The Significance Of Being ďIn Christí

by Douglas Hoff

 

Some people treat the Bible as if it were the newspaper.They may casually glance at the headlines and perhaps expend a little more effort on items of particular interest.Then, when they are done, they cast it aside as if it is unimportant.Some treat Godís word as if it were old news instead of good news.

When a person begins reading the Bible with the desire to know and obey Godís will several important things happen.First, the personís interest increases. This leads one to search for truth.Sure, one who casually reads the scriptures will learn some truth.However, what a difference it makes when one is diligently seeking it like a miner (Job 28:1-23).

Eventually, the seeker will come across certain phrases that at first do not seem to have much importance.Upon closer examination and greater consideration one realizes there is a wealth of truth even in the simplest of phrases. So it is with ďin Christ.Ē

At first, these two words may seem trivial.The reader may believe he already understands what it means to be in Christ.Even though it is a fairly simple concept sadly many people miss the significance of being in Christ.

This expression deals with a personís location.For example, if a man said he lives in Michigan, we know exactly what he means.Though dealing with a spiritual concept the phrase in Christ shows the believersí position.When it comes to physical matters there are only two possibilities regarding oneís place of abode.Either you are living in Michigan or you are not.The same is true spiritually speaking. Either a person is in Christ or he is not.

Being in Christ is of tremendous importance both now and for eternity. Those not in Christ are missing out on everything of everlasting value (2 Corinthians 4:18).This is why everyone should want to be in Christ.

All spiritual blessings are found only in Christ.Referring to Godís children the apostle Paul said that the Father has ďblessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in ChristĒ (Ephesians 1:3).These spiritual blessings include salvation from sin, the promise and hope of eternal life, assurance of Godís help and presence, answered prayers, heaven as the home of the soul, etc.Those not in Christ have none of these things.The only way to obtain them is by getting into Christ.

How does a person get into Christ?Let Godís word give the answer. Galatians 3:26-27 says, ďFor you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ(NKJV).

When a man or woman is baptized into Christ there is a change of position. Before baptism the person is outside of Christ. This is the place of no hope (Ephesians 2:12). After baptism the soul is in Christ thus having access to all of Godís blessings.Perhaps the greatest of them is justification by faith (Romans 5:1).The soul who is in Christ has been forgiven all his sins and is made right in Godís sight (Colossians 2:12-13).Consequently Paul could say ďThere is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirití (Romans 8:1; NKJíV).

Salvation is found only in Christ (2 Timothy 2:10).What about you?Have you been baptized into Christ?Doing this marks the start of the Christian life.The word Christian means a disciple of Christ (Acts 11:26).One is not truly a Christian until he is in the body of Christ which is His church (Ephesians 1:22-23; cf. 1 Corinthians 12:12-27).Jesus told Jews who already believed in Him, ďIf you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you freeĒ (John 8:31-32).The true disciple is one who not only believes but also obeys the Lordís word for only this yields freedom from sin (Acts 22:16).

 

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