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  Bro. Tom’s Weekly Bible Study
  Week #82
Posted: June 2, 2006

IN CHRIST
A Study of Positional Truths
 

How our hearts are overwhelmed as we start our 82nd IN CHRIST study.  Many of these have included several IN CHRIST statements.  Paul used this phrase well over a hundred times.  We are just going through ‘Possessing our Possessions’.  Two more IN CHRIST phrases are mentioned in I Timothy 1:13-17 when Paul said, “Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love, which is in Christ Jesus. This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting. Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory forever and ever. Amen

In this great text Paul mentions three great truths of which we would like to use as the grounds of our study.  The first is ‘Possession In Me’.  Paul sees four things he possesses because of the indwelling Christ.  In verse 13 he said, “…but I obtained mercy,” The word ‘obtained’ means to get because one has met with light or a lot has fallen upon them.  The word ‘mercy’ means to withhold from one what they deserve.  O, what a grounds for rejoicing.  In verse 14 he said he got ‘abundant grace’.  The word ‘abundant’ means to fill or strengthen with an exceeding number, multiplied, a multitude in number.  It is our word ‘super size’.  Let us not forget that wherever sin abounds, grace will much more abound.  Paul tells us IN CHRIST he received ‘faith’ and ‘love’.  Faith is the ability given as a gift to one to believe the unbelievable, see the unseeable, and rest upon the unsearchable.  Paul was also given ‘love’ because of the indwelling Christ.  Love is the attribute of Christ that would cause one to offer their self as a sacrifice because of the value they place on the one loved.  Can we imagine all of that and heaven too?

The second truth we see in our text is not only our ‘Possession In Me’ but His ‘Patience With Me’.  Paul tells us in verse 16 that God showed him ‘longsuffering’.  The word used is the utmost of longsuffering.  It is made up of two words, one of which means long spirited.  The second means an emotion that moves the whole inner man towards judgment but it is restrained from yielding to this passionate anger.

We are told in verse 15 that the only reason Christ came into this world was to save sinners.  Paul said, ‘he was the chief of sinners’.  The word ‘chief’ is superior, above all, the worst of the lot.  Paul says in verse 16 that God and he are a ‘pattern’ to all that would later believe.  The pattern says if He saved Paul the Christian killer He will save anyone.  

We have looked at two truths from our text, ‘Possession In Me’ and ‘Patience With Me’.  Let us now look at verse 17 were we find ‘Praise From Me’.  Paul is overwhelmed with his position IN CHRIST and he breaks out in a doxology of praise.

The word ‘now’ in verse 17 expresses a continual point of focus.  Paul calls Christ the King of all ages.  He sees Christ as ‘immortal’. (Uncorrupted, without decay)  He is ‘invisible’. (A Spirit that can be felt but not seen)  He is the ‘only wise God’.  There is no God beside Him.  What gives Him the ‘only God’ status?  All the other religious leaders lie dead in their graves, but our God yet liveth.  Paul erupts by giving Him ‘honour and glory’.  The word ‘honour’ means to place a high value upon.  The word ‘glory’ has the idea of adoring by doing simple and silly things.  Paul does it now with anticipation of doing it forever.

Does your position IN HIM cause you to be stoic and stone faced in places of worship?  Or do you find from time to time that something erupts like dynamite in you and water flows from your eyes, your hands become light and lifted, your feet are free to stand, and your tongue is loosed to tell of His goodness to you?
 

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