His life as your life


Martin Luther spoke of the ‘great exchange.’ Others have as well. When we speak of Christ our life, of Christ come in our flesh and of incarnation, this is what we are speaking of – Christ becoming us. This is real grace, radical grace. It’s His life as ours which in spirit and truth is our life.

If we take wholeness and holiness seriously and we should, we need a proper understanding of the Lord’s Table. The incarnation is not a spiritual abstraction. It’s as real as you eating your dinner. This is why we have the Lord’s Table – not to mope about His death on the cross. But to remember and rejoice that those who eat Jesus live because His life is their life. The Lord’s Table is a sign and a reminder that normal life is Christ our life. When Jesus instructed us to celebrate the Lord’s Table He was wanting us to realise that His life becomes our life in real time and in every situation. He was saying,

I want to swap you, trade me your sin and will trade you my holiness. Trade me your anxiety, give that to me, and I will give you back my peace. Trade me your doubt and I will give you my faith on your behalf.” We come to that table of grace, and the wonderful exchange occurs whereby Christ asks for what is ours – pitiful, sin-stained, lost, confused, doubting – and he takes it all to himself as precious. He drinks it in that cup of wrath that he drank on our behalf and then slides the cup back to us and we find that it’s filled with the wonderful wine of communion. He gives back to us forgiveness and grace and healing. If our people could understand that when we meet Jesus, he is trading his life for our death, his forgiveness for our sin, I think we’d be transformed.” (1)

This is not something notional and abstract. Jesus becomes you, which is to say that you become your real self as the expression of His person into your being. This, in the Spirit, is eating His flesh and drinking His blood – becoming a manifestation of Jesus because He is literally and actually in your being expressing Himself as Bill, Bob, Georgia and Sarah.

(1) Anderson, Ray; Colyer, Elmer; Dawson, Gerrit; Deddo, Gary; Kettler, Christian; Kruger, Baxter; McKenna, John; McSwain, Jeff; Newell, Roger; Young, Paul. Trinitarian Conversations, Volume 1: Interviews With Ten Theologians (You're Included) (p. 119). Kindle Edition.