Are You Crucified With Christ?
Sacrifice And Blood Atonement Of Jesus Christ, No Man Is An Island, Scriptural Basis For Crucified With Christ Doctrine, Fallacy Of Sinless Saints, Apostle Paul's Battles Against His Flesh, Old Man vs New Man, Ransom Price: Purchased With The Blood Of Jesus Christ, Glorify God In Your Body, Christians Must Surrender Our Lives And Wills To God On A Daily Basis, New Creatures In Christ Jesus, Renewed Rewired And Conformed To The Will Of God, Our Common Trials Keep Us Humble, Jesus Will Always Lift Us Up, Humble Unprofitable Servants, Remain Faithful Servants, Jesus' Complete Finished Work On The Cross, Cleansed By The Blood Of Christ, Jesus Died Once For All Men
A number of years ago I was involved in a discussion with a certain person who participated in our now-defunct mailing list ministry -- EDGE. During our conversation, the topic turned to the discussion of the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ and His Blood Atonement, which, as all Christians know, is the price that Jesus was willing to pay in order to obtain our Salvation. I discuss this topic more at length in such articles as "The Blood Atonement: In Jesus' Own Words" and "Message to the World", to name a few.
To my surprise, this person proceeded to inform me that we are in some way placed upon, or perhaps added to, the Cross with Christ. He stated that the Blood of Jesus is then added to our own blood, and that ultimately, we die and are then resurrected with Him.
While I offered this person a few Scriptural answers in the hope of clearing up what seemed to me to be some level of confusion on his part concerning what it actually means to be crucified with Christ, I still felt a certain uneasiness in my heart regarding the things that he had been saying. As the Apostle Paul states in so many words in his discourse that is found in the fourteenth chapter of his Epistle to the Romans, -- which concerns the eating of meat -- no man is an island, as we see here:
"For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself."
Romans 14:7, KJV
In other words, we each affect each other by the words which we speak, and by the thoughts which we convey, and my concern was that this person might possibly be sharing his misguided ideas with other people who form a part of his social circle. Thus, I was motivated to write this current article, and to offer a clear Scriptural explanation regarding what it really means to be crucified with Christ. This doctrine finds its origin in such verses as the following, which are found in the writings of the Apostle Paul:
"Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin."
Romans 6:6, KJV
"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."
Galatians 2:20, KJV
"But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world."
Galatians 6:14, KJV
While certain modern churches and denominations -- such as the Roman Catholic Church -- like to paint the Prophets and Apostles of old as "sinless Saints" who achieved a level of spirituality which we Christians today should never hope to achieve, it becomes evident from reading the Epistles of the Apostle Paul, that he was more than aware of the fact that fighting the sins of the flesh and the old man is in reality a never-ending battle. Paul knew that he was by no means a perfect man in the flesh, and he was humble enough to admit that he never attained to some sinless state of perfection. He battled his old man of the flesh until the day that he died. Thus he wrote verses such as the following:
"Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus."
Philippians 3:13-14, KJV
"For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin."
Romans 7:14-25, KJV
It is this constant battle that exists between the old man of the flesh and the sin that dwells within us, and the new reborn man of the spirit which desires to please the Lord, that being crucified with Christ is all about. As I stated at the beginning of this article, the Scriptures inform us that Jesus Christ purchased our Salvation when He lovingly shed His own Blood on a Roman Cross. In other words, Jesus gave His life as a ransom price for us. He literally freed us from the sure sentence of death, through His own Death. Please consider the following verses which confirm this fact:
"What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."
1 Corinthians 6:19-20, KJV
"Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men."
1 Corinthians 7:23, KJV
"Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many."
Matthew 20:28, KJV
"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time."
1 Timothy 2:5-6, KJV
In the previous verses, what does the Apostle Paul mean when he says "glorify God in your body, and in your spirit"? If we follow the practice of comparing Scripture with Scripture, we find an immediate answer to this question. To glorify God in our body simply means to sacrifice -- or to deny -- our own personal interests, desires and needs in life, and to wholly dedicate our lives to the Lord in loving, voluntary Christian service to others every single day of our lives. Our symbolic cross upon which we are crucified, is a daily experience in which we surrender our lives -- and our wills -- to God, in order that we might shine forth His Light, and bear lasting fruit for the Kingdom of God. This very concept of Christian sacrifice and service is revealed in the following verses:
"And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it."
