In our Christian little world we often hear familiar sentences, but when it comes to explaining them to other people, you need to think it through for a while. For instance: to be in Christ…
Somehow we know what is meant, but how do we define this: I am in Christ, Christ within me
Drinking the Cup
These sentences have everything to do with God’s immeasurable Grace. Grace comes from the Hebrew word Chen, which means grace or favor, also the Jiddish word ‘gein’, meaning joyful stems from this root. The Greek word for joy is chairo.
To receive grace makes you happy, grace gives joy. And grace has everything to do with ‘being in Christ.’
Before Jesus died on the Cross He wrestled in the Garden of Gethsemane, wrestling with the cup He had to drink. What kind of cup was it? The cup full of sin, dirt and filth of all mankind. Also your cup with all the filth, sorrow, pain and sin. Jesus will drink this cup on the Cross of Calvary, that is… when you are willing to hand this cup over to Him.
He will take it to the Cross, in your place. That is what God is seeing: In Christ you are hanging there on the Cross. God sees you in His Son on the Cross. In Christ you receive forgiveness and you are set free. He pays the price for your eternal life. All your sin in that cup is washed away and you are set free.
Then Jesus says: ‘All that is mine, will be yours. I give it to you before I die. I will drink all that is in your cup and instead I give you all My righteousness, all My purity, My perfection and holiness. And also My love, faithfulness and grace. Your cup that Jesus had to empty, is now filled with all that He has given you in return. And when God is looking to you He sees His Son
in you because you are made righteous in Jesus’ sacrifice.
The beginning of your identity in Christ
First God sees you in His Son, hanging on the Cross and after the Resurrection He sees His Son in you. When He is looking at you He sees His perfect Son. You are forgiven and set free in Christ and because of that Christ is the beginning of a life in
freedom, growth and grace. The beginning of your identity in Christ. Jesus made grace tangible, it was an act of love. By His grace we have been given joy and freedom.
Now you can continue your life and walk around carrying your cup filled with all that Jesus has given you, but you have the privilege to also drink this cup, which means that you may own all that He has given to you.
After Jesus rose from the dead He meets with Peter and we see that Peter realizes that a miracle has happened. Three times he denied Jesus, three times Jesus asks him: ‘Peter, do you love Me?’ And again Jesus asked him the question He also asked in the beginning: ‘Follow Me!’
Peter had to drink the cup with everything that Jesus had given him, in order for him to live in a renewed relationship with Christ. To live by grace. To follow and live out of forgiveness, in a renewed identity.
This grace is your salvation and it will give you direction. You will learn to live a holy life. Because everything of Christ is in me, and that is a process. We need to learn and grow in it. New clothes are always a little uneasy in the beginning. That’s the same with our new identity. You’ll hardly recognize yourself and at the same time you begin to be transformed in how
you’re meant to be. The grace of Christ in me and I am in Christ and that gives freedom. But that freedom is always linked with Christ. And it will always be: more of Him and less of me. That’s how you will get room to grow in Christ.
Process of renewing our minds
Ephesians 3:16-20 is a prayer for you. It explains this growing process.
‘I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.’
This process will also renew our mind, as we can read in Ephesians 4. You will more and more behave like Christ within you. And know that you are hidden in Christ. You are accepted and may live according to the way God sees you in Christ. You can relax by living through His Spirit and the fruit of the Spirit will grow in your life.
To be in Christ is your destiny and your calling. Go live for Him according to this calling and know that His grace is more than enough.
Read also: To be conformed in the image of Jesus & Living Out of Our True Identity