“My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” – Galatians 2:20.
What drives you? What drives you to get up in the morning and tackle the challenges of the day? When you are striving for a goal what drives you? When you fail what drives you to pick yourself up and try again? It is probably the people around you, family, friends coworkers that are motivating you to achieve your goal. Or maybe the person who is pushing you relentlessly is you. Without that motivation, it is very difficult to reach your goal.
What if your goal is to lead a God-pleasing life? The temptation is to look at this question like any other goal-oriented question in our life. We simply need the right motivation and often we try to motivate ourselves. So, how can we lead a God-pleasing life? What is our motivation? What drives us? It’s grace. It is by grace and by grace alone that we can live our lives in service to God. Grace is our motivation. Grace pushes and carries us to lead God-pleasing lives where Jesus lives in us.
Christ living in us does not mean that He possesses our bodies and lives our life for us. It does not mean He controls our minds and makes all our choices for us. The Bible makes it clear that “we are the temple of the living.” God dwells in us today through the power of His Holy Spirit. In Romans 8 Paul explains that “you have the Spirit of God living in you.” (verse 9). Verse 10 adds, “and Christ lives within you…” Jesus Christ can live in a person through the power of the Holy Spirit. When the Holy Spirit is in us, He empowers us to actually become like God the Father and Jesus Christ in nature, character, spirit, attitudes, approach, and love.
Jesus living in us means we live as Jesus did. What all the scriptures on this subject reveal is that Jesus Christ’s life will be in us only as we seek to make His way of life our way of life—to walk as He walked, to live as He lived. “Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Jesus did.” (1 John 2:6). Ephesians 4:22-24 says, “throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.” God wants us to choose for ourselves to live as Jesus lived. This involves a humble, earnest seeking to become like Jesus Christ so His life becomes our life.
In order to have Christ in us by living as He lived, we must deeply desire to change and become more like Him. That’s our motivation. We live for the One who lives in us. We live for the One who has set us free. We live for the One who has given us new life. Because of Christ’s death on the cross, our sinful nature is lost and our new-Christian nature has been created… giving us exactly what we need to follow our Lord.
- What does living for Jesus and Jesus living in you mean in practical terms?