Classic Christianity – A Closer Look at Your Identity in Christ P24 (05-04-22)
Jesus Wants to Set You Free. For Freedom He Has Set You Free.
“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” Galatians 5:1
Just as a person’s physical growth is based on proper diet and exercise, so is the Christians’s spiritual growth dependent on regular feeding upon the word of God and application of its principles. With more false teaching, shifting opinions and general confusion in the world than ever before, Christians need a solid foundation upon which to base their beliefs and build their lives. The word of God declares that Jesus Christ is that foundation of truth. With that in mind, let’s now take A Closer Look at Your Identity in Christ.
So when you’re talking about receiving forgiveness of sins through His name, that means all of the authority of Heaven and Earth have been given to you and me to be able to say I have received forgiveness of sins. He gave me the authority to be able to say that in His name by His authority, He gave me the authority to be able to say, I believe your authority. And so it’s a wonderful thing that we have here that we have forgiveness. It isn’t the case that I get forgiven anymore. I am a forgiven Saint.
Now in Acts 26:17 and 18. It says, I am sending you to them to open their eyes, to turn them from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God. So that what? That they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.
Now I want to take a look at that passage of scripture last week. We spent a long time talking about light and darkness, and there’s a reason for that. That in 1st John, where people have used this 1st John 1:9 passage brought it over to a believer, and literally paralyzed our understanding of the finality of the cross. With that verse of scripture out of context, the understanding of that scripture and the realization that 1st John 1:8 and 9 is a matter of fact, that first whole first chapter of John was not written to Christians. It was written to a Christian pastor, who was to read that passage to people, some of whom were Christians, just like an assembly today, but a great number of people in that group called gnostics, who did not believe that Jesus came in the flesh, He was an illusion and did not believe that you had a sin nature. And so, there was a contrast in that first chapter to light and darkness. If we claim to be in fellowship with God and yet walk in darkness. Well how can you walk someplace unless that’s where you are? It says we deceive ourselves, the truth is not in us.
Light and darkness is always without exception, there is no exception to that in the scriptures, always lost and saved. It is not a saved person who has backslid. It is, if you’re in darkness, there’s only one reason you’re in darkness, and that means you’ve never been in light, because if you are in the light as Christ Jesus is in the light. So if Christ is in the light, and I’m in Christ, and Christ is in me. Where am I? Well I’m in the light. And for me to get in darkness, he would have to get in darkness, if Christ is in me, and I am in Him and I am a new creation, then He’s going to have to get in darkness for me to get there. But instead of that, it says that if you are in the light as Christ Jesus is in the light, there’s a byproduct of that. Again, a result folks, we have fellowship with one another. You and Jesus have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus is Son, the blood of Jesus, His Son continually keeps on cleansing you of all sins. In other words, there’s no way to get in darkness because of the continual cleansing power of Christ Jesus. Now that cleansing power does not come from our asking, our begging, or our even being aware of it. It is a byproduct of being in the light.
Bob years ago I was involved when I was in sales with a company that used to handle a product. It was a gas range. I was not involved in that. But it was a gas range where they said something. They called it, it was called the Ultra Ray. And what that was was a new type of heating element, whereby you could broil. And the element would alleviate the sparks, what comes off of meat? When you’re cooking it? All of the debris that comes off. You can’t remember either. The grease, it is the grease splatters out of the meat, is immediately just eradicated. It just ate it up. And so, you literally could cook all kinds of things in that oven, and never have to clean your oven because when the grease would splatter, it would just take care of it. Now, that grease splattering, equating that to sin, that Ultra Ray is what ate up the grease. It had nothing to do with the meat, the meat produced the grease, but the Ultra Ray alleviated it. Now, what was that as a result of? Being in the oven. That’s all that meat had to do to get the grease eradicated from what was cooking. Was being in the oven.
