"...That Life Which I Now Live..."
I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer that I live,
but Christ liveth in me: and that life which I now live in the flesh,
I live in faith, the faith which is in the Son of God,
who loved me, and gave himself for me.
In the first century, a man who followed Christ was being beaten because of his love for the Lord. His abusers asked him, “What can your Jesus do for you now?” He said, “My Jesus can give me the power to forgive you.”
A family was concerned when a storm had surrounded their house. A little boy entered the living room and noticed the anxious looks. He said, “Be not afraid. Jesus will take care of us.”
A young lady was dating a fellow who wanted more than a kiss and a hug. He tried to persuade her by saying, “Let’s have some fun.” She replied, “Would Jesus ask his girlfriend to do what you are asking me to do?”
As Christians living “in the flesh,” we are exposed to many temptations. Our desires can be seduced by the appeals of the world, and can lead to sin and guilt. Therefore, we cannot take lightly what we do while living in this “earthly house of our tabernacle” (2 Corinthians 5:1). We must realize the risks involved as Christians living “in the flesh.” We are connected to this world by flesh and bones, a body which is the wonderful workmanship of God (Psalm 139:13-16). Those crucified with Christ see their body as “a temple of the Holy Spirit, which is in you, which ye have from God, and ye are not your own; for ye are bought with a price: glorify God therefore in your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19,20). Our body should be a willing servant of our spiritual nature. The power enabling you and I to “live in the flesh” and at the same time have “Christ living in me” is FAITH.
Faith is not the only instrument which justifies us before God (Romans 5:1,2), although it is the foundation of our life in Christ. Faith supports the virtues of knowledge, self-control, brotherly kindness, courage, patience, godliness, and love (2 Peter 1:5-7). It is the energy that causes us to exercise our senses to do that which pleases God (Hebrews 11:6). We “live by faith,” “walk by faith,” “stand by faith,” “overcome by faith,” “sanctified by faith,” and “kept by faith” unto the salvation revealed by God at the last day (1 Peter 1:5). Faith is the positive side to a negative world. It unites the soul with the Savior. It is the pipeline through which grace is supplied to the soul. It gives life more than a profession by providing a “manner of life.”
The ultimate goal of the “manner of life” is eternal life. “But godliness is profitable for all things, having the promise of this life that now is, and of that which is to come” (1 Timothy 4:8). It behooves us to listen to the word of the Master Teacher for “I know that his commandment is life eternal” (John 12:50). Jesus paved the way to eternal glory (Hebrews 12:2). It now lies within us to follow him there.