There has certainly been a lot of difficult things that have happened this year on a global scale like deaths, the coronavirus, and now the protests. The world seems in chaos right now. But if you are like me there has been a lot of difficult things that have happened this year on a personal level as well. And it has been hard for me to see how Jesus is working in all of these things. Sometimes it is hard to believe Jesus in some of these spaces. I think about loving my wife like Christ loved the church. And there’s moments where I fail, and I hear the word failure. Maybe you hear the same thing when you think about how you are parenting. Maybe you have left hearing Pastor Josh’s messages each Sunday saying “amen” and yet during the week you hear the word hypocrite. There are times in our lives where we don’t trust in what God has said. Where we live in unbelief or are unfaithful to what God’s word says.
Where are the spaces where we don’t trust in His word?
What places in our lives do we not believe Jesus?
The question for us is, “do we believe that Jesus is the answer?” Can Jesus make me a better husband? Can He make us a better parent? Can He make us look more like Him? Does He really change our life? I hope we would all answer yes to those questions, but we do find ourselves in spaces where our answer is, “I don’t know.” Luckily, Paul has something to say about it. In Galatians 2:20 he writes,
I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me (CSB).
Many of us probably have memorized the first half of this verse, “I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.” It’s a very popular verse to have memorized and many may even call it one of your life verses. It tells us that Christ lives within us as believers. We know this to be true, as every believer is indwelled by the Holy Spirit. But if you’re like me, the second half of the verse isn’t as easy to recall. As I was reading this morning I stopped to reflect on this part of the verse, to meditate on it.
“The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me”
What comes to mind when you read this? Take a minute to meditate on it and what it means. Hopefully, you came up with a short list. Paul here is describing the impact the gospel has had on his life.
So what does this short sentence mean? We know from the previous sentence Jesus lives in us. And as Christians, this implies that there is a life we will enjoy in the future. The life of being with Jesus forever. The eternal life promised to all those who believe in the Son, where sin, death, pain, and sorrow will be gone. But there is still the reality of the current life, the earthly life we find ourselves in now. A life in a world with sorrow, pain, evil, destruction, sin, and death.
That seems terrible to me, like what do I do now? Paul tells us that in this life he will live by faith. This should sound familiar as he uses a similar phrase in Romans 1:17 and is an illusion to Habakkuk 2:4. Paul tells us that as we live in this world we are to live by faith in Jesus. Why can we live by faith in Jesus? Because He loved us and died for us on the cross in atonement for our sin. We have confidence we can trust Him because He has proved Himself. Jesus is worthy of our commitment, allegiance, and trust.
Now faith is one of my favorite words in Greek, πίστις (pistis), and we translate it as faith almost every time. But how we think about this word today it would be better translated as faithfulness. Therefore, when we say we live by faith in Jesus it means we live faithful to Him because He has already demonstrated that we can trust Him.
What spaces do you need to live faithfully to Jesus? Where do you need to let Jesus speak into your life instead of yourself? Do we believe Jesus when He says He has come to make all things new?
For His Glory,