Our Position in Christ

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"Everyone born of God overcomes the world"
1 John 5:4

Scripture tells us that when we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we become a "new creation" (2 Corinthians 5:17). We are "born again", or born from above (John 3:3,5). We become "children of God" (John 1:12; Romans 8:16; 1 John 3:10). We "participate in the divine nature" (2 Peter 1:4). (Unless otherwise noted, all Scriptures are from the New International Version, and any emphasis has been added.)

This change does not usually happen all at once, but continues throughout our life as Christians. It sometimes occurs so gradually that we hardly perceive it. But it is a tremendous change.

Christians are called to be overcomers. Most of us seldom act like overcomers. God "has given us everything we need for life and godliness" (2 Peter 1:3), but most of us often seem to feel defeated by circumstances or by our own inadequacies. I think part of the reason is that we have not fully understood or accepted what our position in Christ really is. We have not made it our own. We have not lived up to it. In this paper I want to sketch out at least some aspects of that position, as we find it described in Scripture.

As I reflect on the Scriptures dealing with our position in Christ I find many of them to be truly astonishing. I believe them in my mind, but it is hard to really believe them in my heart. I think we have to start simply with faith in what the Scriptures say. Whose report will we believe? Will we believe the eternal truths that God has revealed in his Scriptures, or will we believe our own feelings, impressions and ideas?

Do we believe that God is faithful? Do we believe that he will keep the promises he has made to us? Abraham believed a promise that, in the natural, seemed impossible of fulfillment, because he "considered him faithful who had made the promise" (Hebrews 11:11). Will we do the same?

Then we need to reflect on these Scriptures, to chew on them, to let them sink into our inmost being. As the word of God becomes "engrafted" in us (James 1:21 KJV), it is able to work in us (1 Thessalonians 1:13) and change us. The word of God is "living and active" (Hebrews 4:12). We need to hear the word, "believe it and not doubt" (James 1:6), and then "do what it says" (James 1:22). It is by our actions that we show what we really believe.

And so I invite everyone who reads this paper to ask God to "open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law" (Psalm 119:18). With Paul I pray, for myself as well as for you, "that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better", and that "the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe" (Ephesians 1:17-18).

As we consider these extraordinary promises of Scripture, let us also remember that "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him" (1 Corinthians 2:9).

Fasten your seat belts and here we go!

1. God is in us.

To say that God is in us seems astonishing, but it is Biblically true. From it flow a number of very important consequences.

"If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God" (1 John 4:15). "If we love one another God lives in us" (1 John 4:12). "Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him" (1 John 4:16). "We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit" (1 John 4:13).

The Holy Spirit is one member of the Trinity. He is God. And he dwells in us. Jesus said that we will know him "for he lives with you and will be in you" (John 14:17). Paul wrote that "You yourselves are God's temple and... God's Spirit lives in you" (1 Corinthians 3:16). "Your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God" (1 Corinthians 6:19).

Christ is also in us. If we will abide (live) in him he will abide (live) in us (John 15:4 KJV). God has made known to those who believe in him "this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory" (Colossians 1:27). Paul wrote, "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me" (Galatians 2:20). God has made us "alive with Christ" (Colossians 2:13).

Paul wrote, "You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ. But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness. And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you." (Romans 8:9-11). (I believe that "if" in this passage really means "when". Paul is saying that God does live in those who believe in Jesus Christ and are controlled by the Holy Spirit.)

Note how Paul speaks of the one who lives in us as "the Spirit of God", "the Spirit of Christ", "Christ" , and "the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead" (that is, the Spirit of the Father). While we usually speak of the one who lives in us as the Holy Spirit, it is really all three members of the trinity. It is God who lives in us, as John's epistle says.

This is absolutely astonishing. Almighty God created the physical universe by his word, and sustains the universe by the word of his power. He is truly awesome (in the original sense of that overused word). Scripture tells us that no one has ever seen God (John 1:18). God "lives in unapproachable light" (1 Timothy 6:16). Scripture gives us some magnificent visions of God but even they do not show his full glory. (See my paper on "Visions of God"). God's ways and his thoughts are far higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8-9). He is beyond our understanding (Romans 11:33-34). "His greatness no one can fathom" (Psalm 145:3).

And yet this same awesome God lives in me! He lives in each individual who has accepted Jesus Christ and received the Holy Spirit! The concept is so staggering that it is difficult to grasp, but it is what Scripture says. It does not matter whether we feel his presence or not. According to Scripture he is there.

