Living By Faith In The Son Of God

  By Rich Carmicheal

    “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son…” (John 3:16). 

    What could be of any greater worth to God than His own dear Son?  Those of us with children in our lives understand how precious a child is.  But in the case of God’s heart for His Son, the value is infinitely greater.  Their relationship is eternal – “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  He was in the beginning with God” (John 1:1-2).  Their love is eternal – “for Thou didst love Me ­before the foundation of the world” (John 17:24).  Their unity is perfect – “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30); “…the Father is in Me, and I in the Father” (John 10:38).  Their glory is mutual – “And [the Son] is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His ­nature” (Heb. 1:3; cf. Col. 1:15); “And now glorify Thou Me together with Thyself, Father, with the glory which I ever had with Thee before the world was” (John 17:5).

Sent into the World

    God sent this Son – this beloved Son of infinite glory and worth – into the world to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins (1 John 4:9-10).  “The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).    Though Jesus emptied Himself in becoming a man, the bond between Father and Son remained just as complete.  The Father openly expressed this at Jesus’ baptism:  “And behold, a voice out of the heavens, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased’” (Matt. 3:17).  And likewise, at the time when Jesus was transfigured before Peter, James and John, “…and His face shone like the sun, and His garments became as white as light,” the Father revealed His heart for His Son:  “…Behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and behold, a voice out of the cloud, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to Him!’” (see Matthew 17:1-8).

The Cross

    And yet, God did not spare His Son, “…but delivered Him up for us all…” (Rom. 8:32).  What greater sacrifice could God make and what greater love could He demonstrate?  And what greater sacrifice could Jesus make, what greater love could He show, than to lay down His life for us in full keeping with His Father’s will?

    Oh what infinite value there is in the sacrifice of the Son of God!  His blood is “precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless” (1 Pet. 1:19), blood that is able to cleanse us from all sin (1 John 1:9).  In Him “we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.  …For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross…” (Col. 1:14, 19-20).

    “Surely our griefs He Himself bore, and our sorrows He carried; …He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, and by His scourging we are healed.  All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; but the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him” (Isa. 53:4-6).

    As we put our faith in the Son of God and His sacrifice on the Cross on our behalf, how grateful we can be for the forgiveness of sin and the gift of eternal life God grants to us through Him!  Surely we owe all that we are to Him.  May our passion be to “live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me, and delivered Himself up for me” (Gal. 2:20). 

Resurrection Power

    Living such a devoted life is possible not only because Jesus laid down His life for us as the Son of God, but also because He “was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead…” (Rom. 1:4).  God, through the working of the strength of His might, “…raised [Christ] from the dead, and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in the one to come” (Eph. 1:19-21).  And the same power which God used when He raised His Son from the dead is now at work in us who believe! (vv. 19-20).

    So not only is Jesus’ death at work in us, but His resurrection power as well!  “For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall be also in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, that our body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin; for He who has died is freed from sin.  …For the death that He died, He died to sin, once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God.  Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 6:5-11).

    As the Apostle John reminds us, “The one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning.  The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8).  We have been rescued from the domain of darkness and brought into the kingdom of the beloved Son (Col. 1:13).  We have been set free, and as Jesus Himself declares, “If therefore the Son shall make you free, you shall be free indeed”! (John 8:36).

    Are you struggling with sin and with the world?  The key to victory is found in the Son of God:  “Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” (1 John 5:5).  Fix your thoughts on Him.  Let the power of His death and the power of His resurrection work in you.  He is “to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption” (1 Cor. 1:30).  As believers in Christ, “God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son” (1 John 5:11).  “He who has the Son has the life…” (v. 12).

Christ In Us

    And not only is our life in the Son, but He is our life! (Col. 3:4).  As believers who have united with Christ in His death and resurrection, we share in this marvelous truth expressed by the Apostle Paul:  “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me…” (Gal. 2:20).  The key to spiritual life is Christ Himself abiding in us through His Spirit (John 14:19-20; Rom. 8:10-11; Col. 1:27-29).

    Just think of the power of the One living in us.  By Him “…all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities – all things have been created by Him and for Him” (Col. 1:16).  All power and authority in heaven and on earth is entrusted to Him (Matt. 28:18), and He “upholds all things by the word of His power” (Heb. 1:3).

    No wonder the Apostle Paul asserts, “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me” (Phil. 4:13).  And no wonder he prays that the Father “…would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man; so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God” (Eph. 3:16-19).

    Think about what it means to have the mind of Christ, the righteousness of Christ, the holiness of Christ, the love of Christ, the peace of Christ, the strength of Christ, the victory of Christ, the perseverance of Christ, the righteousness of Christ – to have Christ Himself living and working in you!  Because of Him we can be set free from sin and self, and begin to live fully for the glory of God!  No matter what the challenges, no matter what the trials, we are able to overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loves us (Rom. 8:37).

Christ’s Intercession

    Keep in mind also that the Son “has taken His seat at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens” and that He ever lives to make intercession for us (Heb. 7:24 – 8:2; Rom. 8:34).  As our Great High Priest He sympathizes with us, and through Him we can “draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need” (see Hebrews 4:14-16).  He is able to save us completely! (Heb. 7:25). 

Live for His Glory

    Praise God for the gift of love and life that we have through His Son.  Let us renew our faith in Christ, and press in all the more to “know Him, and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings…” (Phil. 3:10).  As He intercedes for us at the right hand of the Father, and as He lives in us through His Spirit, may we in all things honor Him and live for His glory.  In doing so, we also honor the Father who sent Him (John 5:23).

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    What a great blessing it is to join together with you through the ministry of Herald of His Coming – and all the more as His Return draws near (Heb. 10:25).  We hope this issue strengthens you in the Lord, and we thank you for all of your encouragement, support and prayer.  We hope to hear from you soon! 

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