Luke 9:23-24, KJV
"I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily."
1 Corinthians 15:31, KJV
"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."
Romans 12:1-2, KJV
"Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren."
1 John 3:16, KJV
You will notice that both Jesus and Paul specifically inform us that this denial of ourselves, and allowing ourselves to be placed on a symbolic cross in order to fulfill God's Will, is a daily experience. As Paul writes, "I die daily". It is "a living sacrifice". For those who call themselves Disciples of Jesus Christ, the Lord does not accept a "go to church on Sunday only" or a "I will do it when I feel like it" routine. That is not real Christianity. As I explain in other articles such as "Where Are The First Century Churches?", those people who are really serious about serving the Lord, are required to fulfill their Christian obligations on a daily basis.
While it is indeed true that the Scriptures inform us that the Apostle Paul preached in the synagogues on the Sabbath, the mistake that some Christians make -- perhaps simply out of ignorance of the Scriptures -- is to assume that it was the only time that Paul ever preached. However, this is most certainly not the case. As the following verses reveal, the early Christians kept busy for the Lord on a daily basis:
"And so were the churches established in the faith, and increased in number daily."
Acts 16:5, KJV
"These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so . . . Therefore disputed he in the synagogue with the Jews, and with the devout persons, and in the market daily with them that met with him."
Acts 17:11, 17, KJV
"But when divers were hardened, and believed not, but spake evil of that way before the multitude, he departed from them, and separated the disciples, disputing daily in the school of one Tyrannus."
Acts 19:9, KJV
Thus, by comparing Scripture with Scripture, we see what it really means when the Apostle Paul says such things as "our old man is crucified with him", "I am crucified with Christ" and "I die daily". The reason why the old man is crucified, is simply because through the experience of being born again spiritually, as per Jesus' very own words which are found at the beginning of the third chapter of the Gospel of John, we become new creatures in Christ Jesus. Not only do we acquire a new outlook on life, but as Paul writes in his Epistle to the Romans, our hearts and minds are renewed, transformed and rewired to conform to the Will of God.
In a word, our former lives of sin and rebellion are supposed to become a thing of the past, if we are truly born anew, and if we remain yielded to His Will. The old man of the flesh is crucified, and the old interests and desires abandoned, while the new man lives. We are a new creature with a new mind, who serves God from the heart. Consider the following verses:
"Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17, KJV
"For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ."
1 Corinthians 2:16, KJV
"Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;"
2 Corinthians 10:5, KJV
This does not mean that we will never sin again, that we will never be tempted again, or that we will never fall again. As we have now seen, remaining a lifelong Christian is indeed a constant battle, and there are pitfalls at every turn. Just like the Apostle Paul, there will be times when we do things which will not conform to the image of the new man. But, as I point out in such articles as "The Lord Will Lift You Up" and "The Battle is Not Yours Alone", the Lord is faithful, and He will always be there to pick us up even when we do fall. I am reminded of the following verses:
"There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it."
1 Corinthians 10:13, KJV
"Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy . . . Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world."
1 Peter 4:12-13, 5:9, KJV
"If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself."
2 Timothy 2:13, KJV
". . . for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee."
Hebrews 13:5b, KJV
Furthermore, it is also important to remember that it is our very trials, battles, sins and mistakes which help to keep us humble, and God has a purpose for them all. Despite all that we do for the Lord, we must never allow our pride to exalt us above our brethren, as if we are more righteous than they are, because we are doing more for the Lord, or perhaps because we have been serving the Lord longer than they have. As Jesus clearly teaches us, no matter how much we do for Him, and no matter how long we do it for, we are still unprofitable servants who have simply done that which is our duty to do. As such, we must remain humble, and we should not be lords over God's heritage; rather, we should be examples to the flock, as we see by these verses:
"So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do."
