Are You in Christ?
“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?”
II Corinthians 13:5
1. It is an important part of our faith to examine ourselves for self-deception and backsliding.
2. As we approach communion, examination is one of the two things required (I Cor 11:28-29).
3. A new year deserves new examination, and the result should be new conduct in some degree.
4. Our question is not altered by order, whether Christ is in us or we in Him (John 6:56; 15:4).
5. Many think they are in Christ and will say so at Judgment, but they are deceived (Matt 7:21).
a. Men deceive themselves by faith, baptism, church membership, fleshly good works, etc.
b. They assume they are in Christ by trusting in conditions or evidence not from the Bible.
c. They profess they are in Christ; if they hear it enough and others approve, they assume.
d. They pretend they are in Christ by showing a form of godliness but without any power.
6. There is a gospel rest of assurance: fear of missing it should cause examination (Heb 4:1,11).
7. It is a matter we should examine and prove with utmost diligence and uncompromising zeal.
8. The day approaches when the divine answer key will yield results beyond comprehension.
9. The text before you is a good one, and one you should not easily or soon forget. Memorize it.
a. Here is a great spiritual duty and exercise of saints, which should never end in this life.
b. To examine and prove is to make close inspection with desire and suspicion to find fault.
c. If you paid for and ordered an inspection of your car, are you content with kicking tires?
d. The faith of Jesus Christ is not hearing, believing, or saying (Jas 1:22; 2:19; I John 2:4).
e. The faith of Jesus Christ is the doctrine which is according to godliness (I Tim 6:3-5).
f. It is the opposite of perilous compromise of Christianity in our generation (II Tim 3:1-5).
g. We must prove that we practice the correct doctrine (Acts 17:11; I Thes 5:21), but we must also examine our hearts for idols or stumblingblocks that are there (Ezekiel 14:1-5).
A. You know the Lord’s warning about a man lacking a wedding garment (Mat 22:1-14).
B. The fate and future of all rational beings depends on their relationship to Jesus Christ.
C. All spiritual blessings are in Christ Jesus, without whom you are totally lost (Eph 1:3).
D. Based on Jesus Christ’s death, there is no condemnation to them in Him (Rom 8:1).
E. God put us in Him for wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, redemption (I Cor 1:30).
F. You are either in Adam for death, or you are in Christ for life (I Cor 15:22). Prove it!
G. A man without Jesus Christ in Him by the Spirit of God is none of His (Rom 8:1-9).
1. If you are alive in the Spirit by regeneration, then walk in the Spirit (Gal 5:25).
2. A reprobate is a reject, not chosen. Election is choosing; reprobation is rejection.
3. If you meet God without being in Jesus Christ, your worst nightmare is a picnic!
4. If you do not love Jesus Christ, then Anathema Maranatha to you (I Cor 16:22)!
A. Being in Jesus Christ is not a chance or your choice, but rather God’s eternal counsel.
1. When God chose the drama of a wedding for His Son, He also chose His guests.
2. Those in Christ were chosen in Him before the foundation of the world (Ep 1:3-6).
3. God’s purpose and grace was given His elect before the world began (II Tim 1:9).
4. If you are saved any way, you were chosen to it from the beginning (II Thes 2:13).
B. Being in Jesus Christ means that His life, death, and life were for your saving benefit.
1. God put your sins on Christ, so He could give you His righteousness (II Cor 5:21).
2. Jesus took your sins to Calvary and healed you by His stripes … or not (I Pe 2:24).
3. Opposite the first Adam, Jesus Christ the Second Adam obeyed for you (Ro 5:19).
4. Jesus came to save very specific sinners for God (John 6:38-39; 10:26-29; 17:2-3).
C. Being in Jesus Christ includes a vital relationship to Him by a new regenerate man.
1. It is not enough to be in God’s will and Christ’s death, for your nature is corrupt.
2. Death in sin makes you a willing pawn of the devil on the way to hell (Eph 2:1-3).
3. If a man is not born again in Jesus, He will never enter God’s kingdom (Jn 3:1-8).
4. It is God’s will by the Spirit that brings about this fabulous event (John 1:13; 3:8).
D. Being in Jesus Christ finally results in each of God’s chosen ones with Christ forever.
1. Flesh and blood like you cannot enter heaven, so we are changed (I Cor 15:50-52).
2. This is called glorification when we will be even joint heirs with Christ (Ro 8:17).
3. This sure glorification depends on God’s purpose and predestination (Ro 8:28-30).
4. God intends to reveal His glory for eternity to some He chose in mercy (Ro 9:23).
A. God’s purpose is only for some elect in Christ. How can you know if it includes you?
B. Eternal life is something you are to lay hold of (I Tim 6:12,19), so are you in Christ?
C. Election is something you are to make sure of (II Peter 1:5-11), so are you in Christ?
D. Look carefully at the steps the Bible describes for getting into Jesus Christ yourself.
1. First, we are to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ (Gal 3:26; Acts 16:31; Jas 2:19).
2. Second, we are to be baptized into Jesus Christ (Gal 3:27; Mark 16:16; Col 3:1).
3. Third, we are to add good works to prove our faith (Jas 2:14-26; II Peter 1:5-11).
4. Fourth, we put on the new man in Christ’s image to be like Him (Col 3:10-11).
5. Fifth, we are to bear much fruit, and soul winning is only part of it (John 15:5).
E. How do you know if you are in Jesus Christ? This key question must be answered.
1. Do you have the lively faith He had in God – trusting Him always in all situations?
2. Do you have the love of righteousness and hatred for sin that Jesus Christ had?
3. Do you have the pleasure in worshipping and obeying God that He had while here?
4. Do you bear indignities, trials, sacrifices, and suffering for His sake like He did?
5. Are God’s people the most important on earth to you regardless of differences?
6. How do you know you love anyone or anything? Use the same measures equally.
7. Since a double minded approach is to forfeit, you must be single minded for sure.
F. How much change or growth has taken place in you? In heart and mind? At home?
1. Those of you known as critical and harsh … are you growing in love of mercy?
2. Those of you known as moody and negative … are you now joyfully content?
3. Those of you known as foolish or impulsive … do you love wisdom and prudence?
4. Those that have let a marriage slide … will you restore first love by first works?
5. Those with sharp tongues … will you fill this year with gentle words of health?
6. Those with old neglect of scripture and prayer … will this be a year of new zeal?
7. Those who have offered the blind and lame … will 2014 be exceeding magnifical?
8. Those who have things behind in which to rest … will you press forward to more?
A. The essential identity of a person in Christ is a new creature (II Cor 5:17; Gal 6:15).
1. Paul was a new creature, greatly moved by terror and love, but what about you?
2. Are you a new creature? New from worldlings? New from past? New from self?
B. What old things should pass away today with the old year before the Lord’s Table?
C. What new things should become visible today with the new year after communion?
D. How thorough is the conforming to the image of God’s Son in you (Rom 8:29)?
E. It is true you are a year older, but are you a year better? Judgment draweth nigh!
F. What say those around you, who know you best, is there plenty of proof of Jesus?
G. The cure is simple – run to Jesus Christ, repent of your sins, make all things new!
H. If you are not like Zacchaeus, then you will not hear the words of Christ to him.
For Further Study:
1. Sermon: Is Jesus Lord of Your Life?
2. Sermon: What Will You Do with God?”
3. Sermon: Love of Christ Constraineth Us.
2. Sermon: Exposition of II Corinthians 5.
4. Sermon: Restoring First Love.