A. CAN THIS BE?
But whom He predestinated, these He also called; and whom He called, those He also justified. And whom He justified, these He also glorified. (Rom 8:30).
Most Christians understand that they have been justified and are being sanctified but are under the impression that they will only be glorified in the life hereafter, but that is not what the Bible teaches. Yes, the full glorification will only be bestowed on us in the life that is to come, but we are missing out on a whole world of glorification because we are ill-informed of our position in Christ, so let us see who we are in Christ.
B. PARADISE RESTORED
Do we realize that we may now once again walk in easy fellowship with God as Adam and Eve did? Paradise itself, the physical side of it, has not yet been restored, we are still living in a world of disasters in nature. That will only be corrected when the new heavens and earth are created.
What about the spiritual side of Paradise?
- It has at least been reset to what it formerly was – the manufacturers settings have been reset (speaking in electronic language).
- The old human Adam has been replaced by the new Heavenly Man, the perfect Adam.
- In fact, the new spiritual side of Eden is better than the old, for in the old the choice for, or against God, was still to be made, but now, for the Christian, it has been finally and irrevocably made. For him, Paradise will never again be lost.
- Adam and Eve were innocent of sin until the day they ate of the forbidden fruit; the Christian, however, is not only innocent but is clothed with the holiness of Christ (Zec 3:1-4).
- Adam and Eve were good and lived good lives, initially, but were not surrendered to the Holy Spirit like a Christian that is born-again by the indwelling Spirit.
Let us therefore rejoice as Christians that we have been glorified in that we have been lifted in Christ to a higher level than what Adam and Eve had been.
C. THE BRIDE OF CHRIST
And I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of Heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her Husband. (Rev 21:2).
The Bride of Christ is here pictured as a city because it consists of such a multitude of people. To be one of them, is to be uplifted to a very privileged position. It means that you are dearly loved; that Jesus is in love with you (stated in earthly terms). When a young man is deeply in love with a girl, he dotes on her, his thoughts are continually occupied by her. Are you aware that, that is exactly how Christ feels about you?
Heaven is and was a wonderful place, but something was missing there: there was no bride for the Son in all of that vast domain. As on earth none of the animals suited Adam as a wife, none of the angels or other heavenly beings were acceptable to be a bride for the Son. He needed somebody with whom He could share the secrets of his heart, someone He could hold in his arms, someone to whom He could say “I love you”.
So, He came down to earth and created a bride for himself in Adam and Eve. He was exceedingly pleased with her for she was created in his likeness, just like Eve was created in Adam’s likeness and he was greatly taken up with her.
However, when Eve sinned, Adam turned against her, accusing her of seducing him. Not so with Christ; he loved his Bride so much that when she sinned, He immediately came to her rescue saying “Father, I love her so much, I will go and die in her place so that she may be set free and I can continue having a love affair with her.” (My own words).
By being the Bride of Christ, you are glorified by God; you are highly favoured, exalted. Hallelujah! You are exceedingly precious to him.
Could it even be that the angels envy us this special position, so close to the heart of the Son?
Do yourself a favour by reading through the Song of Songs. Some of it is difficult to understand but note what the Bridegroom says about the Sunamite girl that he is courting and understand how excited Jesus is about his bride.
Behold, you are beautiful, My love. Behold, you are beautiful; your eyes are like doves’ from behind your veil; your hair is like a flock of goats that appear from Mount Gilead. (Song 4:1).
But, “Familiarity breeds contempt”. Will such familiarity not lead to contempt for the Son?” Oh no, never. A bride that truly loves her bridegroom will take great care not to shame him by misconducting herself and will rather, at all times, seek to uplift him and honour him in public.
D. SONS/CHILDREN OF GOD
But as many as received Him, He gave to them authority to become the children of God, to those who believe on His name, (Joh 1:12).
Behold what manner of love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God. … (1 Jn 3:1).
And if we are children, then we are heirs; heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ; ... (Rom 8:17).
In all nations of this world, true parents love to have children, acquire riches and especially fixed property, then train up their children to take over their estate while they sit back and enjoy watching them carry forward what the parents had started, perpetuating their family name.
With God it is very much the same. Being Spirit, He could not have complete joy in a physical, material world. He actually built it for his mankind children to manage and takes immense pleasure in seeing them doing so. He had complete confidence in Adam’s ability to name all the animals.
When Adam and Eve messed up their heritage, bringing a curse upon it, the Father did not disinherit them, but allowed them to continue cultivating it, while He was already planning new heavens and a new earth for them.
Is it not also significant that God does not require of us to address him as King or Creator but in the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus teaches us to call him “Our Father”.
Again, we see how we are daily living in an exalted position, being the very sons and daughters of the most high God, the Creator of it all.
E. OTHER TITLES TO WHICH WE MAY LAY CLAIM
- People of God
you who then were not a people, but now the people of God, those not pitied then, but now pitied. (1Pe 2:10).
- Church of God
Therefore take heed to yourselves, and to all the flock in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to feed the church of God which He has purchased with His own blood. (Acts 20:28).
- Body of Christ
And you are the body of Christ, and members in part. (1Co 12:27).
- Chosen generation; Royal priesthood; Holy nation
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for possession, so that you might speak of the praises of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; (1Pe 2:9).
- Temple of God
Do you not know that you are a temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? (1Co 3:16).
F. BELIEVE AND RECEIVE
May all this evidence convince us that we really are very special in God’s eyes. Let us every now and then set aside time to reflect on this truth so that a Scripture based picture of who we are in Christ may gradually be formed in our minds, working faith in our hearts to trust the Holy Spirit to sanctify us to the point where that glorious picture will become a reality in our daily living.
This is a practical way of overcoming our poor self-image as the offspring of Adam and Eve, an image which satan is continually holding up before us. No, no, that is what we were, but now we have been lifted to a higher level. Let us believe that, for what we believe is what we will get and will be.