Now, when I am in Christ, that’s what you’re talking about if you’re in the light, as He Christ Jesus is in the light, there’s a by-product of that. The blood of Jesus will continually keep on cleansing you of every sin imaginable. In other words, if you’re in, if you are now, having been translated out of darkness into light that Ultra Ray got you and every sin is going to be eradicated by the blood of Jesus. Has nothing to do with the meat. Meat didn’t cause that it’s the Ultra Ray that’s causing it. In other words, it’s not because of what I do. It’s because of what Jesus has promised. Right.
So getting back to what we’re talking about here is in Acts 26. He said, I’m sending you to them to open their eyes, turn them from darkness to light, from lost to saved, from the power of Satan lost again. You see it would be like saying that to turn them from darkness and the power of Satan, to light to God. In other words, it just amplifies what you’re talking about, always lost and say, why does he want to turn them from darkness, to light, from the power of Satan to God? So that they can receive forgiveness of sins. It’s a byproduct of walking into the light, the very moment that you come to Christ for who He is, Christ, you receive something. Forgiveness. What’s a Christian world trying to do? Bring down people down the aisles to get forgiven. And can you see why we are so feeble in our understanding of their lives? Because you see, they already had a system like that called atonement, where you could go get forgiven. So you don’t come to Christ to just get forgiveness. You come to Him for His life, to be translated out of darkness.
What are you telling people? You a sinner, you need forgiven. No, you’re in darkness and you need light. You’re under the kingdom of Satan and the power of Satan. You need to turn to Christ. You need to come alive. You don’t have life. You need to have life. That’s the message of salvation. Not come and get forgiven because there’s no forgiveness in coming to get forgiven. You come to get the forgiver, not the forgiveness, and we have our eyes constantly on the gift, instead of the Giver of salvation is a gift. It’s a gift from who, from God. Christ is the provider. Salvation is a byproduct. I come to Christ. I receive salvation. I don’t come to salvation to get Christ. I come to Christ and in Him, I have salvation. So we’ve got everything backwards. We’re streaming people down aisles to get the by product instead of getting the source. And so we come away all feeling good. Hey, I just got forgiven. I just got forgiven. Well, that’s fine. Wait till next Sunday. Then you go down and get it again, you see? And so we’re just, it was great for the carpet business. We’re just walking aisles all the time, getting forgiven and forgiven and forgiven. And then if we’re not in that realm, wait, then we’re at home keeping ourselves forgiven. And oh God, please forgive me again. Thank you. Forgive me. Forgive me, forgive me. And what are we doing? We don’t realize, we’ve already received the Forgiver. The Forgiver lives in you and if the Forgiver lives in you, you already are forgiven. Why? Because of the Forgiver. So He was sent to them to turn them from darkness, to Light, from being lost to God. So that as I come to God, I receive forgiveness of sins and in Christ a place among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.
Now, again, sanctification is not one of those words, like, we’ve made it into where you walk around with your Bible under your arm, your head tilted to one side looking glassy-eyed and half stupid. That is not what sanctification is all about. Sanctification is a very practical word. It means that you have been set apart for the divine purpose that God created you. If you’re looking at your watch right now, you’re sanctifying your watch, you are using it for the purpose that it was created. If you have shoes on your feet, you’re sanctifying your shoes, you’re using them for the purpose that they were meant to be using them according to the purpose that they were manufactured.
And so when you and I come to Christ into His life, entering into His into Him, who is light. I will never be in darkness again because He’s never going to be, never has been a darkness. So I will be in light for the rest of my life. I will be the receiver of forgiveness for the rest of my life. I have received a place among all of those who are set apart by faith in Me. So the very moment I place my faith in Him I was set apart from where? The entire world. In other words, from the unbelieving world you and I have been set apart. We’re believers. Now, we are believers in Christ Jesus. We have now been partakers of the divine nature of Christ Himself. As I said, we talked about totally forgiven, totally righteous, reconciled, redeemed, sanctified, justified, made into the body of Christ a citizen in heaven with it in life and totally love. And that’s not too bad. It’s a great diet. And God made us into those things. That’s a byproduct. I don’t come to get those already, I got them if I am in Christ in Him, all of those things have become ours.
