UB David + I'll B Jonathan, Inc.

under a special agreement with


this lesson is written by The Mailbox Club International


presents "New Life in Christ" Course 3

 

 

UB David + I'll B Jonathan, Inc.

under a special agreement with

The Mailbox Club presents


New Life in Christ - Course 3

Lesson 8: In Christ

2 Corinthians 5:17


In our last lesson we learned that there are now two families in the world—the family of Adam and the family of Christ. God sees us as being IN ADAM if we are in Adam's family. If we are in Christ's family, He sees us as being IN CHRIST.

He sees you in Adam or in Christ. He sees me in Adam or in Christ.

What does it mean to be "in Adam"? To be in Adam is to share in all that Adam was and did. By nature we were all in Adam—separated from God and slaves of sin and Satan. How terrible!

But here is some wonderful news. When we were born again, God put us in Christ. We could not do this ourselves, but God did it for us. We are now IN CHRIST.

How did we get into Christ? God put us there! The Bible says,

"But of Him [of God] you are in Christ Jesus…" 1 Corinthians 1:30

The most precious phrase in the whole Bible is the little phrase, "In Christ." This phrase or its equivalent is used over 130 times in the New Testament! Here are some verses that tell us of our new position in Christ:

"But of Him you are IN CHRIST JESUS…" 1 Corinthians 1:30

"…God…has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places IN CHRIST, just as He chose us IN HIM before the foundation of the world…"Ephesians 1:3-4

"For we are His workmanship, created IN CHRIST JESUS for good works which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them." Ephesians 2:10

"Therefore, if anyone is IN CHRIST, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." 2 Corinthians 5:17

".…and we are IN HIM who is true, even in His Son Jesus Christ." 1 John 5:20

"IN WHOM we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins." Colossians 1:14

"There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are IN CHRIST JESUS…" Romans 8:1

"…to those who are sanctified IN CHRIST JESUS…" 1 Corinthians 1:2

Did you notice the words "in Christ," "in Him," and "in whom"? As you read the New Testament, you will find these words used many, many times.

What does it mean to be "in Christ"?

To be in Christ is to share in all that Christ is and all that He did. The Bible says that God has "blessed us with all spiritual blessings…IN CHRIST." We are going to consider some of the blessings that are ours because we are in Christ.

we are forgiven

…we are forgiven

Because we are in Christ, God has forgiven us of every sin. The Bible says,

"IN WHOM we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins." Colossians 1:14

 

 

we are justified

…we are justified

What does it mean to be justified? It means to be declared righteous. How are we justified before God? We are justified IN CHRIST. The Lord Jesus was perfectly righteous, and now God sees us righteous in Him. He took our sins that we might have His righteousness. The Bible says,

"For He [God] has made Him [Christ] to be sin for us, Who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God IN HIM." 2 Corinthians 5:21

 

we are made near to God

…we are made near to God

As sinners we were separated from God and afraid to come into His presence. But now, in Christ Jesus, we can come boldly into God's presence because the blood of Jesus Christ has cleansed us from all sin. The Bible says,

"But now IN CHRIST JESUS you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ." Ephesians 2:13

 

we are accepted by God

…we are accepted by God

He made us accepted IN THE BELOVED [in Christ]

Before we were saved, we were enemies of God. Now we are accepted by Him as His own dear children. Why are we accepted by God? Because we are IN CHRIST! The Bible says,

"To the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted IN THE BELOVED[in Christ]." Ephesians 1:6

 

we are made holy

…we are made holy

When we stand before God, we stand in the holiness of Christ

God has a new name for believers. He calls believers "saints in Christ Jesus." The word "saint" means "holy one." In God's sight, every believer is a saint in Christ.

In ourselves we are not holy, but God sees us in Christ. When we stand before God, we stand in the holiness of Christ. We are "holy IN CHRIST."

 

we are sealed

…we are sealed

sealed us with the Holy Spirit

We are God's children and our destination is Heaven. God has put us in Christ and has sealed us with the Holy Spirit. The Bible says,

"…IN WHOM also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise." Ephesians 1:13

 

we are complete

…we are complete

For in Him dwells all the fulness of the Godhead bodily; and you are complete IN HIM

Everything we need to live the Christian life is ours in Christ. We are complete in Him.

