In I Corinthians 6:19 and 20 we find these two spiritual truths: “Ye are not your own”, “ye are bought with a price”. Very much the same fact is declared in Romans 14:7 to 9, which we quote
“For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself. For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord; whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s. For to this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived, that He might be Lord both of the dead and living.”
There may be a sense in which it can be said that man is a free moral agent. And yet the Bible clearly teaches that there are only two classes of people in the world; those who belong to Christ and those who do not belong to Christ. Concerning the latter class, their spiritual state is described in Ephesians 2:2 and 3, which we quote: “Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others”. In the thirteenth verse of this same second chapter of Ephesians we have this glorious message of redemption:
“But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.”
God’s Word tells us that His Son was manifested to destroy the works of the devil. That His incarnation was for the specific purpose of destroying the devil’s death power, by Himself dying and then conquering death. I John 3:8 and Hebrews 2:14. In Matthew 12:30, the Saviour declares; “he that is not with Me is against Me”. In the preceding verse He speaks of Satan as “the strong man”; and the sinner with his iniquity as the strong man’s house and his goods. And there the Son of God declares that the strong man must be bound before his goods can be spoiled.
According to Colossians 2:15 the Lord Jesus, by His death and resurrection, spoiled principalities and powers, triumphing over them. In Luke 4:1 to 13 we have the Divine Record of the conflict on earth between Christ and Satan and Christ’s complete victory over the Adversary. Thus we see, by the infallible Word of the living God, that the unsaved sinner is the property of Satan, and that the redeemed sinner is the property of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
In Titus 2:14, we learn that the Lord Jesus Christ gave Himself for us, “that He might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works:” What a wonderful verse of Scripture this is, because of the blessed and important truths herein declared. The Lord Jesus died to redeem us from all iniquity, and He redeemed us unto Himself; to be his peculiar people. He desires that we should be zealous of good works. We belong to Him.
This blessed truth is stated in I Peter 1:17 to 19: “Pass the time of your sojourning here in fear: Forasmuch as ye that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot”. Here we see that the believer’s sojourning on earth is to be passed in fear. Because the Lord Jesus Christ has paid such a precious price for his redemption. Truly the believer is not his own. We are bought with a price.
We are familiar with the history of Israel from the day God called them out of Egypt to the hour that they delivered Christ to Pilate to be put to death. What a sad history! What an inglorious record! Surely God did not exaggerate when He said, “The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib; but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider”. It was the confession of David concerning Israel, “God hath not dealt with any nation so”. And hear these words of God, recorded in Isaiah 43:1 and 7; “But now thus saith the Lord that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not; for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. Even every one that is called by My Name; for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him.” In a brief summary we have the history of Israel, told by the Lord Jesus in the Parable of the Vineyard, in Matthew 21:33 to 46; and also in Stephen’s message, recorded in the seventh chapter of Acts. It would be well for every Christian to read these two messages, and then hear the words of God in Romans 11:21 and 22, which we quote “For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest He also spare not thee. Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God; on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in His goodness; otherwise thou also shall be cut off”.
It is recorded in Luke 13:6 to 9 that for three consecutive years the Lord Jesus, while on earth, came to Israel to find fruit; but found none. That fig tree was to be cut down; and it was. Thus we see how sorely Israel disappointed the Lord, and how miserably they failed in their responsibility, although they belonged to Jehovah, who created them for His own glory.
But how about those of us who are members of the Body of Christ, sanctified by the offering of the blood of Christ, sealed with the Holy Spirit, saved by His precious blood, and seated with Him in the highest heavenlies? We have been blessed with all spiritual blessings in the heavenlies. We are accepted in the Beloved. We are the righteousness of God in Him. We are complete in Him. All things are ours in Him. Christ is our redemption, our holiness, our righteousness, our peace, our hope and our life. We have been raised with Him to walk in newness of life and to show forth the praises of Him Who hath called us out of darkness into His marvelous light.
Let us pass the time of our sojourning in fear. It is God’s command. We are not our own. We are bought with a price; the precious blood of Christ. We are His property. We belong to Him and all that we have belongs to Him. Our time is His; our gifts are His; and our money is His. We are to seek those things where He is at the right hand of God. Our citizenship is in heaven. Our hope is laid up in heaven. Whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s. In all things God wants Christ to have the preeminence. We leave with you again, Titus 2:14: “Who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto Himself a peculiar people zealous of good works.”
God grant that we may ever be faithful and not weary in well doing.
For more articles by Pastor J. C. O'Hair, visit the J. C. O'Hair Online Library.