Life in Christ
I find that many people are trying to figure out what life is all about. According to the news and statistics, even our youth today are trying to figure out this question, “Why am I here?” This is why so many of our youth commit suicide. They don't understand “life”.
Sometimes in my life, I think about my life and how I might improve the quality of life. I ask, “What would make me happy?” I am then reminded of King Solomon and the reflection on his life he made. This is found in the book of Ecclesiastes. He actually tried it all, music & entertainment, farming, industry, knowledge, books, etc. , everything “under the sun”. His summation is found in Ecclesiastes 12:13,14, “fear God and keep His commandments, for that is the whole duty of man”. I can’t tell you how many times I have read that book, because most of us have sought the answer to improving our life through one of these mediums, only to find ourselves right where Solomon did, “vanity and vexation of the spirit”. This is similar to my response so many times, for people with failed marriages, “You went shopping in all the wrong places for your mate”.
So where should we go for our answer? Why not seek it from the Creator, after all He is responsible for my existence and yours. Solomon said "(1) Fear God, and (2) Keep His commandments". So we all have some responsibility to God, if we are to find happiness. So what has He said?
Matthew 17: 1-5 God said on the mount that we are to hear His Son, Jesus the Christ. In Hebrews 1:1-13, God through the writer, mentions all the ways He had spoken to men in the past, but then again states that we are to hear His Son. His Son has all authority now, Matthew 28:18-20, both in Heaven and on Earth. He authorized His disciples to teach us what to do in service to Him and His Father. John 14: 10-21 and John 16: 5-16 tell us that the apostles chosen by Christ were given authority, in place of Christ after His return to His Father. They travelled the world teaching the truth, including those things pertaining to life. Their writings are here with us to this day, to lead us on our path of life.
They were to be led by the Spirit of God, the Holy Spirit, to guide men into all truth. 1 Corinthians 2:11 explains how this works in common terms. The Spirit of God reveals the mind of God to men, the apostles, who teach us and give us the mind of Christ, vs. 12-16. It was the work of the apostles to teach men. In Matthew 28:18-20, we find one of the texts referred to as the "Great Commission". These apostles were sent to the world to preach the gospel of Christ, to observe all things commanded, and baptizing men into Christ, for the remission of sin. (Mark 16:15-16) An example of this was on Pentecost in Acts 2. These men were convicted of their sinful life, vs. 37, and wanted to know what to do. Their sin was apparent and they wanted relief. Vs. 38 gives us the answer given to them, "Repent and be baptized everyone of you for the remission of your sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit"! Ephesians 2:15 explains what the gift of the Holy Spirit is, the earnest of our inheritance, or home in Heaven, and eternal life. To receive this, there were pre-requisites, Faith seen in these men's question for the apostles, Repentance demanding remorse for their actions and commitment to follow Christ and His teachings, and baptism the means of removing their sin and starting a new life following Christ's life. Follow the thought here. We believe Christ is the Son of God, the Messiah, the Saviour of men. Next, these men knew of the burden of sin, and it was understandable they'd want to turn from a life with sinning and serve God, "repentance". Even then, their past was apparent feeling the guilt of crucifying Christ, just a few weeks earlier. Even though they were remorseful, the guilt is there. If only we could get rid of the guilt of our sin! Baptism, I can, through the sacrificial blood of Christ, I can wash it away in water baptism, and in faith realize the blood washed my sins away and I am redeemed! I raise up from the water to live a newness of life! (Romans 6:3-5) To live the life that Christ showed me how to live. A life that God approved, "In whom I am well pleased". If we "Love Christ" we will "Keep His commandments"John 14:15. 1 John 5:11, Eternal life is in the Son of God, the example He lived for us to follow. Note these other passages referring to this life: John 3:16; John 5:20; John 6:23 (A reference I believe to the Lord's Supper and what it symbolizes.); Galatians 2:20-my life living in the teachings of the Son, resulting in His life being lived in me; and 1 John 5:20- we understand the life of Christ, the submissive obedience to God's Will as exemplified and taught by the Son, Christ.
Are you willing to live the life of Christ, being in Christ? Many have for it's simplicity. Christ chose to live according to His Father's direction/will. We must choose to do so likewise, faithfully, unwavering. Hate sin like Christ and God does, and turn in obedience to God.
We invite you to study with us at the Church of Christ here in Macon, Hwy. 63 South. I invite you to visit our website; www.histruth.net , and study with us there at your leisure. Thanks for opening your hearts to God's Word with us.