We know that when we were “born-again”; God came to live inside of us an now he “Will never leave you or forsake you.” But, Jesus was very intentional with his instructions to the faithful 11 disciples to “Abide IN me”.
John 14-17 mentions this concept of “In Christ” throughout because his emphasis was not on getting them “born-again” at this point but; teaching them how to follow the Spirit. These passages are the only Scriptures before Paul’s Epistles that clearly express how to we live like Christ after being born-again!
Yes, the “Sermon on The Mount” details instructions of a Godly life but, “The Last Supper” gives practical principles for remaining “IN Christ”. Realistically; trying to start from the S.O.M will probably create more striving in the flesh than abiding in the Spirit (speaking from experience). Because we need to “Remain in the vine to bear much fruit.”
The first and most important principle to remaining in the vine is knowing how we are connected to Christ. I am not detailing how to be “born-again” but, what it means now that you have been “born-again.”
BORN ON THE VINE ~
“for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God.” (1 Peter 1:23)
1 Peter 1:3 details that it was through Jesus rising from the dead that we were given life because we were literally joined with him in the spirit in his death and resurrection 2,000 years ago! (Ephesians 2:4-6, Romans 6:3-11)
Jesus was the Word of God in the Flesh like a seed that was sown into the ground, died, conquered death and now the Holy root of our beings that is the Kingdom of God like a tree filling the entire earth!
Jesus made it very clear that his message was “The Word of the Kingdom.”He also made it clear that understanding this parable was crucial to understanding any parables!
We have been born into the Kingdom and we grow mature and bear eternal fruits by abiding in the Spirit. Because “the Kingdom of God is… righteousness, joy and peace IN the Holy Spirit.”
There are so many promises and declarations about the one “in Christ” (Notice many times in Ephesians 1) that seemed to be a complete contradiction to my life; even as a born-again believer with the Holy Spirit until I understood who is “In Christ”.
Everything that was expressed above about being joined, crucified and risen/born with Christ is speaking of the spiritual realm; or “in the spirit”. This is the unseen dimension of God where he rules with all authority and power and we are joined to him in spirit.
When I first heard this verse taught I didn’t believe it really meant what it said. But as always; God is true even if everyone else is a liar…even our own minds!
We are forever joined to the Lord in spirit. Not simply Holy Spirit and our spirit in one “place” but, married to Almighty God and 2 spirits have become one! This is the new creation that never existed before Jesus’ awesome work! The spirit is the one “IN Christ” in which all things have become new!
REMAIN ON THE VINE~
Now we “put on the new man, that after God hath been created in righteousness and holiness of truth.” This is abiding in the vine; remaining in Christ! Because Christ is IN us (our Temple being) and we are joined to him but, we must remain in him by recognizing him as our permanent righteous identity. (Previous blog about our permanent righteous spirit)
We must know how we are one with him and let that truth become so grounded in our hearts and minds that no lying wind or storm can shake our belief from who we are in him!
“If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. 3For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.”
It’s great that our spirit is alive with Christ forever but, we want to keep our thoughts focused on who we now are “IN HIM” until we see His Kingdom established in every area of our lives!
When we do this; we will begin to see his fruits of righteousness, gifts, power and authority manifest in more areas of our lives because “The Kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of POWER ~ 1 Cor.4:20.