So I’m not sanctified because I made myself sanctified. As a matter of fact, anyone out trying to sanctify yourself is saying that what Jesus did when He sanctified you was not good enough, which is incidentally the same thing that people are doing when they’re trying to keep themselves forgiven. You’re saying that His death on the cross was not good enough. They said, oh no, He died back then but you still have to ask. Well, I’m sorry, but if I have to ask Him for forgiveness today in order to execute it, what would He have to do, if without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness? Well, I’d have to die again. Didn’t he say I’m not going to do that? So the issue is I did that once and that blood of God was of such nature that had covered forever, took away forever the sins of the entire world. So the very moment I came to what He is still doing His resurrected life. His life is still in existence, the Holy Spirit of God, coming to men and women, boys and girls all over the world saying, come on, come to Me. Be raised from the dead. Come unto Me. Open up your heart. Come to Me. That’s a living thing. What He did at the cross, He did 2000 years ago. What He’s doing today is ongoing. Now when we come to Him, we receive forgiveness of sins and a place, a place, a permanent place. Where is that? In the light transferred for the power of Satan to God, that’s a place that you and I are in a place among all of those who have been set apart by faith in Me.
Now, Colossians, 1:13 and 14 amplifies that for he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness. Well, what’s a dominion? Dominion is place you live in. That’s it. That’s like your dominion is the country you live in. We were living in the dominion of darkness. We were born there. You and I were not born in light, spiritual life. We were born in darkness. And so, He rescued us from that old inheritance, that dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son He loves. In other words, brought us into the kingdom of Jesus Christ in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
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Now what is redemption and forgiveness of sins? It is a byproduct of being brought into the kingdom of Jesus Christ. So the very moment that you stepped out of Adam, that’s the dominion of darkness, into Christ into light, you have, at that moment, redemption. You’ve been bought, the forgiveness of sins. Now I would ask you a question folks. How many of you right now, we are in Christ, sit down and ask God to redeem you every day, begging Him to redeem you everyday? Go to a booth to get redemption? Go to an altar to get redemption? If you’ve already been redeemed, I’m talking about if you’ve already been saved, how many of you do that? And I’d venture to say, any of you unless you have an awfully feeble knowledge of the word of God would say none of us do that. Well, why would I ask God to redeem me if He already has? He’s already redeemed me. He’s already bought me.
Redemption came from to redeem, to be bought back from like the slave markets. And a person could be bought out of the slave market and you can see a slave, picturing a slave market very strong black man standing there, that had been sold into slavery and now was up for auction. And you hear the bid going higher and higher and higher and higher. And finally, it’s going once, going twice, three times, sold. And a man has been sold out of the slave market into a new owner. The new owner looks at him and he reaches down and he unfastens his leg chains and he stands up and frees his hands from those chains, and then he says go free. And the man looks at him and said man you just redeemed me. You just bought me. He said I know I bought you to set you free. It is for Freedom that you have been set free. I bought you to set you free. This man said, sir, you paid the highest price than anyone has ever paid for a slave. I know, I bought you to set you free. I bought you to set you free. Understand what I’m saying, I bought you to set you free. Well, where can I go? Anywhere you want to. I bought you to set you free.
And after a while he said, sir, why did you do that? He said, because I love you. You don’t even know me. He said well, yes I do because you’re a part of creation that I also am part of and no man should have ever been sold into slavery. And so I bought you out of slavery in order to set you free because I love you. And a man says sir. Where are you going now? He says I’m going back home. He said, can I come with you? I said, of course, I would love for you. Not to be my slave, but to be my friend. And the guy says sir, anyone who loves me this much I want to be your friend and I want to come live with you. And the man says, come on, I’ve already prepared a place for you. As a matter of fact, I had a feeling but you may want to do that and I’ve already prepared a room for you. It’s already prepared. All you got to do is move in.
