I recently loved doing a Facebook Live Q&A about my book, God’s Best-Kept Secret. This was hosted by Pastor Adam Herald and his wife, Tanya, from The Refuge Church in Windham, Maine. During this time, the audience submitted excellent questions, including Linda, who asked, “Please unpack being in Christ and Christ in me.” What a great question that has a terrific answer!
The Biblical idea of being in Christ is much more than just meaning “I’m a Christian.” In fact, did you know that the phrase “in Christ” or its equivalent is used ten times more than the phrase “Christ in you?” Why did the Holy Spirit emphasize this ten times more? Is it more important? It’s not, but it is still essential to understand the difference. Yet, unfortunately, most Christians have not been taught its meaning.
This phrase richly describes what we have been given in Christ and who we are in Christ. Chapters 1-3 in Ephesians is one of the most concise explanations of this. This phrase is used 35 times in Ephesians alone. Ephesians 1:3 first uses it by saying this, Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.
How many spiritual blessings has Father blessed us with? EVERY ONE! Where are our blessings located? IN CHRIST!
The following few verses begin to list many of those blessings IN CHRIST. Here are some examples.
4 ab For he chose us in him before the world’s creation to be holy and blameless in his sight. He chose you before anything existed in this universe, which should make you feel very special to Him! You were on His mind back then. He also says that when He looks at you every day, He sees you as always holy and finds no blame in you. Wow!
4 C In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. According to John 8:44, you were once a child of Satan. Our Father removed you from that family and legally adopted you into His family, which was paid for by the blood of Jesus. Sonship here is not a gender issue. Instead, it refers to our identity in Christ in that we are like our Father. He has given us His character at the moment of salvation through being in Christ.
7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace. What mind-boggling blessings we are shown here! We have redemption, meaning we have been bought back from Satan by the perfect payment of the blood of Jesus on the cross. We also have forgiveness for our sins. Where are our redemption and forgiveness located? In Christ! Where are we who believe in Jesus located? In Him! This means that we can never lose our magnificent value before our Father because Jesus’s blood paid the price to redeem us. It also means that when we believe in Jesus as our Savior, we can relax in the ocean of our eternal forgiveness for every past, present, and future sin. We can never be removed from this ocean because our forgiveness is in Christ, and so are we!
Regarding Christ in us, let me ask you a question. What was the purpose of Jesus coming to live inside of you? Was it to make you alive for the first time through salvation? Yes! But I think there is another reason. How about to love you from the inside in a relational way? He concluded His prayer in John 17:26 with this promise to His Father. I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them. Our Father’s love for us is in us because Christ is in us. This is not simply a fact but an invitation to all of us to interact with Christ in us throughout the day.
Being in Christ and Christ being in us is all about the amazing grace of our union with Him! Rejoice!
Do you want to go deeper in the freedom of Christ in you and you in Him? If you have never attended, register for our upcoming Freedom Conference here. Seating is limited.
© Mark Maulding (But feel free to share this.)