The #1 Way To Live The Christian Life!

The sermon last Sunday included this line:

The only person who has ever been able to live the Christian life is Jesus Christ. (Jeremy White.)

For those thinking this is cause to despair of our own inability to live the Christian life, the good news is that you don’t have to because Jesus now lives in and through you:

I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. (Gal 2:20.)

That’s it. The Christian life is going on in your life because the One who lives it lives in you.

Christianity: it really is that simple.

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14 Responses to The #1 Way To Live The Christian Life!

  1. betsydecruz says:

    I’ve seen your comments on several blogs and finally got around to visiting yours. This post is good news, indeed.

  2. Bronwyn Lea says:

    “The Christian life is going on in your life because the One who lives it lives in you.” Now them’s words we can LIVE by!

  3. karen d says:

    Am I the perennial contrarian? I don’t understand statements like the one your pastor made. Perhaps it is just pushing my buttons, but it rings to me of the Christian life being one of moral perfection, of “doing it all right,” “not sinning,” being perfect and this just doesn’t seem to be the way things are sketched out in the Scriptures. Meaning, God doesn’t seem overly concerned with our moral efforts. God seems far more concerned with faith — and not how “big” our faith is but in Whom it is placed and how far we will go to engage as actual human beings with God. So maybe in context this is what your pastor was saying. I guess I’m just overly sensitive, having grown up in legalistic churches — I heard this sort of thing so much and it always had the net effect of either A) making me feel like a failure (and the focus was all on me and therefore trying harder, doing better, redoubling my efforts, etc) or B) making me downplay my humanity and my agency (because after all, its Jesus that does everything). I don’t despair anymore about failing to live the Christian life. I don’t think God expects me to! My sin is the place where grace abounds and where I learn the most about the character of God; my weakness is the place His strength is made most clear and I am growing to the point of actually enjoying being weak because I see so much better in those circumstances how far God will go to accompany me in our journey together. Uggh, I’m not saying this well. It is an entirely different paradigm than “The only person who has ever been able to live the Christian life is Jesus Christ. (Jeremy White.)” NOT that Jeremy means this — only that I am inferring it. Sigh. Maybe tomorrow I’ll be sit more easily with all this stuff. Sigh.

    • Tim says:

      Karen, Jeremy White would agree with everything you wrote (you can read my short review of his book here.) Living in Christ is not about striving for perfection nor about rejecting our human agency. It’s about the finished work of Christ.

      My title for this post was meant to be a parody of the people who teach that there is some way to live the Christian life “the right way”. The life we now have is life in the Spirit, and there is no need to search for the #1 way to live the Christian life. Rather, living the Christian is what Christians do as soon as they become Christians because our lives are defined by Christ, not by our actions.

      That’s what I meant by the second to last sentence. The Christian life is not about our actions. The Christian life is about the life of Christ in us.

      Tim

      P.S. You can be contrarian on my blog any day. You always get me thinking!

      • karen d says:

        OOOH, I missed the parody title! That’s the result of sleep deprivation on my part … I’m usually so good at picking it up 🙂 Thanks for the clarification Tim. I will read your review of White’s book ASAP. As to the “life of Christ in us,” yes that gets right to the heart of things! I’m just always surprised, the more carefully I read Scripture and try to get my own expectations out of the way, how rarely God seems to care about all the things we fixate on. When it says He looks at the heart, He really seems to mean that!

  4. Jeannie says:

    “Living the Christian life” seems to be one of those concepts we’ve made up to try to show what faith “should” look like — while it’s already happening in us regardless of our “shoulds.”

  5. Laruspress says:

    It really IS that simple. The old us is dead – it’s be that keep resurrecting it. If we can allow our surrender to keep lying down, the old stuff to stay dead, then the new – the stuff of heaven lives in us and we go along for the ride. Brilliant. Only God could think of it! Jesus takes what’s dead and the Holy Spirit helps us forward with what’s alive in Christ.

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