Alive in Him

Read Colossians2:11-23

1. Christ's death is our life : And you, being dead in your trespasses (or sins) and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, v. 13.

Sometimes when reading the scripture, it can appear wholly academic. We read through and think, I’ve read that before. Until you put it into real life experience. At the age of 21 I was married with a 2yr old and expecting another baby. I was lost, lonely and confused. What I thought (marriage and a family) was going to bring me joy and contentment brought something entirely different. I had a longing in my soul that I thought couldn’t be filled.

Until that day… I remember exactly where I was standing. I can see the room and the furniture in it. I had heard the gospel, and I hoped it would be what would save me from the pain and anguish I was suffering. I cried out to the Lord for forgiveness, to come and take my life! Who can ever tell us that God is not real? I felt a peace flood over me like nothing I had ever felt before! I stepped out of the kingdom of darkness and into the kingdom of light in one moment! Praise the Lord!

We can all tell a story like this. The place where Jesus met us.

A state of sin is a state of spiritual death. Those who are in the world are dead in their sins. As the death of the body means its separation from the soul, so the death of the soul causes in its separation from God. As the death of the body is the corruption and decay of it, so sin is the corruption or depravation of the soul.

As a man who is dead has no power to help himself, so a habitual sinner is morally bankrupt; Though he is alive physically he has no ability to help himself, until he has the divine life or a renewed nature. Those in the world separated from God are lost in their sin. They don’t even know that they are, being aliens to the covenant of promise, and without God in the world, Eph. 2:12-13 at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

Because of their uncircumcision in their souls they were dead in their sins -dead by the law. As a condemned murderer is called a ‘dead man walking’, because he is under a sentence of death; so sinners by the guilt of sin are under the sentence of the law and condemned already. John 3:18 ““He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

We are not only made alive, but made alive together with Him. "It is true that He gave us life from the dead? He gave us pardon of sin; He gave us imputed righteousness. These are all precious things, but you see we are not content with them; we have received Christ himself. The Son of God has been poured out into us, and we have received him, and appropriated him." (Spurgeon)

Our death is reversed once we receive His sacrifice. Just like that! Christ's death was the death of our sins; Christ's resurrection is the quickening of our souls. He has made us alive together with Him: We can't make ourselves alive, but God can make us alive together with Jesus. We can never be made alive apart from Jesus.

“For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace” Eph 2:14-15

Through him we have the remission of sin: “ Having forgiven you all trespasses” vs. 13b. This is our quickening. The pardon of the crime is the new life to the criminal. You have seen the shows on TV when the accused gets pardoned and is set free? Which happens more and more as DNA evidence is used. New Life! But this pardoning is owing to the resurrection of Christ, as well as His death; for, as He died for our sins, so He rose again for our justification, “who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification.” Rom. 4:25.

2. Colossians 2:14 “having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.”

Having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, the handwriting of requirements makes us think of a list of our crimes or sins before God, a debt that no imperfect person can completely pay. But it can be taken out of the way, by payment from a perfect man, Jesus Christ.

This obligation that the Jews had to fulfill the ceremonial law, the hand-writing of ordinances or laws, was a yoke to the Jews and a partition-wall to the Gentiles. They were all removed.

We are free of that obligation to punishment required by the guilt of sin. Because without Christ’s sacrifice, cursed is everyone who does not keep the whole law. James 2:10 “For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.” This was a hand-writing which was against us, and contrary to us; for it threatened our eternal ruin. This was removed when he redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us, Galatians 3:13 “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”)”

He cancelled the debt for all who repent and believe. When he was nailed to the cross, the curse was as it were nailed to the cross. And our indwelling corruption is crucified with Christ by the virtue of his cross. When we remember the dying of the Lord Jesus, and see him nailed to the cross, we should see the hand-writing against us taken out of the way. Picture all of your sins written out on a piece of paper nailed along with Jesus to the cross!

The Lord Jesus took it out of the way, nailed it to his cross; that is, took away the obligation of it, that all might see and be satisfied that it was no more binding. When the substance came, the shadows fled away

Hebrews 8:13 “In that He says, “A new covenant,” He has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.”

3. Vs. 15 “Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it.”

As the curse of the law was against us, so the power of Satan was against us. But Jesus stood before God the Father, the Judge, and redeemed us out of the hands of His justice by a price, but He also dealt with the devil and his accusations against us! He set the captives free. The devil and all the powers of hell were conquered and disarmed by the dying Redeemer. The first promise in scripture pointed at this; the bruising of the heel of Christ in his sufferings was the breaking of the serpent's head, Genesis 3:15. The Redeemer conquered by dying. His crown of thorns turned into a crown of victory.

We can only imagine how Satan and every dark gleeful demon attacked Jesus as He hung on the cross on our behalf, as if He were a guilty sinner. "As he was suspended there, bound hand and foot to the wood in apparent weakness, they imagined they had him at their mercy, and flung themselves on him with hostile intent. But, far from suffering their attack without resistance, he grappled with them and mastered them, stripping them of the armor in which they trusted, and held them aloft in his outstretched hands, displaying to the universe their helplessness and his own unvanquished strength." (FF Bruce)

Paul wrote that if the rulers of this age - by which he meant both the spiritual powers of darkness and their earthly representatives - had known what would happen on the cross, they would have never crucified Jesus.

1 Corinthians 2:7-8. “But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.” They were defeating themselves, and they didn't even know it.

Pastor Dave Guzik says “Perhaps Satan, for a moment, thought that he had won at the cross. But Hell's imagined victory was turned into a defeat that disarmed every spiritual enemy who fights against those living under the light and power of the cross. The public spectacle of defeated demonic spirits makes their defeat all the more humiliating.”

And those of us who have crossed over from death to life can shout Hallelujah! Let’s do it! HALLELUJAH! No more bound by the death of life without Christ, the weight and debt of sin nailed to the cross, the power of the enemy no longer works on us. We are one with our dear Savior and we belong to Him!

Your Love Broke Through

Keith Green

Like a foolish dreamer, trying to build a highway to the sky

All my hopes would come tumbling down, and I never knew just why

Until today, when you pulled away the clouds that hung like curtains on my eyes

Well I've been blind all these wasted years and I thought I was so wise

But then you took me by surprise

Like waking up from the longest dream, how real it seemed

Until your love broke through

I've been lost in a fantasy that blinded me

Until your love broke through

All my life I've been searching for that crazy missing part

And with one touch you just rolled away the stone that held my heart

And now I see that the answer was as easy as just asking you in

And I am so sure I could never doubt your gentle touch again

It's like the power of the wind

Like waking up from the longest dream, how real it seemed

Until your love broke through

I've been lost in a fantasy that blinded me

Until your love, until your love, broke through