The Bible says,

"For in Him dwells all the fulness of the Godhead bodily; and you are complete IN HIM...." Colossians 2:9-10

We have considered only a few of the verses that tell us what it means to be in Christ. As God's children, we are no longer in Adam. We are now IN CHRIST.

Does this mean that we will never sin again?

No, it does not. In the letter that the Apostle Paul wrote to the believers at Corinth, we find some things that seem hard to understand. On the one hand, Paul calls these believers "saints," and he says that they are "sanctified (holy) in Christ Jesus." On the other hand, in the same letter Paul speaks of some terrible sins in their lives. Some of them were proud; some fought among themselves; and some of them were guilty of immoral acts.

What is the explanation of this? How could Paul say that they were "holy in Christ" while at the same time they were not living as Christians should live? To answer these questions, we must understand the difference between our standing and our state.

Our standing is the way God sees us in Christ

What is our STANDING? Our standing is the way God sees us in Christ. It includes all that God has done for us in Christ. God has given us a perfect standing in Christ.

Is our standing always perfect? Yes, it is. Why? Because it depends on what God has done for us in Christ. We are IN CHRIST, and God sees us perfect in Him. The Bible says,

"For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified [those that are in Christ]." Hebrews 10:14

What is our STATE? Our state is the way we live on the earth. The Bible calls it our "walk."

Our state is the way we live on the earth

Is our state ever perfect? No, it is not. Why? Because it depends on what we are in ourselves. We are sinful. The Bible says,

"If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us." 1 John 1:8

It will help us in our Christian life if we remember that our STANDING is the way God sees us in Christ, while our STATE is the way we live on the earth. In Christ we are always perfect in God's sight; in ourselves, we are sinful.

Does this mean that we are to be satisfied with our sins? No, it does not! God wants our day to day living to come up to our standing in Christ. We are "holy in Christ"; God wants us to be holy in our everyday living. The Bible says,

"But as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct." 1 Peter 1:15

How can we be holy?

In His Word, God has told us that we are to "walk" by faith. This means that we are to count on what we are in Christ. The Bible says,

"As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him." Colossians 2:6

Now here is a great secret of the Christian life:

Faith in our standing makes it real in our lives

When we see that we are "holy in Christ," we become holy in our everyday life. When we see that we are "saints in Christ Jesus" we begin to live as saints should live. When we see that we are truly "the children of God," we begin to live as children of God should live. As we count on what we are in Christ, the Holy Spirit makes it real in our life.


God has put me in Christ. In myself I am nothing; in Him I am everything.

my prayer


QUIET TIME

The secret of a strong Christian life is the daily "Quiet Time." This is a time spent alone with God in the study of His Word and in prayer. Here are some suggestions that will help you to form the habit of a daily Quiet Time.

1

Time and Place

choose a time and place

Choose a time that is good for you. Early morning is the best time for most people.

Choose a place where you can be alone. This might mean getting up in the morning before everyone else in the family.

After you choose a time and place, stick to them.

2

The Bible

As you open your Bible to read, first close your eyes and talk to God

Use a Bible that has good print and is easy to read. Have a plan for reading. Read the Gospel of John first. After you have finished John, begin with the Gospel of Matthew and read right through the whole New Testament.

As you open your Bible to read, first close your eyes and talk to God. Confess your sins; ask Him to speak to your heart through His Word as you read it. Remember that you are in His presence.

3

Prayer

take time to pray

After reading and listening for God to speak to your heart through His Word, take time to pray. Thank Him for His word to you; thank Him for His blessings—name them, one by one. Thank Him for the blood of Jesus that cleanses us from all sins. Thank Him for answering your prayers. Thank Him most of all for the Lord Jesus, your Saviour.

Do you want to ask for something? Tell Him the desires of your heart. He listens to every request.

Remember to pray for your family and friends. It is good to make a list of those for whom you are praying.

Do you really want to know God? Then you must spend time alone with Him.

…Start your Quiet Time today!

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