Friday, February 20, 2015
The Difference Between Being In Christ and Being Christ's
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BEING IN CHRIST AND BEING CHRIST’S
2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
Galatians 5:24 “And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.”
To be in CHRIST means to come to CHRIST from your sinful life unto the newness of life that is in CHRIST JESUS Romans 6:4. It means recognising and forsaking your sinful lifestyle and embracing CHRIST as you surrender unto Him your life and affairs Luke 18:13. It means that whereas you were a sinner, now you have just repented of your sins by accepting the LORDSHIP of CHRIST over you where you no lived a life of grace Romans 6:14. This is the beginning of Christianity but not the end as the journey to eternity with GOD has just begun.
But to be CHRIST’S means to be completely sold out to GOD in everything after embracing CHRIST as you came into the family of GOD Romans 14:7. It means to be made perfect in CHRIST Colossians 1:28. It means a total commitment and yieldedness to GOD in every area of your life and total dependence on GOD for your daily living Matthew 6:25. It means accepting the will of GOD against your own will whether it is convenient or not convenient Romans 8:35-39. It means a life of purity that presents the personality of CHRIST in wheresoever he is found Ephesians 3:17-19. It means a representation of JESUS in the world at large 1 Peter 2:9. This is the centre point of true Christianity and not the mere proclamation of religiousness as seen in most Christian circle today.
The Christian faith is centred on CHRIST and as such, it is expected for the professing Christians to possess the character traits of JESUS CHRIST who is the head of the church 2 Corinthians 10:7. To be called a Christian is not to belong to a denominational church or coming from a Christian background, or even fathered by a Christian family. To be called a Christian is for your life as an individual to be buried in CHRIST in every ramification, whereas you are the one living and walking around but CHRIST is the one seeing in you. Hence Apostle Paul declared “the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me” Galatians 2:20.
CHRIST as the centre point of the Christian faith will cause the true believers in Him to be completely submerged into His personality that wherever you are spotted or seen around the world, the people around you will never see you but CHRIST Colossians 1:27. When the Apostles were first called Christians in Antioch, it wasn’t because they knew that these people were with JESUS, but they saw a replica of JESUS in these followers and then concluded that they are Christians (CHRIST –like), after examining them for a whole year Acts 11:26. This is the difference between the early Christians and today’s believers in CHRIST. Whereas the early Christians were distinct from the rest of the world in every sphere, today’s Christians however are in direct competition with the world system on how to win the world for themselves, even though they know that though they are in the world, but not of the world. John 17:16 “They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.”
To get the stage set for the subject matter, we must first examine the erroneous belief in the Christendom that everyone in the church is a Christian. This is misleading and a misrepresentation of true Christianity. Until you begin to address people by who they are in the real sense of it just like JESUS did regarding Judas Iscariot John 6:70, and Peter when the devil took possession of him Matthew 16:23, you may mistake a known thief and robber as a saint just because he or she is a member of a local church assembly. Again, there is no two ways about the Christian identity. Once you are a child of GOD and a true Christian, saved, sanctified and washed in His blood, the HOLY SPIRIT of GOD will bear you the inner witness Romans 8:16, but this witness must conform to the word of GOD as it relates to the result of your output which must be a reflection to the innermost conviction in the inside of you, otherwise you will be deceiving yourself by claiming what you are not James 1:22. Hence the Bible says “GOD know those that are His” 2 Timothy 2:19.
In today’s Christianity, one of the characteristics that prove people to be in CHRIST and never CHRIST’S is their reaction when they are being cautioned or warned against ungodly behaviour, character, approach, lifestyles, choices, attitudes and appearance using the word of GOD 2 Corinthians 5:11. Have you ever come across people that say you are judging them, preaching law and so on and so forth when you are ministering to them? These are people that are quick to mention that ‘I am a Christian’ even when such question hasn’t been asked. In their attempt to point their Christian faith to others, it often left them been seeing as typical hypocrite as a result of the fact that no sign of CHRIST-like attitudes is found in them. Evangelism by character is the greatest instrument of winning souls for the kingdom of GOD Acts 4:13, but in a situation where the life of the supposed Christian is even worse than those outside the corridor of Christianity, how true is such a claim that you are a Christian? The Bible says “A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid” Matthew 5:14.
