Series: Other Speakers
Sun am 19 February 2012 – Johan Cronje
Eph. 1:4-5, 13, 17-18; Heb. 4:3; Col. 1:16 (Msg); Col. 1: 25-28; 2 Cor. 11:3; (Rev. 13:8 – NIV); (Eph. 1:9)
You can miss the essence of the life in Christ and Christ in us especially if you come out of a background where everything was seen to be sinful. There are two main reasons why we miss God’s plan:
- We see the Bible as the book of good and evil, and we become sin conscious. We think Christianity is about fighting sin and by that becoming a better person.
- We think we can become good Christians when we fight the devil.
We miss the plan God has for us because we fight sin and we fight the devil, and we never come to the knowledge of the divine plan that God Himself developed for us. Even though it is a mystery it is open to those who are hungry after God. This is how I understood the Bible, interpreting it through the lenses of man having messed up everything by sinning and man must now repair the mess and damage by improving himself. Religion in its strongest, clearest form says that in doing something I am improving myself. We are trying from below, by self-improvement, to earn a place in heaven.
“In” Christ means you come to a final place of rest. Even though I was fighting and struggling to become a good Christian, nothing changed. Something was wrong. I always held on to the verse in the Bible that said, “Greater is He that is in me than he that is in the world” but I did not focus on the One in me; I always focused on the one that was in the world. I was missing something. My discovery was “In Him we live and in Him we move and we have our being.” That is the key to let Him take over our lives. If you discover the plan of God for your life, it will change your life.
Where do we start? Before the foundation of the world, before Genesis, where God does not want us to be sin conscious, but “Christ in me” conscious! If I have certain glasses on, I don’t look different but I see differently. If you are sin-conscious, everything you see through those glasses is sin. We must get into the frame of mind that is “Christ in me” conscious.
…just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will (Eph. 1:4-5).
If God chose you, it means it is an act of speaking forth. Speaking is the method by which we are chosen. When God spoke to the waters, it gave birth to fish. Stars cannot be out of the firmament. Fish cannot be out of water. When God chose me, He spoke to Himself, and I came forth in Him. That is why I am in Him before the foundation of the world. I was there when He had a meeting about the human race; there where your name was called, I was there. “Brother” means, “out of the same womb.” You were there with me; we were in Christ before the foundation of the world. We have been called into a spiritual being in Him. As a fish cannot live out of water, we cannot live outside of God. God was busy with us before creation. The way that He planned us was not besides something, it was in Him. The word “in Him” or “in Christ” is mentioned 26 times in the book of Ephesians. Before creation everything was planned in Him. Everything in creation is about being in Him.
For we who have believed enter that rest, … although His works were finished from the foundation of the world (Heb. 4:3). It is finished, and we have to walk in obedience to God’s plan for it to work for me. It is not automatic.
For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank after rank of angels—everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him (Col. 1:16-Message Bible). The word “showbread” has been taken from the word “purpose”. We are God’s showbreads. It is a bread of His presence. God loves to show off with you because you are bread that has His presence. Could it be during the Holy Communion that He invokes Himself and out of that bread comes the Body of Christ that you and I are part of? The gospel of salvation was finished in Him (Eph. 1:13). The Lamb was slain before the foundation of the world (Rev. 13:8 – NIV). In the plan of salvation, Jesus stepped forward and said, “I will give my life for that.” Before the foundation of the world, Jesus died. If we want to understand the Father’s plan in Christ, we need a revelation from the Holy Spirit (Eph. 1:17-18).
The devil will try to corrupt the simplicity that is in Christ (2 Cor. 11:3). To understand the Father’s plan, we must go back before Genesis; don’t begin in Genesis, go back to before the foundation of the world and find out God’s plan for your life. You will see that the Gospel of your salvation is about your being in Christ. The plans He has for you are good plans, plans to prosper and not to harm you (Jer. 29:11). This gospel states that we were completed in Him before the foundation of the world. Even though His plan for us is perfect, we have to say “yes” to it. We have to come to obedience in the plan of salvation. Nothing influenced Him; He was not caught unaware when Adam sinned because His plan was finished. The Lamb was slain; He did not have to change His plan, He just brought it into alignment with the plan of heaven. “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me (Matt. 28:11). Come to the Father’s plan in Him. Come and sit, not at the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Come to the final place of rest in Christ.
The final word on this subject has been written. This is the final gospel. There will not be another message. No man can be complete without the revelation of the God’s plan that Christ is in us. Of this church I was made a minister according to the stewardship from God bestowed on me for your benefit, so that I might fully carry out the preaching of the word of God, that is, the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints, to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory (Col. 1:25-27). It was hidden throughout the ages – David did not know about it; Moses did not know about it; Abraham did not know about it. No prophet knew about it. It was hidden up to that point that it was revealed to Paul. It is God’s hope, not your hope. We proclaim Him, admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom, so that we may present every man complete in Christ (Col. 1:28). Why do we put so much emphasis on Christ in us? It will lead us to that corporate man which will come to the full stature of Christ.
Become “Christ in me” conscious knowing that we will eventually grow to the full stature of Christ, the perfect Man, the Manchild, the mature Man upon the earth. Come to the point where you find rest in Christ.