The Riches OF GRACE
“hath appeared to all men.” Titus 2:11
Robert W. Reed
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
II Corinthians 5:17
The term “In Christ” or its equivalent is used over 130 times in the New Testament. The Bible speaks of the believer being in Christ as well as Christ being in the believer. This little phrase “In Christ” describes our spiritual relationship with the risen Savior. From the moment we are saved, God sees us in Christ. In Philippians 1:1, the apostle Paul says, “...to all the saints in Christ Jesus...” when writing to the church at Philippi, showing their new standing with the Lord God.
In this article we will take a look at the believer’s position, privileges, and practice in the Lord Jesus Christ. This truth should be of great joy and peace to every Christian.
Our Position In Christ As Christians:
The term “In Christ” defines our position as believers. God sees us either in Adam or in Christ according to I Corinthians 15:22, “for in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” Before salvation, all are considered to be in Adam. According to Romans 5:12-19, to be in Adam, is to share in all that Adam was and did. Adam was the head of the human race and we belong to that race by physical birth. In Adam all are separated from God, Ephesians 2:1-3, 4:17-18, Genesis 2:17; slaves to sin John 8:31-47; and condemned, Romans 6:23, John 3:18, 36. This is why we must be born again and have our status changed.
To be in Christ is to share in all that He is and all that He did. Jesus Christ is the head of the church and we belong to it by spiritual birth. The phrase “In Christ” shows the sphere in which the believer has been placed. We are identified and united with Christ. By being in Christ we have eternal life and are no longer subject to sin and condemnation. By being baptized into Christ, I Corinthians 12:13; there is now no condemnation to the believer, Romans 8:1; and He is passed from death unto life, John 5:24. The following list of Scriptures will illustrate this further: Galatians 2:20, we are crucified with Christ; Colossians 3:1, we are risen with Christ; Ephesians 2:5, we are alive with Christ, and in Ephesians 2:6, we are seated in heavenly places with Christ. To be in Christ is the very opposite of being in Adam. For we now partake of Christ as we once did of Adam. We share in the history of Christ’s death, burial, resurrection, ascension, and glorification. Amen!
Our Privileges In Christ As Christians:
As Christians there are many privileges that we possess. Some of these privileges are pointed out to us in Ephesians chapter one. In verse 3 we read, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.” We are chosen in Him in verse four, we are adopted in verse five, and we have been accepted in the beloved in verse six. According to verse seven, we have redemption and forgiveness in Christ and through His blood. It is in Christ that we have obtained an inheritance in Ephesians 1:10-11, 20-23. We are also sealed by the Holy Spirit of God by being in Christ in verses 12-14. In Ephesians 2:11-22, we see that we have been made nigh unto God by being in Christ Jesus. We are also complete in Him, Colossians 2:10, and made righteous, I Corinthians 1:30. In other words, all things are ours in the Lord Jesus Christ, I Corinthians 3:21. These privileges are only made possible in Christ by the Gospel, Ephesians 3:6.
Our Practice In Christ As Christians:
According to Ephesians 2:10, we are God’s workmanship created in Christ Jesus unto good works. Our position and our privileges should determine our practice. We are to live in the sphere of Christ. In other words, walk in Him. We do this by walking in His love, Ephesians 5:2; light, Ephesians 5:8; and wisdom, Ephesians 5:15. Walking in Christ is the sum of the Christian life because it denotes our conduct and lifestyle. We are to practice what we profess. The only way to accomplish this is by putting on the new man which is created in righteousness and true holiness according to Ephesians 4:24. In doing so we must put off the former conversation of the old man, verse 22. The old man represents what we were in Adam. In the past, our lives were dominated by anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication, etc, Colossians 3:8-9. But now, as Christians, our lives are to be dominated by mercy, kindness, meekness, longsuffering and forgiveness, Colossians 3:10-14. We are told in Colossians 2:6, “As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him.” As Christian’s we are to be controlled by the Holy Spirit and not the flesh. According to II Corinthians 5:17, we are new creatures in Christ and our walk is to be in alignment with our position. This is why we are told to present our body as a living sacrifice unto God, Romans 12:1-2, and be not conformed to this world but to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. As believers in Christ, God wants us to live for Him as a testimony to others.
In conclusion, salvation is in a person and that person is the Lord Jesus Christ. This is why we are considered to be in Christ once He becomes our Lord and Savior. Please consider I John 5:12, “He that hath the Son hath life;” and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.” and I John 5:20, “...we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ.”
Acts 16:31: “And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”
Acts 20:21: “Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.”
John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
John 3:26: “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.”
Galatians 3:26: “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.”
Galatians 3:28: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”
Romans 8:39: “Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Philippians 4:19: “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
Romans 8:1: “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
I Corinthians 1:2: “Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:”
Colossians 1:28: “Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:”
I Thessalonians 1:1: “Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.”
I Thessalonians 2:14: “For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus: for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen, even as they have of the Jews:”
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” Acts 16:31
Victory Baptist Church
Pastor Robert W. Reed
14473 Bellingrath Road
P.O. Box 257
Coden, Alabama 36523