Jesus told us many things about who we are in Him if we abide in Him and His words abide in us (John 15:7), but He could not tell His disciples “many things” at that time. Jesus knew they would not understand until the Holy Spirit was sent to them to teach them and lead them “into all truth.”
I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. (John 16:12-13)
When the Holy Spirit came, the apostles were enlightened and understood what Jesus said about the kingdom of God. They preached with all boldness and proclaimed the revelation of Jesus Christ as revealed in the Scriptures. Even the religious leaders were amazed at how such “unlearned and ignorant men” had such wisdom and understanding, but then they realized that it was only because they had been with Jesus.
And Annas the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem. And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this? Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel, If we this day be examined of the good deed done to the impotent man, by what means he is made whole; Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus. (Acts 4:6-13)
Through the writings of Jesus’ disciples, especially Paul, we get a more complete understanding of who we are in Christ because of the inspiration and revelation of the Holy Spirit. May these truths build your faith in Jesus and who you are in Him.
- Accepted of God: “Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him” (Acts 10:34-35).
- Justified before God: “And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses” (Acts 13:39). “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:24).
- Reconciled to God: “For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life” (Romans 5:10).
- Dead to sin but alive unto God: “Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:11).
- Freed and delivered from the body of sin: “For he that is dead [in Christ] is freed from sin” (Romans 6:7). “O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.” (Romans 7:24-25).
- Servants of righteousness: “Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness” (Romans 6:18).
- The children of God: “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God” (Romans 8:16). “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God” (Romans 8:14).
- Heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ: “And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together” (Romans 8:17).
- More than conquerors: “Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:37-39).
- Temple of God where the Holy Spirit dwells: “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his” (Romans 8:9). “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” (I Corinthians 3:16).
- Debtors to God to live by the Spirit and to love others: “Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live” (Romans 8:12-13). “Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law” (Romans 13:8).
- The Lord’s: “For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s” (Romans 14:8).
- Sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be saints: “Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:” (I Corinthians 1: 2).
- Ambassadors for Christ: “Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God” (II Corinthians 5:20).
- Abraham’s seed: “And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise” (Galatians 3:29).
- God’s workmanship: “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works” (Ephesians 2:10).
- A chosen generation, a royal priesthood: “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light” (I Peter 2:9).
- Partakers of the heavenly calling: “Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus” Hebrews 3:1).
- Reproached for Christ: “If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified” (I Peter 4:14).
While these passages of Scripture are not exhaustive on the subject of who we are in Christ, they are important ones upon which to meditate. May you “hear” what the Word is saying to you and may your faith be steadfast.
And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words. For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the stedfastness of your faith in Christ. As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving. Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. (Colossians 2:5)
If you are “in Christ” you have certain positions and authority, but there are also promises and blessings that you have by faith “in Christ.” We will consider some these next time.