We’re told that we have been seated in the heavenlies with Christ Jesus. You know what that means? He’s already got room prepared for us up there. It’s already, nothing left to do except move in. In order to do that. He had to buy us out of the slave market. That was redemption and in that redemption, to be able to provide total forgiveness of sins, total forgiveness, taking them away. Now, all of that is contained in coming to the owner. It’s all contained the very moment that I allowed Christ to transfer me out of the dominion of darkness and bring me into the kingdom of the Son in whom He loves. There’s a by-product of being in His kingdom. I have been redeemed and I have constantly forgiveness of sins. It has nothing to do with my asking. It has everything to do with His provision.
In light of what we have just been studying, it’s quite clear that our forgiveness was complete on the day that we put our faith in Christ. What it says in Him, we have been made complete, that means there’s nothing left to do. It’s all been done. There’s nothing I could do to add to what Christ did. And there’s nothing I can do to subtract from what Christ did. It’s been made complete. He cannot love me more. And He will not love me less. And so, I am complete in His love and I am complete in His forgiveness. So the very moment that we placed our faith in Christ Jesus, our forgiveness was complete that day. Nothing to add to it, nothing to subtract from it, but it was complete.
Now, the issue is are you willing to rest in that fact? That you are totally forgiven and that there is nothing you can do to add to it. That’s what’s called a Sabbath rest. It’s what the book of Hebrews is pointing us toward. And in Hebrews 10:17 and 18 is the conclusion to the new covenant that we are now a part of it. It’s about that New Covenant that this is the Covenant that I will make with them, and that is their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more. It’s a covenant that explained that just like any will and testament, and that’s what we call this a new testament. In other words, it’s a new will. We had an old will and we had an Old Testament. Now, we have a new will, a New Testament and it explains that in the book of Hebrews. That if any man has a will, that will does not go into effect until the one who made it dies. Until you die your will will not go into effect. When you do die, it goes into effect and the recipients cannot alter it. You can accept it or you can reject it, but you cannot change it.
And so, this is the New Covenant that God made with us, that went into effect on the day that Jesus died. Jesus, when He was here at his physical life taught under the Old Covenant. It said Jesus, born of a virgin under the law. So He entered into this world under the righteous requirements of the law, and was the only man who ever walked on the face of this Earth who walked in sinless perfection, under the law. Under the law that Jesus was under, the wages of sin was death, the same as it is today. And so at any time would have Jesus said He would have been under that law, have sinned and he too would have died. Had Jesus not been born of a virgin He would have been born out of the loins of Adam, dead, and He too would have been born dead. That’s why His virgin birth is not up for grabs. And so, Jesus Christ walked on the face of this Earth and fulfilled the law. What is the fulfillment of the law? Sinless perfection from the time you were born until the time he died is sinless perfection. He who knew no sin, that’s Jesus, became sin for us. So that in Him, His resurrection, we could become the righteousness of God. We had no righteousness in and of ourselves. There’s none righteous. No, not one.
And as Paul said, if righteousness could be gained through obedience to the law, then Christ died for nothing. So I had to be made righteous if I was ever going to enter into the presence of a righteous God. So Jesus had to make me that way. And so He, God came to this earth, fulfilled the law through his life. Upheld the law, wages of sin being death, through His death, upheld it through His death. He paid the price for me that I owed that I couldn’t pay. He paid something He didn’t owe, and He took that upon Himself so that having done so, a new covenant could be brought into effect because until a man dies, a covenant will not go into effect. So He died so that something new could be added to you and me. It’s called a New Covenant, and He was raised from the dead to verify and to give life to all who were waiting. Waiting for His return, waiting for Christ Jesus to come and to give them life. And from that day forth for 2000 years, as is said, the Holy Spirit of God has been going through the world, appealing to every man and woman, boy and girl, on the face of the Earth, come unto Jesus, come to life, come to life, come to life. And again, we have perverted that message and we’ve perverted it with the best things and that’s what Satan always does. He always uses good to pervert it into something else.
