Just three little words; so astoundingly simple; so wonderfully perfect and revealing.
Just three little words that represent the colossal sum and substance of all of God’s eternal wisdom, causing even the angelic hosts to be transfixed by the heart and mind of their creator.
Just three little words that transformed a murderous Pharisee named Saul into a life-affirming apostle named Paul.
Just three little words that represent humanity’s only hope, and the destroyer’s gravest fear.
Just three little words that define the immeasurable gulf between some religious puppet animated by strings, and a life breathed unto eternity in the power and presence of the Eternal God.
Just three little words that enliven and fulfill the whole intent and beauty of God’s Holy law, bringing heaven within reach of those who are dust.
Just three little words that neutralize the flesh in man and the spirit of Adam and anti-christ that pervades the world.
Just three little words that explain how the Divine Shepherd will make this world His foot stool in and through His sheep.
To whom God would 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 1:27)
“Christ in you” - three of the most powerful and earth-shattering little words ever conceived and transacted in all the created universe. Three little words that most churches and supposed teachers negate by their practice, if not their teaching.
Three little words that mark that immeasurable and eternal chasm between heaven and hell, truth and the lie, Christ and anti-christ, holy and reprobate, heresy and light, doing and being, religion and the hope of glory.
But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. And if Christ [be] in you, the body [is] dead because of sin; but the Spirit [is] life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. (Rom 8:9-11)
And so… are you so confident that this describes you? You had better be. For many false and fruitless years I thought it did for me. I foolishly listened to and followed many who thought they had a better way; that there was somehow more to it; that it wasn’t that simple.
Oh how we have strayed dear saints. Oh how we have betrayed the beauty and wonder of the resurrected Christ. How we have so readily fallen for that first and vicious lie of the improved man, the transformed man, the actualized man. Where then is the power and the quickening to life? In steps, in programs, in ministry, in might or method or determination or discipline? In good and pure thoughts? In redemptive sacrifice?
Oh what fools we are, and blind! He told us didn’t He? He told us it was better that He returned to the Father; that He would write His laws in our hearts and minds; that we would once and for all find rest in Him? That He was the Bread from Heaven? That He was the staff raised by Moses? That unless we eat of His flesh and drink of His blood, we are as good as dead already?
Yet for 2000 years men have reared themselves up and convinced us that we need them; that we need mediators and priests and shepherds and rites and practices, etc, etc. And now apparently we need humanism, and psychology, and methods and programs and all that Babylon offers.
Rubbish I say!
Three little words dash all of this to pieces! Three little words are all you need to know to send every one of these lies back to the hell from whence they came!
Christ in you!
Here, let me say it again….
Christ in you!
Did you get that in the back row?
Christ in you!
Here alone is the wonder of the Christian life. Here alone is the power over every unclean and unwanted thing in our hearts and lives! Here is the power and the glory – the power to be, to resist, to walk, to stand, to live and love and learn all that the Father intends for us in His Beloved Son! Here is the beginning and the end, the hope of heaven and the hope of glory that no man nor devil shall ever snatch away from us! Here is the tree of life forsaken by Adam in that distant garden, yet offered to you and me!
So utterly and indescribably simple it seems. So hopeful and affirming to every creature in need of redemption and life!
And yet what have our churches and theologians and gurus done, my brethren? To what have they added to this divine simplicity? Have they not taught every single one of us in so many sordid and sophisticated ways that IT IS NOT ENOUGH!!!
That we need to eat also from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil; that it is in ourselves to be acceptable to the Holy and awesome Creator who will not suffer the ungodliness of His creation?
I must confess before all of you that I am positively grieved to the very core of my soul that so many of His little ones have fallen for this first and only lie; that so many continue to support churches and teachers who would add or subtract from the divine sufficiency of the Lord Jesus Christ inhabiting His people.
This is the mystery and hope of the gospel is it not? Is this not what Paul taught and what every true Christian since has embraced as the ultimate essential?
