1 John 2:6- Whoever says he abides in Him ought [as a personal debt] to walk and conduct himself in the same way in which He walked and conducted Himself. (Amplified Version)
Abiding in Christ and walking Like Christ:
These are the two blessings of the new life which are here set before us in this essential unity. The fruit of a life in Christ is a life Like Christ.
We are to abide in Christ. What does it mean to abide in Christ?
To “abide” means to live, continue, or remain.
So to abide in Christ is to live in Him or remain in Him. When a person is saved, they are described as being in Christ.
Romans 8:1- Therefore, [there is] now no condemnation (no adjudging guilty or wrong) for those who are in Christ Jesus, who live [and] walk not after the dictates of the flesh, but after the dictates of the Spirit. (Amp)
2 Corinthians 5:17- Therefore, if any person is [in grafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creation altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual conditions] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come! (Amp)
Therefore, abiding in Christ isn’t a special level of Christian experience, available to only a few; rather it is the position of all true Believers. The difference between those abiding in Christ and those not abiding in Christ is the difference between the saved and the unsaved.
The phrase “abiding in Christ” pictures and intimate, close relationship, and not just a superficial acquaintance. In other words, abiding in Christ is more than going to church every time the doors are opened. It is more than only calling on Him when you need something. It’s more than doing only what you can in your Christian lifetime to get by and go to heaven. It’s a personal one on One with God.
We’ll get into that in a little while.
John 15:4-7- Dwell in Me, and I will dwell in you. [Live in Me, and I will live in you.] Just as no branch can bear fruit of itself without abiding in (being vitally united to) the vine, neither can you bear fruit unless you abide in me. I am the Vine, you are the branches. Whoever lives in Me and I in him bears much (abundant) fruit. However, apart from Me [cut off from vital union with Me] you can do nothing. If a person does not dwell in Me, he is thrown out like a [broken off] branch, and withers; such branches are gathered up and thrown into the fire, and they are burned. If you live in Me [abide vitally united to Me] and My Words remain in you and continue to live in your hearts, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you. (Amp)
Jesus tells His disciples that having salvation is essential, using the picture of branches united to a vine. Without that vital union with Christ which Salvation provides, there can be no life and no productivity.
There are proofs of one who abides in Christ (Proof that one is truly saved and not just pretending):
1) Obedience to Christ Commands.
John 15:10- If you keep My commandments [if you continue to obey My instructions], you will abide in My Love and live on in it, just as I have obeyed My Father’s commandments and live on in His Love. (Amp)
1 John 3:24- All who keep His commandments [who obey His orders and follow His plan, live and continue to live, to stay and] abide in Him, and He in them [They let Christ be a home to them and they are the home of Christ.] And by this we know and understand and have the proof that He [really] lives and make His home in us; by the [Holy] Spirit Who He has given us. (Amp)
2) Following Jesus’ Example.
1 John 2:6- Whoever says he abides in Him ought [as a personal debt] to walk and conduct himself in the same way in which He walked and conducted Himself. (Amp)
3) Living Free From Habitual Sin.
1 John 3:6- No one who abides in Him [who lives and remains in communion with and in obedience to Him--deliberately, knowingly, and habitually] commits (practices) sin. No one who [habitually] sins has either seen or known Him [recognized, perceived, or understood Him or has had an experiential acquaintance with Him]. (Amp)
4) The Awareness Of A Divine Presence Within One’s Life
1 John 4:13- By this we come to know [perceive, recognize, and understand] that we abide (live and remain) in Him and He in us; because He has given (imparted) to us His [Holy] Spirit. (Amp)
As the fruit of our surrender to live wholly in Him, His life works so mightily in us, that our walk, the outward expression of the inner life, become like His.
The abiding in Christ always precedes the walking Like Christ. And yet, the aim to walk Like Christ must equally precede any large measure of abiding. Only then is the need for a close union fully realized, or is God free to bestow the fullness of His Grace, because He sees that the soul is prepared to use it according to His Design.
The life of the vine and the branch is so completely identical, that the manifestation of that life must be identical too.
When the Lord Jesus redeemed us with His Blood and presented us to the Father in His Righteousness, He didn’t leave us in our old nature to serve God as best as we could. No, in Him dwelt the Eternal Life, the Holy Divine Life of Heaven, and every one who is in Him receives from Him that same Eternal Life in its Holy Heavenly Power.
This Mighty Life of God in the soul, doesn’t however, work as a blind force, compelling us ignorant or involuntary to act Like Christ. Walking Like Him must come as a result of a deliberate choice, sought in strong desire, accepted of a living will.
God showed us in Jesus’ life what the life of heaven would be when it came down into the conditions and circumstances of our human life. And with Jesus, when we receive the new life from Him, and when He calls us to abide in Him, that we may receive life more abundantly points us to His own life on earth, and tells us that it is to walk even as He walked that the new life has been bestowed. “Even as I, so you also,” that Word of the Master takes His whole earthly life and very simply makes it he rule and guide of all our conduct. If we abide in Christ, we may not act like He did. “Like Christ” gives one shout out all-inclusive Word the Blessed Law of the
Christian Life. We are to think, to speak, to act as Christ did, as Christ was, even so are we to be.
He that seeks to Walk with Christ---Must Abide in Him!
With some there is the earnest desire to follow Christ’s example without any sense of the impossibility to do so, except by deep, real abiding in Him. They fail because they seek to obey the high command to love Like Christ, without he Only Power to do so---the Living in Christ. With others it is the opposite: they know their own weakness, and count the Walking Like Christ an impossibility. As much as those who seek to do it and who fail, do those who do it seek because they expect to fail, need to understand this. To Walk Like Christ one must abide in Him; he that abides in Him has the power to Walk Like Him, not by or in himself or his own efforts, but in Christ, who perfects His strength in our weakness.
If you’re falling into temptation and sinning continually, doing the same old stuff over and over again---ask yourself this question: “Am I truly Abiding in Christ?” Go even deeper ask yourself, “Am I reading, studying, and meditating on the Word of God. Am I spending time with God daily in prayer and getting to know Him on a personal level? Do I know more of Him than I did when I first received Christ? Have I grown in Christ? Am I obeying what He tells me to do and what not to do?”
I come to you right now and I give You my life. I long to abide in You and have You abide in me. I long to follow You in all that I say and do in this life. I desire to Walk Like Christ and to Abide With Christ. I desire to do as You have done. Lead me and guide me. Help Me as I strive to remain in You constantly every day. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen
We will continue this Bible Study next week in my home. But after I'm done with these I will try and post them on here as well. I pray that this Series draws you closer and closer to Christ and what He has planned for your life. If you would like to know more about Christ or need prayer, contact Minda at 573-421-5024.