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ABIDE: Life in Christ - Life With Christ | 1 John

Are you a Christian? How do you know? What does that mean? When there is crisis in your life, where there is uncertainty, when there is doubt, when you are unsettled, what do you turn to? How do you go on being grounded? Do you stay steady, measured, calm, or do you find yourself highly reactionary in your responses to life with wide swings? “Today is amazing! Oh no something bad happened the world is falling apart?” What is your anchor, your true north? As Christians, we are to have our hope, joy, anchor, guide, power come from one source, Jesus, and Jesus alone. If we are going to say we are Christians than we need to ask ourselves what makes someone a Christian. Am I a Christian? Christians know they are sinners, God saves sinners, and they know they have been Saved by Jesus Work. But being a Christian is no less than, but is also more than, merely believing the right things. Being a Christian is not just about affirming what is true about God and the world but finding and rooting themselves in the right person and place. To be a Christian is not to make a one-time decision, but to reorient your life to be a disciple of Jesus. Jesus didn’t go to the cross, suffer and die to purchase salvation for deciders but to purchase and redeem slaves to sin into the family of God to live new lives as disciples. To be a Christian is to be is someone whose whole identity is IN Christ. You have given Jesus your sin and He has given you His righteous identity. It is an instant exchange of identity, but it is also a lifetime journey of progressively living out your new identity looking less and less like your former self and more like Jesus. We’ve named this series “ABIDE: Life in Christ – Life with Christ”. Before Jesus went to the cross, as He’s teaching what it means to be a Christian/disciple, He calls His disciples to “Abide in Him”. 1 John uses this rich word numerous times to talk about life in Christ and life with Christ. ABIDE: To not depart, to be held and kept continually, to endure, to not perish, to remain as one, to survive, to live. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. – John 15:4-5 God’s desire for us is life! Life abundant and full. It is how He created the world from the beginning. Because of our sin and rejection of God as our king we have all been separated from the source of Life. Jesus comes into human history on a mission to redeem people from sin and separation and reestablish the life-giving connection between fallen creation and the Good Holy Creator. As Jesus preaches and teaches He is calling people from spiritual death to spiritual life and in doing so He calls people to “Abide in Me”. Like a branch cannot produce fruit when it’s been cut off, sin has cut us off from the source of life and flourishing. In Christ, we live as branches who “abide” (Being held and kept continually) with Jesus the vine! Jesus Abides in us (remains as one with us) because we are in Him. We are together, but distinct (He is the vine, we are the branches) We have been grafted into the vine and are part of the vine for a purpose, to bear fruit in our lives and the world. As branches we must remain (abide) in Jesus’ vine if we are going to be fruitful. Without Jesus, spiritually (and eventually physically in death) we can produce nothing. Abide is the word Jesus uses and John will use numerous times in 1 John to help describe what life in and with Christ looks like. Clarity is necessary because we are easily pulled and led to places of confusion and conflict. To be a Christian is to have our lives in Christ and to live our lives with Christ. We ABIDE.

April 16, 2023

All Things New | Curtis Hall

Speaker: Curtis Hall Series: Stand Alone Sermons Topic: Stand Alone Passage: John 20:11–18

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