So what we have done is we have taught the cross without the resurrection even though Paul said, without the resurrection we are to be pitied of all people, because without the resurrection the cross would have had no meaning. I would just merely have been a forgiving dead man. And that’s the best that you would be able to have ever said about me. I was a forgiven corpse because of what He did at the cross. But He died on the cross in order to pay that debt of the wages of sin being death, so that He could give me a life called eternal life. Life, a life that at the very moment that I step into that life. That I have what? Redemption. What else do I have? Forgiveness of sins? Now with this act on the cross He said their sins in this new covenant, a new agreement between God and man, He said their sins and lawless acts I will remember, how often? No more and where these have been, that’s past tense folks, have been forgiven, there is no longer any sacrifice for sins. Now, why was he saying that? Because he was saying that to a people whereby, their forgiveness was based upon a sacrifice and the Israelites would flock back to Jerusalem every year for the day of atonement to do what? Shed the blood of an innocent animal on behalf of their own sins transferring their sins onto a sinless animal. And therefore having their sins covered. That’s what atonement did. Jesus didn’t come to atone for sins, folks. Atonement is not in the New Testament. Atonement Was An Old Testament way and means of getting forgiveness covered.
Jesus came to take away your sins. That’s called propitiation. In other words, His blood was presented to the Father, and the Father says propitiation is taken place. He is the propitiation for our sins. In other words, it’s finished. The blood of My Son is the only thing in the world able to cover the vileness of the sins of the entire world. And so there’s no more sacrifice for sins. Well, as I said to the Israelite, they had sacrifices for sins. So what was he saying? There is no more sacrifice. So, an Israelite says, what about this tradition of going back and killing these bulls and goats? Quit doing it, there’s no more sacrifice for sins. And if you’re not going to believe totally that Jesus died to take away your sins, for the forgiveness of sins, there is no more sacrifice for sins. All you have to look forward to is a fearful expectation of going to hell because you’re trusting in the blood of a bull and goat and the blood of an old goat, can never take away sins. And that’s the only way I can give you life called eternal life, if sins were taken away covering won’t do, I can cover him today and you got sin again on you tomorrow. You can have all your sins forgiven, this moment and the very next moment sin again, and that’s where the short accounts with God comes along. Well, I’ll get forgiven again and it’s again, now again, forgive it, again and again and again and again and you may as well be living back in the days of the old Covenant because he said, without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sins. And if there was any further forgiveness of sins to be executed on your behalf by God, He would have to come and die again and He is not going to do that.
And therefore we have but one option that is to walk by faith in the fact that when He said it’s finished, that’s exactly and precisely what He meant. It is Finished, it is done. And we, as children of God, who have come to Him, not for forgiveness, but for life, for Himself, and when He came to live within us the by-product, I have redemption. I have forgiveness of sins.
Thank you so much for tuning in to Classic Christianity, with Bob George. We hope you’ve enjoyed today’s program. We truly hope that today’s message has inspired you to walk a life of faith in the Lord, find more information online at shop.BobGeorge.net. There you’ll also find available CDs, DVDs, and bible studies available for purchase. It’s through your help that we are able to spread the good word of Jesus Christ. Until next time, walk in faith, be good to one another and praise the Lord. Amen.
Stand on the firmness of truth. Don’t keep going back and forth. Thank Him that the forgiveness issue is settled.
Let’s pray together:
- Lord Jesus,
- I thank you for taking away my sins on the cross,
- never ever to see them again.
- Having done that, I now thank you for giving me eternal life,
- through your resurrection.
- I now receive that life.
- And I am going stand in the fact that I am a child of the living God.
- In Jesus Holy name I pray.
All believers are now brothers and sisters in Christ.
3 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.”