Conditions of Attaining to Holiness
By Charles G. Finney*
XXXIX. Another relation which Christ sustains to the believer, and which it is indispensable that he should recognize and spiritually apprehend as a condition of entire sanctification, is that of "Christ within us."
"Know ye not," says the apostle, "that Jesus Christ is in you except ye be reprobates." --2 Cor. 13:5. "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit if the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness." --Ro. 8:9,10. "My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you." --Gal. 4:19. "Yet not I, but Christ liveth in me." --Gal. 2:20. Now it has often appeared to me that many know Christ only as an outward Christ, as one who lived many hundred years ago, who died, and arose, and ascended on high, and who now lives in heaven. They read all this in the Bible, and in a certain sense they believe it. That is they admit it to be true historically. But have they Christ risen within them? living within the veil of their own flesh and there ever making intercession for them and in them? This is quite another thing. Christ in heaven making intercession is one thing; this is a great and glorious truth. But Christ in the soul, there also living "to make intercession for us with groanings that cannot be uttered," is another thing. The Spirit that dwells in the saints is frequently in the Bible represented as the Spirit of Christ and as Christ himself. Thus in the passage just quoted from the eighth of Romans, the apostle represents the Spirit of God that dwells in the saints as the Spirit of Christ and as Christ Himself. Rom. 8:9,10: "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the spirit is life because of righteousness." This is common in the Bible. The Spirit of Christ then, or the real deity of Christ dwells in the truly spiritual believer. But this fact needs to be spiritually apprehended and kept distinctly and continually in view. Christ not only in heaven, but Christ within us, as really and truly inhabiting our bodies as we do, as really in us as we are in ourselves, is the teaching of the Bible, and must be spiritually apprehended by a divine, personal, and inward revelation, to secure our abiding in Him. We not only need the real presence of Christ within us, but we need his manifested presence to sustain us in hours of conflict.Read the entire message ...
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