When Solomon built a magnificent temple to God, he prayed, "But will God really dwell on earth with men? The heavens, even the highest heavens, cannot contain you. How much less this temple I have built!" (2 Chronicles 6:18). But now God lives in each believer. My body, your body (if you are a believer), is a temple in which Almighty God dwells!

In the temple, there was a holy of holies where God was thought to dwell. Only the High Priest could enter it, and he did so only once a year. Because of Christ's sacrifice on the cross, the curtain of the temple has been torn in two (Matthew 27:51) and we can all "approach the throne of grace with confidence" (Hebrews 4:16). But it goes beyond that. We now are the temple. God is in us. We have him with us continuously. We do not need to seek his presence, because he is already here. He is with us always (Matthew 28:20).

All too often, in our Christian life, some of us tend to pray earnestly, and cry out, for what we already have.

Often, in church or other places of assembly, we may ask God to manifest his presence. This is good. There are times when God does manifest himself more clearly and powerfully than at other times, and it is good to seek those experiences and to allow God's manifest presence to work in us. But what these Scriptures are saying is that God's presence is always with us, whether we are aware of it or not.

Jesus said "Where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them" (Matthew 18:20). There is a strength and power in gathering together in his name. But if I read correctly the Scriptures about God's presence within us, I believe they are saying that we don't have to have two or three gathering together. God is with us when we are alone. This is very important to know. If we are bed-ridden and cannot get to church, God is still with us. If we are persecuted and in prison, perhaps in solitary confinement, God is still with us. I once read of an American general who was captured by Italian terrorists. For over a year they kept him isolated. They kept earphones on his head and required him to listen to loud rock music for 24 hours a day. He found that, under these circumstances, he could feel the presence of God. I believe that nothing, except our own willfulness, can separate us from the presence of God (see Romans 8:35-39).

To avoid any possible misunderstanding I want to make one thing clear. I am not saying that we are gods, or equal to God. The God who is in us is the same as the "only true God" (John 17:3) who has existed for all eternity and who is separate from his creation. God is the creator. We humans are created beings. God is omnipotent. We humans can exercise such power as God chooses to give us. and for only as long as we continue to abide in Jesus. Jesus said, "apart from me you can do nothing" (John 15:5). The New Age picture of someone tramping an ocean beach shouting "I am God, I am God" is both ridiculous and blasphemous. But having said that, I go on to say that God has given extraordinary things to those who believe in Jesus Christ and continue to abide in him.

2. We are part of Christ's body.

Scripture expresses this truth in another way. We are part of Christ's body. We are as closely and intimately related to Jesus Christ, through whom the universe was created, as our neck or arms are related to our head!

All believers were "baptized by one Spirit into one body" (1 Corinthians 12:13). Paul compares this body of believers to the human body. We are part of each other, just as the hand, the foot, the eye, the ear, and other parts of the human body are part of each other (1 Corinthians 12:12-26). Then Paul says something amazing, "Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it" (1 Corinthians 12:27). "Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself?" (1 Corinthians 6:15). We are part of Christ's body! We are part of the body of Almighty God!

"In Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others" (Romans 12:5). "Speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together with every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work" (Ephesians 4:15-16). "Christ is the head of the church, his body" (Ephesians 5:23). "We are members of his body" (Ephesians 5:30).

In his great prayer the night before he was crucified, Jesus said, "I pray also for those who will believe in me through [the disciples'] message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one; I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them, even as you have loved me." (John 17:20-23). All who believe in Jesus Christ are to be unified because they are in Jesus Christ and in God.

What does all this mean? Just as the human body is formed of many parts, which are intimately bound together in many ways and form part of a single body, so we who believe in Jesus Christ form a single body, intimately bound together. But this is not just our body; it is the body of Christ. Christ is the head; we are the arms, legs, hands, feet, internal organs, etc. We are as intimately joined to Jesus Christ as our neck is joined to our head. We and he are part of one body. Not only is God in us; we are in God.

We often speak of wanting to have a closer relationship with God. These Scriptures say that we already have it. How can you have a closer relationship than that of the different parts of the human body? What we need to do is to recognize, appropriate, and live, this relationship that we already have..

Scripture uses another image to express this unity. We who believe are to become the bride of Christ (Matthew 9:15, 25:1-13; Revelation 19:7, 22:17). Scripture tells us that in marriage "'a man will leave his father and mother and will be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.' This is a profound mystery - but I am talking about Christ and the church" (Ephesians 5:31-32). So we, as the bride of Christ, will be united with him.