Another characteristic of the Christians in CHRIST but who are not CHRIST’S is their struggle with the world. Any supposed Christian whose flesh is still the master is just in CHRIST, but not CHRIST’S. The inseparableness of the world affairs from the Christian fellow is the reason behind the partial or complete disobedience to the things of GOD Jeremiah 6:16-17. The love of the world and the attachment to the things of the world will never allow such a Christian to fully crucify their flesh with the affections thereof, hence they made themselves GOD’S own enemy right there in the church James 4:4. Such a Christian should however know that “if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die” Romans 8:13.
And yet another characteristic but the most devastating of being in CHRIST but not CHRIST’S is wearing the toga of religiosity without the commensurate power it provide 2 Timothy 3:5. This is responsible for the many claims of most Christian religious practitioners today who as a result of their religious engagement but in actual sense are deliberately disobeying the word of GOD often said they are the children of GOD. In this perspective, you will discover that people that are moved and led of the flesh, live for the flesh and satisfy the yearnings of the flesh and at the same time claiming the sonship of GOD, are in the majority in the church today. One of the things that endeared CHRIST to the Father was that He always does the things that pleased the Father John 8:29. So when a man lives in pleasures pleasing himself and satisfying himself with every desire of his heart, instead of living to please GOD, such a person is in Christ but certainly not CHRIST’S.
To be in CHRIST therefore is the entry level into true Christian life, as you have just turned a new leaf from your sinful nature into GOD’S nature, by accepting JESUS CHRIST as your LORD and personal saviour. But you definitely need to proceed from that entry level into the graduate class where CHRIST is now seen in you; hence you are now CHRIST’S. Brethren, until you come to the level that you are no longer yourself, you will surely be in Christ but will never be CHRIST’S neither can you hear His voice because you are preoccupied by the flesh. JESUS said “But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me” John 10:26-27.
Now when you see people shouting ‘I am born again’ ‘born again’ and yet their entire being speaks otherwise, you will see people in CHRIST but never CHRIST’S. if you are just in CHRIST by becoming a new creature but you never allow the SPIRIT of CHRIST to possess you in totality which bring the true nature of CHRIST to bear, friend, you are none of His despite your claims. Romans 8:9 “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.”
In conclusion, it is rather very unfortunate that in the Christendom today, over 98% of today’s Christians and worshippers are in CHRIST, whereas less than 2% are actually CHRIST’S. The danger it portends here is the fact that while both those in CHRIST and those that are CHRIST’S are together in the same church and fellowship, only those that are CHRIST’S are heaven-bound in this regard while all others cannot be sure of heaven being their eternal possession and destination. This is because the time of filtration is coming where the tares and the goats will be separated from the wheat and from the sheep Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43; 25:31-46. The most devastating effect of being in CHRIST without being CHRIST’S is the voice of rejection from the Master at the door, whereas you are “saying, Lord, Lord, open to us”, the Master will instead declared from inside saying “Verily I say unto you, I know you not.” Matthew 25:11-12. May this never be your portion today in JESUS name. Amen.
Dear brothers and sisters in CHRIST JESUS, this race that is set before us required diligent effort to run it with grace and win the crown, and never to run it in vain Philippians 2:16. Just the Master said “I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star. And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” Revelation 22:16-17.
Are you ready to come to JESUS CHRIST now? Are you ready to be CHRIST-like in every area of your life and not just to be seen as a Christian? Do you want to be truly saved and acceptable by GOD? The stretch out arms of JESUS is still very much wide open to receive you. Make the most out of it now before the door is shut against you in eternity. Why not cry aloud unto GOD now telling Him you don’t just want to be in CHRIST, but you want to be CHRIST’S. Ask Him to wash you through and through, and it shall be well with you.
God bless you.
1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, 2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds. 4 Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin. 5 And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: 6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. 7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? 8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons. 9 Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? 10 For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.
11 Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. 12 Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees; 13 And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed. 14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: 15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled; 16 Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright. 17 For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears. 18 For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest, 19 And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice they that heard intreated that the word should not be spoken to them any more: 20 (For they could not endure that which was commanded, And if so much as a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned, or thrust through with a dart:
21 And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake:) 22 But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, 23 To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, 24 And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel. 25 See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven: 26 Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven. 27 And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: 29 For our God is a consuming fire.