Paul’s use of the words ‘Christ our life’ is probably the most comprehensive and all-embracing of The Plan in all of scripture. Because it describes the Reality of our post-cross life in which REALITY IS CHRIST.
TRUTH AND REALITY
Reality is precious in these times – since so many have become adept at making it up. Paul was right again when He wrote, ‘Reality is Christ.’ When T. S. Eliot wrote of ‘head piece filled with straw’ and ‘The center cannot hold’ in The Wasteland, who knew he was prophesying these times?
Not receiving Christ as who He is as Lord – is not entering reality intellectually, socially and politically. Not to acknowledge Jesus Christ as Lord of our life is to acquiesce in futility. It is to become complicit in increasing the power of the ring and the kingdom of the orcs.
Forming for ourselves a false christ, as many American Evangelicals have done, is to reap the futility and social disintegration we are seeing now. Sin has its own reward, particularly when it comes as calling light darkness and darkness light.
HOW CHRIST IS OUR LIFE
Christ is our life vicariously, meaning that He is us vis-à-vis our relationship with Father and Holy Spirit. He is our at-one-ment in that His finished and complete atonement is our expiation judicially of our transgression and guilt. Jesus is union with God. Jesus is our grace in that in Him we are always forgiven for our sins – but more than this we are graced with His life as our life. But there’s more. Christ in us is the channel of the infinite life that is the triune God into our being, marriages, families and work places. Jesus is life in person and not chaotic life I must ad. As the logos Jesus is the divine order – the law of the spirit of life who is love personified.
The incarnation is the living way in which heaven expands in earth.
ALIVE OR GANGRENOUS
We are alive when Christ is our life. Only semi-alive and half dead when anything else is our life.
Jesus Christ is also our alpha and omega. He is the start of our life in God and the completion of this life – except that eternal life has no ending so that in Him we can expect to grow continually into all that is alive. This life in Christ is not a fight. The battle Paul describes is that dualistic conflict in which all who remain in Adam/Moses/Religion/ performance orientation live. Your life in Christ is un-equivocally REST.
ENTER HIS REST
‘Therefore since it still remains for some to enter that rest, and since those who formerly had the good news proclaimed to them did not go in because of their disobedience, God again set a certain day, calling it “Today.” This he did when a long time later he spoke through David, as in the passage already quoted:
‘Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.” For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day. There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works’ Heb 4.6-8 NIV.
YOU ARE ALIVE. NOT IN THIS BODY OF DEATH
John Crowder observes, “Wouldn’t God be a cruel masochist if your entire life were a long, bloody open-heart surgery, where He removed your heart bit by bit? This heart transplant was a one-time transaction. The old is gone; the new has come. Did you know that it was His own heart that He gave you? I am not talking about an amalgamated, pantheistic absorption of your personality. Yes, you do have a unique personality, but it is so melded and united to His that Paul could rightly say the following: I consider myself as having died and now I’m enjoying a new existence which is simply Jesus using my body (Gal. 2:20, DIS). In a very real sense, Christ has replaced you!” (1)
This is why Christ is your life and why, if you are a son and not a slave – you are not inert, stagnant, blind, naked and misguided.