How can human beings, created objects, be joined so closely and intimately to Almighty God? Paul calls it a mystery, and I suggest that it is almost as great a mystery as the fact that Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man. But Scripture declares it to be true, and we can only give thanks that God has chosen to so unify us with his Son.

3. God speaks to us.

Jesus said, "My sheep listen to my voice; I know them and they follow me" (John 10:27). He told the religious leaders of the Jews, "He who belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God" (John 8:47).

The Holy Spirit is our teacher and guide. "He will teach you all things" (John 14:26). He will "guide you into all truth" (John 16:12). He "will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is to come" (John 16:13). He tells us the thoughts of God and enables us to understand spiritual things (1 Corinthians 2:10-16). He quickens the words of Scripture to our heart so that they become a word which God has spoken to us at that moment. We "live by the Spirit" (Galatians 5:16). We "drink" the Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:13).

It is often hard to think of God speaking to us if we picture God as "out there", at a great distance, speaking to us in an audible voice. Most of us seldom (if ever) hear an audible voice. But God is not just "out there. " He is also in us. I believe he is speaking to us much of the time, leading us, guiding us, and prompting us. Since we are part of his body, his speaking to us is no more difficult or unusual than the act of our brain in sending a hormone to some of our tissues to tell them to respond in a certain way. I believe this process of God speaking to us is so natural that we often fail to recognize it.

4. God works in us.

God is working in us to carry out his purposes for us. "He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus" (Philippians 1:6). "Continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose" (Philippians 2:12-13). The word of God "is at work in you who believe" (1 Thessalonians 2:13). God was "at work" in the ministries of Peter and Paul (Galatians 2:8). Paul spoke of God's "energy, which so powerfully works in me" (Colossians 1:29). God's word penetrates us and judges our thoughts and attitudes (Hebrews 4:12). We are made holy by "the sanctifying work of the Spirit" (2 Thessalonians 2:13; 1 Peter 1:2). God is working in us.

Part of the way God works in us is by enabling us to "live by the Spirit" (Galatians 5:16). The Holy Spirit lives in our spirit. He wants to be able to control our soul and flesh as well. The Spirit and the sinful nature "are in conflict with each other" (Galatians 5:17). They are at war with each other (Romans 7:23; 1 Peter 2:10). It is only as we learn to live "according to the Spirit" (Romans 8:4), to be controlled by the Spirit (Romans 8:6, 9), that we can find peace and please God. The result of learning to live by the Spirit is the fruit of the Spirit, "love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control" (Galatians 5:22-23). I believe it is because the Holy Spirit lives within us that he is able to work in us to bring us into obedience, and to give us the fruit of the Spirit. (See my papers on "The Importance of Obedience" and "The Fruit of the Spirit".)

5. We can become like God in character.

We are to be "transformed by the renewing of your mind" (Romans 12:2). "If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come" (2 Corinthians 5:17). Scripture tells us what this new creation is. "We, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit" (2 Corinthians 3:18). We are being transformed into God's likeness. We "put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness" (Ephesians 4:24), "the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its creator" (Colossians 3:10). We have "the mind of Christ" (1 Corinthians 2:16). We "participate in the divine nature" (2 Peter 1:4). "In Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ" (Colossians 2:9-10).

The transformation these passages speak of is drastic and total. The word rendered "transformed" in Romans 12:2 and 2 Corinthians 3:18 is metamorphoo. It speaks of a metamorphosis, a change like that from a caterpillar to a butterfly. Again, when Paul speaks of the "old self" and the "new self" he is speaking of a complete and total transformation. We become a "new creation." The process takes time; it is not instantaneous. But its aim is a total transformation. (See my paper on "Be Transformed by the Renewing of Your Mind".)

Originally, God created mankind "in his own image" (Genesis 1:27). With the Fall in Eden, man lost much of this image. Now, as a result of Jesus' sacrifice on the cross, the image of God, in which we were originally created, has been restored for those who believe in Jesus Christ. We are transformed into God's "likeness", into the "image" of our creator. We have his mind. We participate in his nature. We have his "fullness".

We see this clearly expressed in Romans. "If, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God's abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ? Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men. For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous" (Romans 5:17-19).