My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you…(Gal 4:19)
Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform [it] until the day of Jesus Christ. (Phil 1:6)
Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom [be] glory for ever and ever. Amen. (Heb 13:21)
Is He in you my brother? Is He in you my sister? Why then are you still so dependent and needy, groping for every new thing to come along that tickles your ears? Why then are there more priests and heretics today than ever before, with fat bellies and thousands following behind them like dumb beasts? Why so many supplements and additions and books and theories and theologies all supplanting that essential and exclusive reality that He in us is all we have and ever will need?
Time is short my brethren, and this is no small point of doctrine that we can hold loosely! In truth, this is the only doctrine, as absolutely everything promised by our Lord hinges upon Him being the way and the life; the holy and quintessential power abiding within us. Now, at the end of this age, is the time to examine ourselves to determine just who and what is inside us…
Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? (2Cr 13:5)
And don’t take this too lightly either. It matters not if you consider yourself a religious or spiritual person, a person of faith even; a church-goer, steeped in the traditional tenets of the faith. The only way He will really and truly know you is if He lives in you; If He has claimed you as His dwelling place.
Did you accept Him into your life once? Great, but is He inside you at this very moment – your way and life and truth? Or do you trust in another?
Did you pour your heart out to Him once, in bloody anguish of soul and repentance? Terrific, but what spirit compels you on a moment-by-moment basis now. Is He alone your breathing in and breathing out; your standing up and sitting down?
This is not a game to be played, or a suit of clothes to take on and off! This is life and death and the criteria is profoundly clear – Either He abides in you and is Lord of Your life or He isn’t. Either you have chosen life or you have chosen death! What will it be?
My friends, the devil himself and all his demons are not intimidated in the least by your religious exertion, or the self-life rising up in the name of Jesus Christ. There is in truth only one reality that fills them with fear and dread, and that is the one fact in the universe that is divinely positioned to restore all of the dominion currently under demonic control back to the Most High God. Consider therefore, who and what compels you. If you blindly believe you can sit on the fence while all of hell rises us to be judged, then you may just find yourself among them.
- Will you not rather withdraw once and for all that He might advance?
- Will you then stop pretending to be and start being in Him?
- Will you allow yourself to be emptied that He alone may fill you and encompass you?
- Will you be reduced that He alone might be increased in you?
- will you be sidelined that He – with all His power and ability – may enter the game?
- Will you stop asserting and presenting yourself that He alone might be manifest and revealed?
This is our prayer for you, and it is truly the only one that matters. Oh that the world and everyone in it would see the Lord Jesus Christ enlarged and revealed in His holy people. Oh that they would stop seeing only “christians” and start seeing Christ Himself in all His holiness and Glory! Oh that they would no longer be touched by some good-hearted church ministry to the filling of their belly or self-esteem, and be touched by the Lord Himself to the redeeming and claiming of their soul.
Here my beloved is the place where the Spirit touches bone; where we live in Him, and move in Him and have our very being in Him…solely because He is in us, and all that we are is being appropriated for Himself and His Heavenly Father.
Christ in you – just three little words. But my beloved this is all we will ever need. Go to Him now if you have never let Him in, or if lately you are shutting Him out. And stop your ears from all those trying to convince you that you need anything or anyone else. If coming to Him to receive Him means departing from something or someone else, then do it gladly and do it quickly, and don’t look back. You won’t ever be the same again, I promise you.
Oh Mighty and Munificent Father in Heaven – We pray for all of your little ones, that no longer will we try to please you in the power of our own life. We invite the Lord Jesus Christ into our lives to reign from within us, to lead us onward as the captain and navigator of our souls. Oh Righteous Father, that He alone would be magnified and You also for granting Him to us, and us to Him. Let all of the unbelievers and the world see him Lord and not some form of improved or dressed up man; not us. Help us to know and understand that He alone is all we really need; that in Him alone the victory is ours to claim, and that no created thing can prevail against Him and the one in whom He dwells. We thank You Father and love You, for in granting us Your Holy Son we have been made whole.
In Jesus’ Glorious Name, we pray. Amen.
W.E. Smith, British by birth, resides in the Midwest USA. Read more about Smith here. Visit his encouraging blog at LivingWalk.com for inspirational articles and to read about his soon to be published book The Real Thing: An Exhortation for the Authentic Christian Life