The Indwelling Christ

“And they glorified God in me.” (Galatians 1:24)

One of the greatest doctrines of the Christian faith is the amazing truth that the Lord Jesus Christ indwells each believer through His Holy Spirit. “Christ liveth in me,” said the apostle Paul (Galatians 2:20), and, since that was true experientially as well as doctrinally, he could invite people to see Christ and hear Christ and follow Christ by seeing and hearing and following him. This might seem incredibly arrogant if it were not real.

He could say, for example, that “it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace, To reveal his Son in me” (Galatians 1:15-16). And he could say, as in today’s verse, that those who heard him “glorified God in me.” He also commanded, “Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you” (Philippians 4:9).

The Lord could say to His disciples, “He that hath seen me hath seen the Father” (John 14:9), and no one thinks it inappropriate because He fully manifested the heavenly Father in word and deed. Similarly, Paul said that “the truth of Christ is in me” and referred to “Christ speaking in me” (2 Corinthians 11:10; 13:3), noting that Christ was “mighty in me toward the Gentiles” (Galatians 2:8).

This was not boasting, for Paul acknowledged that “in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing” (Romans 7:18). Still, he was bold to exhort, “Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1).

Now the same Spirit of Christ who dwelled in Paul also indwells all true Christians, for “if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his” (Romans 8:9). We should be able to say with Paul, in practice as well as theory, that “Christ liveth in me.” HMM

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