There seems to be a great throng of professing Christians in our churches today whose total and amazing testimony sounds about like this: "I am thankful for God’s plan in sending Christ to the cross to save me from hell."
I am convinced that it is a cheap, low-grade and misleading kind of Christianity that impels people to rise and state: "Because of sin I was deeply in
debt—and God sent His Son, who came and paid all my debts."
Of course believing Christian men and women are saved from the judgment of hell and it is a reality that Christ our Redeemer has paid the whole slate of debt and sin that was against us.
But what does God say about His purposes in allowing Jesus to go to the cross and to the grave? What does God say about the meaning of death and
resurrection for the Christian believer?
Surely we know the Bible well enough to be able to answer that: God’s highest purpose in the redemption of sinful humanity was based in His hope that
we would allow Him to reproduce the likeness of Jesus Christ in our once-sinful lives!
This is the reason why we should be concerned with this text—this testimony of the apostle Paul in which he shares his own personal theology with
the Galatian Christians who had become known for their backslidings. It is a beautiful miniature, shining forth as an unusual and sparkling gem, an entire
commentary on the deeper Christian life and experience. We are not trying to take it out of its context by dealing with it alone; we are simply acknowledging the fact that the context is too broad to be dealt with in any one message.
It is the King James version of the Bible which quotes Paul: "I am crucified with Christ." Nearly every other version quotes Paul as speaking in a different tense: "I have been crucified with Christ," and that really is the meaning of it: "I have been crucified with Christ."
This verse is quoted sometimes by people who have simply memorized it and they would not be able to tell you what Paul was really trying to communicate. This is not a portion of Scripture which can be skipped through lightly. You cannot skim through and pass over this verse as many seem to be able to do with the Lord’s prayer and the twenty-third Psalm.
This is a verse with such depth of meaning and spiritual potential for the Christian believer that we are obligated to seek its full meaning—so it can become practical and workable and liveable in all of our lives in this present world.
It is plain in this text that Paul was forthright and frank in the matter of his own personal involvement in seeking and finding God’s highest desires and provision for Christian experience and victory. He was not bashful about the implications of his own personality becoming involved with the claims of Jesus Christ.