WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
FEBRUARY 10, 2022
TOPIC: CRUCIFIED WITH CHRIST
BY T. O. BANSO
“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:20 New King James Version).
Although Peter was the leader of the apostles, Paul accused him of playing the hypocrite in Antioch because he withdrew from eating with the Gentile Christians and separated from them after the arrival of certain Jewish people from James.
Paul said, “Now when Peter had come to Antioch, I withstood him to his face, because he was to be blamed; for before certain men came from James, he would eat with the Gentiles; but when they came, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing those who were of the circumcision. And the rest of the Jews also played the hypocrite with him, so that even Barnabas was carried away with their hypocrisy” (Galatians 2:11-13 New King James Version).
Paul was displeased with Peter and the other Jews for not being straightforward about the truth of the gospel. He argued that one was not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ. He said the Gentiles must not be compelled to live as Jews.
Paul told Peter, “If you, being a Jew, live in the manner of Gentiles and not as the Jews, why do you compel Gentiles to live as Jews? We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles, knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified” (Galatians 2:14-16 New King James Version).
Paul argued that if he built again those things which he destroyed, he made himself a transgressor. In other words, if he preached justification by the works of the law instead of justification by faith in Christ, he was a sinner. He emphasized that he, through the law, died to the law that he might live to God (verses 18-19). If people could be saved by keeping the law, it means there was no need for Christ to die and it makes grace of no effect (Galatians 2:21).
Believers are justified by faith in Jesus Christ, not by the works of the law. The Gentiles must not be made to live like Jews. 1 Corinthians 12:13 says for by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body — whether Jews or Greeks, slaves or free — and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.
Romans 3:21-24 says, “But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (New King James Version).
Speaking further on the Antioch incident, Paul declared, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:20 New King James Version).
Paul was talking about his union with Christ, his identification with the death of Christ on the cross, and his victory over sin. Paul said he had been crucified with Christ – his salvation did not come through the law but Christ’s crucifixion. Not stopping at that, he talked about his new life in Jesus Christ. He was a new creature. He said he was not the one living but Christ in him. He was not living a natural life, not living by his strength, but by faith in the Son of God who loved him and gave Himself for him. In essence, when Christ was crucified, Paul was crucified; when Christ was buried, Paul was buried; and when Christ resurrected, Paul also resurrected.
Romans 6:4-7 puts it this way: “Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. For he who has died has been freed from sin” (New King James Version).
What Paul said about himself being crucified with Christ is also true of every child of God. Paul didn’t say he crucified himself. He said he had been crucified. God did. Every child of God must know that he has been crucified with Christ and allow Christ to live in him. He must not live the Christian life by his strength but by faith in Jesus Christ. You must know this. You can do all things through Christ who strengthens us (Philippians 4:13). You cannot live the Christian life in your power but in His power.
You must not promote self-righteousness instead of the righteousness of God or the works of the law instead of justification by faith. Titus 3:5 says it is not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy, He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit. We are saved by grace. “And if by grace, then it is no longer of works; otherwise grace is no longer grace. But if it is of works, it is no longer grace; otherwise work is no longer work” (Romans 11:6).
Every child of God has been crucified with Christ. He is no longer the one who lives but Christ lives in him. Do you know this? Do you know that your old man was crucified with Jesus Christ, that the body of sin might be done away with, that you should no longer be a slave of sin? (Romans 6:6). Do you know that Jesus Christ bore your sins in His own body on the tree, that you, having died to sins, might live for righteousness — by whose stripes you were healed? (1 Peter 2:24).
You have been crucified with Christ. Galatians 5:24 says those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Your old man has been crucified; it shouldn’t be alive in your life. You should not live the old life again but a new life. You should not be the one living but Christ living in you. Christ in you, the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27b).
Your old man was crucified with Christ. Put to death your members, which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry (Colossians 3:5). Get rid of them. They have been crucified.
Colossians 3:8-11 say, “But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all” (New King James Version).
You have been crucified with Christ. Let Christ live in you. Live a new life in Christ. Avoid the works of the flesh. “Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God” (Galatians 5:19-21 New King James Version).
Again, Paul says, “But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God” (Ephesians 5:3-5 New King James Version).
The old man has been crucified. Reckon yourself to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6:11). Be renewed in the spirit of your mind and put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness (Ephesians 4:23-24). Live a new life by faith in the Son of God. Live your life in union with Christ. He is the vine, you are the branch. If you abide in Him, and He in you, you will bear much fruit, for, without Him, you can do nothing (John 15:5).
Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh – you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves (Galatians 5:16). Live by the Holy Spirit and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit in every aspect of your life (verse 25).
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner, and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner, and I cannot save myself. I believe Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and resurrected the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: I have been crucified with Christ and I shall no longer live my new life in Christ Jesus by my strength but by faith in Christ. I reckon myself dead to sin and sin shall not reign in my body. I put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. I have nothing to do with the works of the flesh. I will walk in the Spirit and not fulfil the lust of the flesh. I will not do what my sinful nature craves in Jesus’ name.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
WhatsApp No: +2349081295947