I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me (KJV).
Introduction: This is a verse I memorized during my college days; I’ve been mulling over it for thirty-five years, and I think it summarizes my philosophy of the Christian life better than any other verse I know. It speaks of Christian living in three dimensions.
1. The Relinquished Life
Galatians 2:20 tells us the Christian life is a relinquished life: I am crucified with Christ. That means that we have come to the old rugged cross; and, deeply moved, we turn aside from the kind of life we once lived and take our stand beneath the cross of Jesus. We die to our old selves, to our sin, and to the world; and we identify with Him.
2. The Exchanged Life
…nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me…. It was Hudson Taylor who first called this the Exchanged Life. The idea is this: None of us can ever live the Christian life in our own strength and power. None of us can resist temptation by our own will-power and determination. None of us can love as we should just by our own efforts. Only Jesus Christ can successfully live the genuine victorious Christian life–it is, after all, His life–but when we come to Him in full surrender, He invades us by His Holy Spirit and He begins living His life through us.
3. The Trusting Life
The verse goes on to say: …and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. The Bible says: “This is the victory that overcomes the world, even our faith.” Romans 1:17 tells us that the Christian Life is one of faith from first to last, for it is written the just shall live by faith.
Conclusion: Relinquished, Exchanged, Trusting. This is the formula for the Victorious Christian Life.
PS – For my entire message on this verse, click here.