Paul emphasizes the magnitude of this change by referring to Adam as "the first Adam" and to Jesus Christ as the second (or last) Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45-49). (Note that the name, "Adam" means "a human being", "mankind".) With the coming of the second Adam, the ground lost by the first Adam has been retaken.

I think it is not overstating it to say that Jesus Christ's sacrificial atonement on the Cross has resulted in a new species. Those who believe in Jesus Christ are a "new creation". We are born from above. We become "children of God", "born of God" (John 1:12-13), while those who reject Jesus are children of the devil (John 8:44). There are now two kinds of humans, "children of God" and "children of the devil" (1 John 3:10). There are two kingdoms, "the dominion of darkness" and the "kingdom of the Son he loves" (Colossians 1:13).

6. We can use God's power.

Paul prayed that the Ephesians would have the eyes of their heart enlightened so that they might know God's "incomparably great power for us who believe" (Ephesians 1:19). God is "able to do immeasurably more than we ask or imagine according to his power that is at work within us" (Ephesians 3:20). God's incomparably great power is at work within us. We may not feel it, but Scripture says that it is there.

"Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power" (Ephesians 6:10). In context this passage relates to spiritual warfare against the enemy of our souls, but I believe it has a broader application. I believe God wants us to live every aspect of our life in his strength and his mighty power. "In him we live and move and have our being" (Acts 17:28) We should do everything "in him" and "in his mighty power". Apart from him we can do nothing (John 15:5). I believe that in all things we can draw on the mighty power of the God who lives in us and in whom we have our being.

Paul wrote "I can do everything through him who gives me strength" (Philippians 4:13). He wrote, "I will boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me" (2 Corinthians 12:9). He prayed that the Colossians would be "strengthened with all power according to [God's] glorious might" (Colossians 1:11).

While on earth, Jesus Christ ministered "in the power of the Spirit" (Luke 4:14). He told his disciples "you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you" (Acts 1:8). This occurred on the Day of Pentecost and from then on they ministered in "great power" (Acts 4:33; see Acts 2:43, 5:12, 8:6-7). Peter made it clear that the promise of this power is "for all whom the Lord our God will call" (Acts 2:39).

"Power", dunamis, is a mighty power, a power to work miracles. Strong defines it as "force..., specifically miraculous power". Jesus made the astonishing declaration, "Anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these" (John 14:12). So the "incomparably great power" that God has given us is a power to do greater works than Jesus did! (See my paper on "Doing the Things Jesus Did").

This is not just a power to do "signs and wonders", although I believe it includes that. It is also a power to do things that may be much more difficult. It is a power to love (as God would have us love), to forgive those who have wronged us deeply, to get rid of all bitterness, to "throw off everything that hinders" (Hebrews 12:1), to persevere in the face of great obstacles, to "live by the Spirit", to show the fruit of the Spirit, to minister in love to others, and much more. It is God's power to become what we could never become on our own. Grace came through Jesus Christ (John 1:17), and part of the definition of grace is "God's influence working in us." It is only by God's power working in us that we can possibly hope to become like God in character and to "have the mind of Christ."

I find all this astonishing. Of ourselves we are weak and fallible. Of ourselves we can do nothing. But the Almighty God, who created and sustains the universe, has made his mighty power available to us. He has enabled us to "be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power." By the mighty power of God working in us we can overcome the world, we can be more than conquerors, we can surmount every difficulty and problem we may face. Whatever our problems or difficulties may be, the one who lives in us is greater. We need to learn to believe this, to feel it, and to act on it.

7. God has given us dominion.

God made man "a little lower than the angels" (Hebrews 2:7, quoting Psalm 8:5). The Hebrew word translated "angels" is elohim, which is one of the words for God. It was Elohim who created the universe (Genesis 1:1). So man was made a little lower than God. (Note that in 1 Corinthians 6:3 Paul said "We will judge angels.") Mankind was given a status just below that of God himself.

God gave Adam dominion over all the earth. He told him to "subdue" it and "rule over" it (Genesis 1:28). Because of Adam's sin, this dominion was taken away. In the wilderness satan offered to give Jesus all the kingdoms of the earth if he would bow down to him (Matthew 4:8), and Jesus did not question satan's ability to make the offer. But now man's original dominion has been restored for those who believe in Jesus Christ. For example, Jesus calmed the storm on Lake Galilee, and later he told the disciples that those who had faith in him could do the things he did (John 14:12). He told his disciples that, by faith, they could move mountains (Matthew 17:21, 21:21). This is dominion.

