"Belonging" in Christ is objectively our when we believe. It is subjectively ours when we believe what God believes.
We’ll cut to the chase. The law is innately exclusionist. It can be nothing else seeing it is part of the separation wrought by Adam’s departure from union with God to the separation that was the parody of life as union with Himself, the thoughts of his own mind and the works of his hands. The law is all about being in or out. The Kingdom of Jesus is about the two being made one. Paul’s thought in Ephesians is not just about Jews and Gentiles. It’s about our inclusion – our secured ‘belonging’ in Jesus Christ. What does this mean? It means we cannot live from the law and belong to the Body of Christ. Not in our spirit. They represent different realms. One is Adam the other is Christ. As a result our belonging is not yes and or maybe. Our belonging in God is yes and yes.
A WAY THAT IS NEW AND ALIVE
This is how the new covenant, ‘Christ our life’ differs from the old ‘obey and live.’ In the old obey and live you are in – disobey and you are out. This is why God progressed us to a ‘better covenant.’ A guaranteed union with God based on Jesus’ obedience rather than our irresolute performance. In this covenant the deal is this: God has obeyed for us in Christ so that we will live in His life. Thus the words ‘Christ our life’ are indicative of our post cross state of being in which we share in Christ’s union with Father and Holy Spirit. Our new covenant life is union with the trinity – and since it is Christ who is the meaning and purpose of the earth (logos), we get to be one in a righteous way with the creation rather than abusers of it.
ONE WITH THE LOGOS
In Christ we are one with the creation as society and as animals, rocks and trees. We participate in this oneness in spirit and in truth if our life is Christ plus nothing. ‘Christ our life’ is a universal statement of inclusion. The addition of ifs and buts to this inclusion negates not bits of this life but all of it. Stick with the law and you are not ‘in’ and your treasure is still in the ground. Your life in God is still there but you have not god it. You participate in this life with a ‘yes’ to Jesus’ gospel and a no to non-gospels. Belonging is simple. Just say, ‘Jesus, I agree that you are my life.’
Moralism, a preoccupation with overcoming sin, our socialisation into a false gospel of the law makes us self-obsessive. Spiritual gifts and an imagined ascent to higher levels in this context can become a ‘badge’ and a form of self-centeredness. When Christ is our life we are free of ourselves, yet really our true selves and liberated because we are hidden in Christ and one with God. We are free to minister spirit and life. Richard Rohr observes,
“Anything that draws you out of yourself in a positive way—for all practical purposes—is operating as God for you at that moment. How else can the journey begin? How else are you drawn forward, now not by idle beliefs but by inner aliveness? God needs something to seduce you out and beyond yourself, so God uses three things in particular: goodness, truth, and beauty. All three have the capacity to draw us into an experience of union.” (1)
Union is already ours. Not something to be earned or striven for by jumping through hoops. Not something that is more on one day than another. Or something that is more in some places than others. It’s a state of being. The description of this union is the Gospel of Christ and you in the Kingdom of God. Baxster Kruger writes,
“The Gospel is the good news of what became of the Son of God and of what became of us in Him. It is the news that Adam and all of us were crucified with Christ, dead and buried, and on the third day Adam and all of us were quickened with new life and raised with Jesus, and then lifted up to the Father’s right hand in Jesus’ ascension and seated with Christ.
What happened on the cross? Why did Jesus die? How do we understand the meaning of His death?
The death of Jesus Christ was part of a seamless movement in which the Triune God laid hold of the human race and decisively and sovereignly altered its very existence, cleansing it of all alienation, quickening it with new life and lifting it up into union with the Father, Son, and Spirit.
It is finished.
(Taken from Dr. C. Baxter Kruger’s brilliant book- Jesus and the Undoing of Adam) (1)Rohr, Richard. The Universal Christ (p. 52). SPCK. Kindle Edition.