As we continue with our book launch of In Christ Alone, we’ve come to our first devotional. “In Christ” we can truly experience deliverance from our past and enjoy a very hopeful and blessed future, to say the least.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
2 Corinthians 5:17
It’s only fitting to start our journey with the verse that truly defines it. When we are in Christ, “the old has passed away” and “the new has come.” Elsewhere Paul described this dramatic change as follows: “He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Col. 1:13-14). When we were born again, we went from darkness to light.
Just like a newborn baby has no clue about all the implications of having just been born, even so we are mostly clueless about the great transformation that took place when we were saved—from being separated from Christ, “having no hope and without God in the world” (Eph. 2:12), to being “in Christ,” having become a partaker of Him. There are no other options in this life or throughout eternity besides these two.
What does it mean that “the old has passed away” and “the new has come”? In describing this eternity-altering change, Paul wrote: “We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin” (Rom. 6:6). When we are “in Christ,” we’ve become partakers of His death and resurrection. In a very real sense we died and rose with Him.
Therefore, having died with Christ is the perfect equivalent to the old having passed away, and having risen with Him is synonymous with the new that has come. That’s why Paul also stated: “So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 6:11). We went from spiritual deadness—being separated from Christ—to spiritual life—being in Him.
Lastly, this is in reference to anyone. It doesn’t matter if we’re bright or not so bright, rich or poor, young or old, famous or obscure. When one is “in Christ,” there’s an indissolvable union with Him that will take us through this earthly life and endless ages, experiencing all that He has accomplished and obtained for us.
The Devotional Writer
P.S. coming soon: “Battling Sexual Temptations and Sins: Overcoming through God’s Word and Spirit.” There are 40 short devotionals, encouraging and equipping you in this battle.