OUR TRANSFER

By Neil Anderson

 banner_secondary_who i am in christ

February 1
 
Colossians 1:13 
He delivered us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son
 
Perhaps you have heard the illustration of the two dogs. Some people say that we have two natures within us vying for control of our lives. They claim that our old sin nature, which we inherited from disobedient Adam, is like a big black dog. Our new nature, which we inherited through Christ’s redemptive work, is like a big white dog. These two dogs are bitter enemies, intent on destroying each other. Whenever you involve yourself in worldly thoughts or behavior, you are feeding the black dog. Whenever you focus your mind and activities on spiritual things, you are feeding the white dog. The dog you feed the most will eventually grow stronger and overpower the other.
 
This dramatic illustration may motivate Christians toward saintly behavior, but is it accurate based on who we really are in Christ? Since God “delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son” (Colossians 1:13), can we still be in both kingdoms? When God declares that we are “not in the flesh but in the Spirit” (Romans 8:9), can we be in the flesh and in the Spirit simultaneously? When God says that “you were formerly darkness, but now you are light in the Lord” (Ephesians 5:8), can you possibly be both light and darkness? When God states that “if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come” (2 Corinthians 5:17), can we be partly new creature and partly old creature?
 
But be careful. Can a Christian sin? Of course! “If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us” (1 John 1:8). But having sin and being sin are two completely different issues. When we choose to walk by the flesh we will sin, but, as 1 John 2:1 reminds us, we don’t have to: “My little children, I am writing these things to you that you may not sin.”
 
We will spend the next few days exploring the scriptural bases for this truth.
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2 replies

  1. God reckons us as light even though in one sense we are not yet out of the darkness. That’s one way to understand the tension between the old and new. In Christ we are light, new, spirit. We have “put on Christ” as a new garment, but the old man is still there under the clothes. None of these explanations gets at the whole truth. I am new, new born. I also live in the flesh.

    • You may choose to live in the flesh, but you do not have too do so. When you accept Christ as Lord you are released from the “old man”…the old man is dead and you are created anew in Christ. Yes you can and will still sin, but you are no longer the “old man” who IS sin.

      This is also what baptism is about spoken of by Paul. We are baptized into death with Christ meaning our sin-nature is crucified with Christ and dies. You come up out of the water a new creation in Christ…the new man.

      We are all born sinful, we basically ARE sin. Our spirit is dead because of sin. Then we meet with Jesus…and we are reborn, the “old man”…sin is done away with and we are reborn as a “new man” alive in the spirit.

      We no longer live in the flesh, we live in the spirit. Therefore although when we accept Christ as Lord we may choose to walk in the flesh, we are no longer OF the flesh.

      This is also why the Word of God makes sense to those reborn…but not to those living in the flesh.

Luke 21:36 "Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man."

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