Who we are and what we do as born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ sometimes fail to align as we seek to walk with our Heavenly Father during this present lifetime. Thus, the Apostle Paul commanded,
"Ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light" (Ephesians 5:8).
Spiritual growth involves the increasing correlation between our "are" and our "walk". Moreover, being precedes doing. "We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works" (Ephesians 2:10). The challenge we face involves knowing, understanding, and acting upon who we are in Christ, as opposed to who we were before we believed. We often feel the same, if not worse, and we can still act as if we are spiritual ugly ducklings rather than swans. The Corinthians serve as a clear example of this dichotomy between who we are as Christians, and what we do.
"Ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God" (I Corinthians 6:11).
"Ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?" (I Corinthians 3:3).
Spiritual in their being, identity, and spiritual substance - "of Him are ye in Christ Jesus" - but carnal in their thoughts, attitudes, and actions, the Corinthians believers failed to realize and act upon the truth, namely, the miracle of transformation wrought in them by salvation in Christ (I Corinthians 1:30).
"If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature. Old things are passed away, behold, all things are become new" (II Corinthians 5:17).
Note the "behold" in the Apostle Paul's affirmation. Do we see by faith the newness in us, as declared by God's Word? Or do we base our self perception on appearance, feeling, and performance? If we have trusted in the Lord Jesus, we are not who and what we were in the innermost depths of our being. The entrance of the Holy Spirit into our own spirits birthed a "new man, created in righteousness and true holiness" (Ephesians 4:24). We presently retain our flesh, inherited from Adam, wherein a "law of sin" still resides (Romans 7:23; 25). Thus, we can still walk as a spiritual ugly duckling. This does not change the truth that in Christ, we are a swan able to live in the beauty of holiness as enabled by the our Lord's presence, leading, and enabling. We must behold this truth declared so frequently on the pages of the New Testament, and proclaimed deeply within our hearts - "The Spirit beareth witness with our spirit that we are the children of God" (Romans 8:16).
One day our "are" and our "walk" will perfectly unite. We will always act in accordance with who and what we are in Christ. "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be. But we know that when He shall appear, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is" (I John 3:2). In this day, we seek progress toward that holy end of glorification. In this day, we behold by remembering and affirming that regardless of appearance, emotion, and past experience, we are not who we were before salvation. The Lord Jesus suffered too much for us to miss the miracle of His grace already wrought in us. Indeed, let us remember that on the cross of Calvary, He became what He was not so that we might become what we now are in Him…
"He hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him."
(II Corinthians 5:21).
Weekly Memory Verse
Reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.