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Psalm 119:10-11 With my whole heart I seek you; let me not
wander from your commandments! I have stored up your
word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.

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Monday, February 3, 2014

What does it mean to be "In Christ."

What does it mean to be "In Christ."

There is a lot of Christian lingo that gets spread around in our culture and one of the phrases I hear quite frequently is the phrase "in Christ." I decided today to look into the phrase "in Christ" and try to understand what it means to me as a Christian.

I began by doing a word search for the phrase in my esword bible software and found the term to be throughout the New Testament at least 88 times. It is mainly used in the writings of Paul, but I also found it in the writings of Peter and Luke in the book of Acts (Acts 24:24).

So what does it mean to be "In Christ?"

The best place for me to begin is 2Cor 5:17. Just as I was a new creation at the moment of my human birth, I am now a new creation in my spiritual re-birth in Christ Jesus. 2Cor 5:17 tells me that I am a new creature, or creation. The old things have passed away and new things have come. Being one who is in Christ starts with us being transformed and living a new life from our old ways and habits. Christ died for us to have a new birth in His resurrection. Old passes away, new has come. But making the transition from old to new can be quite difficult from time to time since we are sinful and the old nature wants to creep back in and sabotage our walk with Christ.

Fortunately we were not left alone to accomplish our Christian journey on our own. God gave us the Holy Spirit as a pledge of our inheritance. (Eph 1:14, 2Cor 1:22, Acts 19:1-6) With the help of God through the Holy Spirit I am able to accomplish all things through Christ. Not by my own merit, talents, or ability, but because God has granted it to me. My faith comes from God through Christ. My grace comes from God through Christ, and all that I am is because of Christ. When we begin to understand that Christ is our source for all that we are, the fountain will never run dry. Too many times I try to love someone by my own strength. Eventually I get frustrated because I don't see love in return. When I forgive and the person offends again I find it quite easy to hold a grudge. When I rely on my strength and human ability I will fall short every time.

Being "in Christ" is to be intentional. One can not truly claim to be a Christian and not desire the ways of Christ. (Eph 4:1, 1Thes 2:12, Col 1:10)The old has passed away and the new has come. Being in Christ is coming to the throne daily and crying out to God for more of Him. More faith, more love, more grace... God gives abundantly according to His riches in glory in Christ. (Php 4:19)

For me to be "In Christ" means that all that I am, all that I have, and all that I do is done through and for the glorification of Christ. When I love someone I love them as Christ. When I show someone grace it is done like Christ. Even when I spend time at my job I am working as though I am working for Christ. (Col 3:23-24) Being "In Christ" is not just a pledge that hangs over one's door, it is a way to be. Christianity is not about following rules, doing the right thing, or trying to be good. It is about being one with the Savior and out of that oneness flows more blessings and love that one can imagine
  1. Our faith is - In Christ (Acts 24:24)
  2. Our redemption is - In Christ (Rom 3:24)
  3. We are made alive to God - In Christ (Rom 6:11; 1Cor 15:22)
  4. We have eternal life - In Christ (Rom 6:23)
  5. There is no condemnation - In Christ (Rom 8:1)
  6. We are set free - In Christ (Rom 8:2)
  7. We can not be separated from God's love - In Christ (Rom 8:39)
  8. We are all one body - In Christ (Rom 12:5)
  9. I have reason for boasting in God - In Christ (Rom 15:17)
  10. We are approved by God - In Christ (Rom 16:10)
  11. We are sanctified - In Christ (1Cor 1:2)
  12. I experience God's grace - In Christ (1Cor 1:4)
  13. God chose me - In Christ (1Cor 1:30, Eph 1:4)
  14. We are resurrected from the dead - In Christ (1Cor 15:18-21)
  15. I am triumphant - In Christ (2Cor 2:14)
  16. The veil has been lifted - In Christ (2Cor 3:14)
  17. I am a new creation - In Christ (2Cor 5:17)
  18. We are reconciled to God - In Christ (2Cor 5:19)
  19. We have liberty - In Christ (Gal 2:4)
  20. We are justified by faith - In Christ (Gal 2:16)
  21. We are sons of God - In Christ (Gal 3:26)
  22. We are all one - In Christ (Gal 3:28)
  23. We are blessed with every spiritual blessing - In Christ (Eph 1:3)
  24. We are raised to heavenly places - In Christ (Eph 2:6-7)
  25. I am created for good works - In Christ (Eph 2:10)
  26. I have been brought near to God - In Christ (Eph 2:13)
  27. I can partake in God's promises - In Christ (Eph 3:6)
  28. I have been forgiven by God - In Christ (Eph 4:32)
  29. I place no confidence in my flesh - In Christ (Php 3:3)
  30. My righteousness comes through faith - In Christ (Php 3:9)
  31. My heart and mind is guarded by God's peace - In Christ (Php 4:7)
  32. All my needs will be supplied according to God's riches - In Christ (Php 4:19)
  33. I am complete - In Christ (Col 1:28)
  34. My faith remains stable - In Christ (Col 2:5)
  35. I will give thanks in everything - In Christ (1Thes 5:18)
  36. I am called to salvation by grace not by works - In Christ (2Tim 1:9)
  37. I endure all things for the sake of others - In Christ (2Tim 2:10)
  38. Persecution will come to the godly - In Christ (2Tim 3:12)
  39. Those who revile me because of my faith will be put to shame - In Christ (1Pet 3:16-17)
  40. We will be strengthened and established after suffering for a little while - In Christ (1Pet 5:10)

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