Luke 17:10, KJV
"For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise."
2 Corinthians 10:12, KJV
"For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard. And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way. Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle? They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive. So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the labourers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first. And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny. But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny. And when they had received it, they murmured against the goodman of the house, Saying, These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day. But he answered one of them, and said, Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with me for a penny? Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good? So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen."
Matthew 20:1-16, KJV
"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."
Matthew 11:28-30, KJV
"At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven."
Matthew 18:1-4, KJV
"And he put forth a parable to those which were bidden, when he marked how they chose out the chief rooms; saying unto them, When thou art bidden of any man to a wedding, sit not down in the highest room; lest a more honourable man than thou be bidden of him; And he that bade thee and him come and say to thee, Give this man place; and thou begin with shame to take the lowest room. But when thou art bidden, go and sit down in the lowest room; that when he that bade thee cometh, he may say unto thee, Friend, go up higher: then shalt thou have worship in the presence of them that sit at meat with thee. For whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted."
Luke 14:7-11, KJV
"Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ. But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant. And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted."
Matthew 23:10-12, KJV
"But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up."
James 4:6-10, KJV
"Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away. Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:"
1 Peter 5:3-6, KJV
"Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall."
Proverbs 16:18, KJV
"For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world."
1 John 2:16, KJV
With the previous information, I hope that you have gained a better understanding of what it means to be crucified with Christ. In short, being crucified with Christ is not a part of, and does not in any way contribute to, Jesus' Atonement which was necessarily made for our sins. Rather, it does in fact have everything to do with daily, sacrificial service to the Lord, after we have come to know Jesus Christ. It is denying ourselves, in order to faithfully serve Him. As the Apostle Paul writes:
"Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful."
1 Corinthians 4:2, KJV
There are a number of Parables that are found in the Gospels where Jesus also emphasizes the importance of being faithful stewards over that which we have been given. For example, consider the following verses:
"Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?"
Matthew 24:45, KJV
"His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord."
Matthew 25:21, KJV
"He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much. If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man's, who shall give you that which is your own?"
Luke 16:10-12, KJV
"And he said unto him, Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities."
Luke 19:17, KJV
Contrary to what the man who wrote to me claimed, we do not need to be crucified on a cross in any way. Neither must our blood be mingled with that of Jesus Christ. What Jesus did for us is a complete and finished work. As Jesus cried out on that fateful, dark afternoon two thousand years ago, "It is finished". Jesus died once, and only once, and bore the weight of the sins of the entire world all by Himself. His Blood alone cleanses us of all unrighteousness. His Blood alone sealed the New Covenant and the New Testament between God and man. Consider the following verses which verify these various points:
"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool."
Isaiah 1:18, KJV
"And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins."
Matthew 26:26-28, KJV
"And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body. And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it. And he said unto them, This is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many."
Mark 14:22-24, KJV
"And when the hour was come, he sat down, and the twelve apostles with him. And he said unto them, With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer: For I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, Take this, and divide it among yourselves: For I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come. And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me. Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you."
Luke 22:14-20, KJV
"But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ."
Ephesians 2:13, KJV
"Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;"
Hebrews 10:19-20, KJV
"Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate . . . Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen."
Hebrews 13:12, 20-21, KJV
"Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied."
1 Peter 1:2, KJV
"Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed."
1 Peter 2:24, KJV
"But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin . . . If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
1 John 1:7, 9, KJV
"And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,"
Revelation 1:5, KJV
"And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb."
Revelation 7:14, KJV
"Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin ONCE: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God."
Romans 6:9-10, KJV
"But this man, [Jesus] because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them. For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people's: for this he did ONCE, when he offered up himself."
Hebrews 7:24-27, KJV
"But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in ONCE into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us."
Hebrews 9:11-12, KJV
"For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us: Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others; For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now ONCE in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself . . . So Christ was ONCE offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation."
Hebrews 9:24-26, 28, KJV
"By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ ONCE for all."
Hebrews 10:10, KJV
"For Christ also hath ONCE suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:"
1 Peter 3:18, KJV