By CARLOS SPENCER
This is a topic that is often misunderstood, but it is important and worthy of deeper discussion and consideration. Christ lives in us to the extent that we allow the Holy Spirit to reside in us, and we live as our Saviour lived. We are all sinners and scripture (the Apostle Paul) makes this point clearly in Romans 3:23 (KJV): “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Like most things in life, God gives us a choice, and we must be willing to yield to the presence of the Holy Spirit and enable Christ to face and handle our challenges and burdens.
The process is not automatic, much to the surprise of many. We must make the right choices and invite Christ into our lives in a conscious way….so that He may live within us and perform His good work. It is imperative that we make the first step, and then the Holy Spirit takes control. This point cannot be over-emphasised. The Apostle Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 13:5 (KJV): “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?” (We should test ourselves to determine if we are true to our faith, and establish if Christ is living in us.)
Paul further wrote in Colossians 1:27 (KJV): “To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
The fact that Christ could actually exist as a inner spirit within us is a wonderful thought. It is a manifestation of His love, and reassures us that we should never feel alone or without hope. Scripture is clear on this point. The writer of Hebrews 13:5 wrote: “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” The Christ in us provides us with a window to view and sample what lies ahead – the promise of eternal life with Christ according to God’s Word.
A passage which is at the centre of the concept of the Christ in us is Galatians 2:20. Paul wrote: “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and 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.” This is awesome scripture.
In Galatians 2:20, Paul is referring to a spiritual death and when one is crucified with Christ, one is expected to renounce all personal goals and aspirations and surrender to the complete and perfect will of God. This is obviously a challenge for us, but we must ignore self-serving agendas and look to God for repentance of our sins and seek the guidance and strength of the Holy Spirit to usher in real change in our lives, and begin a new chapter. We cannot achieve this on our own because the flesh is weak , and alive, and sinful. We require the grace of God…and become crucified with Christ. We must be emptied and filled with the goodness of the Holy Spirit. There is no other way and Paul was clearly providing us with the prescription and methodology.
Paul wrote in Ephesians 3:17 (KJV): “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith.” Paul also wrote in 2 Timothy 1:14 (KJV): “That good thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us.” (We are entrusted with a great treasure and we should protect it with the assistance of the Holy Spirit who lives in us) Amen. Thanks be to God for the sharing of His Word.