Now if we died with Christ we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:8-11, NKJV)
And I have been crucified with The Messiah, and from then on I myself have not been living, but The Messiah is living in me, and this that I now live in the flesh, I live by the faith of The Son of God, he who has loved us and has given himself for us. (Galatians 2:20, Aramaic Bible in Plain English)
I read a line from Milt Rodriguez’ book New Day today, that has stopped me in my tracks. The book is written in the first person as though Jesus is speaking and I’d like to quote a portion of it to you that relates to the above scriptures.
When I was hanging on the cross of Calvary, you were crucified with me. There were many things placed upon me on that cross; sin, the sin nature, the world system, the devil and his angels, all law, the old creation and death itself. Oh yes, and one other thing was placed upon me while I was hanging on that cross; YOU! So that now means that you are dead to all of those things; sin, the sin nature, the world, the devil, law, the old creation, death, and yourself. You are now free from all of those things because you have died to all of those things. How free is a dead man? He is completely free! Oh, and one other thing. You have also been raised with me! So this means that you are now also alive, but you are only alive to me and in me. You are dead to all except me and my new creation.
Of-course it makes sense right, that since we are dead to the world, the world system, the devil, sin, the sin nature but have been made alive unto God, then it really is true that He is the only one to whom we are alive. We’re dead to everything that isn’t God and that includes being dead to ourselves.
So what have we been doing all these years? We’ve been pleasing ourselves, pleasing others, being swayed by opinions, concerning ourselves with governments and laws, labouring under standards and expectations of the world and the religious system, following our own plans and what we think is best. Our interests, energy and concerns have been taken up with dead stuff! What a waste of time.
Since we are dead to all those things and alive only unto God, what does that mean for us? Well it means we really and truly live for an audience of One then, don’t we? It means there’s only One opinion that matters. There’s only One judgement that matters. There’s only One direction that matters. There’s only One purpose that matters. There’s One government, there’s One King, there’s One power, there’s One Life, there’s One Truth, there’s One Way and there’s One Standard.
This makes our living, profoundly simple. We needn’t argue or compare ourselves with the things of the world because we are dead to them. We needn’t rally against the world because we are dead to it. We needn’t take on the standards of others because we have One standard that we live by, that standard is Christ. We needn’t be concerned with what others think because we have One judge. We needn’t perform for others because we have only One audience member.
And when we come together, because we are all alive unto God in Christ Jesus, we share His life together in a grander way, a more powerful way. The profoundly simple way of living is profoundly simple in the life of the church corporate. Together we display Christ, together we serve One King, together we share One Life, together we declare One Truth, together we delight in Him who is our One interest and together we discern only His judgement and direction. Together we follow only His purpose.
And we remind one another of this truth. We remind one another that we are dead to all the other things, and in doing so we spiritually wash one another’s feet from the dirt and concerns of the world – which is dead to us. We remind one another, as we display Him together, that we have One Lord, One Faith, One Master.
This is a new and Living way folks, walk we in it 🙂