In Christ, we can overcome the world. "Everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God" (1 John 5:4-5). We are "more than conquerors" (Romans 8:37). We can "reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ" (Romans 5:17). We have "authority... to overcome all the power of the enemy" (Luke 10:19). If we submit ourselves to God we can "resist the devil, and he will flee from you" (James 4:7). We can "overcome" evil spirits because "the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world" (1 John 4:4). If we are "strong in the Lord and in his mighty power" we can stand against the devil and his evil spirits (Ephesians 6:10-18). We have been given weapons that have "divine power" to cast down strongholds, to demolish "every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God" and to "take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ" (2 Corinthians 10:4-5). "The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet" (Romans 16:20). As a praise song says, "I've got the Victor living in me."

8. Eternal life.

Because of Adam's sin, God took away eternal life from him (Genesis 3:22). Now that eternal life has been restored. Whoever believes in Jesus "shall not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16). This is the most tremendous gift that God could give us. I have left it to last, because I wanted to focus on what God has done for us in our life now on this earth.

Even this gift has consequences for our life on earth. (1) It gives us hope. "God has given us new birth into a living hope" (1 Peter 1:3). Whatever the circumstances may be, the Christian believer always has hope in Christ. (2) It changes our priorities and perspective when we recognize that, even here on earth, we are living in eternity. Paul expressed this when he wrote, "We fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal" (2 Corinthians 4:18).

Conclusion

I think I have said enough to indicate that, as believers, our position in Christ is extraordinary. The problem is that many of us do not act as if we believe it. We do not act as if we are overcomers and conquerors. We do not act as if we have God's power available to us. We do not act as if we have God's character. We do not act as if we believe that God is in us.

Our homes are connected to the electric power plant. We have access to a large source of power, generated by burning coal or by tapping the power of falling water. All we have to do is plug in an appliance or turn on a switch. No one would think of trying to operate a vacuum cleaner or a power saw that was not plugged in. In our lives as Christians we have access to the power that created the universe. But all too often we fail to connect to it. We do not use it. We act as if it wasn't there.

I think a major part of the problem is unbelief. We read these astonishing scriptures. Our mind accepts them. But in our hearts, in our guts, we can't quite believe they are really true. We need to pray, "I do believe. Help me overcome my unbelief" (Mark 9:24). We need to think about these Scriptures, chew on them, make them a part of us, let them work in us.

Another part may be that we simply do not feel we can handle all this power. Again, I refer to my image of the power plant. We could not handle power at the voltages at which it is generated. So the power plant has a transformer, or a series of transformers, to bring it down to a voltage we can handle God knows how much of his power and glory we can handle. He does not expose us to more power than we can handle safely or wisely. He does not come inside us in all his glory and magnificence; he comes inside us in his Holy Spirit whose presence we often hardly notice. We need not be afraid that he will overpower us.

Yet another part of it may be our pride. We like to think, "I can handle this. I don't need any help." We need to get to the point that Paul had arrived at when he said, "Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me" (2 Corinthians 12:9). "God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble" (James 4:6).

We need to know, to believe with all our hearts, all the time, that in all things we can be overcomers, we can be more than conquerors, because we have one in us who is greater than he that is in the world, greater than any obstacle or difficulty we may face. The God who is in us is greater than anything we may face, whether it be physical or mental illness, habits or addictions, financial difficulties, problems with relationships, bitterness, unforgiveness, faulty mindsets, or whatever. God knows our needs. If we "seek first his kingdom and his righteousness" (Matthew 6:33) he will provide whatever we need. If we are "strong in the Lord and in his mighty power" (Ephesians 6:10), we can overcome whatever problems and difficulties we may face. Just as God "will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear" (1 Corinthians 10:13) so, I believe, he will not allow us to be burdened beyond what we can bear, and he will, in every situation, give us the strength to overcome.

In dealing with any troubles, obstacles or problems we may encounter, we operate from a position of strength. We have Almighty God in us, and he is greater than any difficulty we may encounter. He gives us his mighty strength and his incomparably great power. We are made in his image and partake in his nature. We are overcomers and conquerors.

David faced and defeated a giant. He did not look at how big and powerful the giant was; he looked at how much bigger God was. "You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty." "The battle is the Lord's and he will give all of you into our hands" (1 Samuel 17:45, 47).

When we face our own giants we need to know who we are in Christ. It is to stir up an awareness of our position in Christ, and the incomparably great power that he has made available to us, that I have written this paper.

 

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     11/18/2003