or having died with
for example, Colossians 2:20; 3:3; and 2 Timothy 2:11. An extended discussion on the subject is found in Romans 6:3–14.
Since no believer was literally crucified with Christ,
the phrase crucified with Christ
is symbolic for a
Galatians 2:20 is a key passage:
“I have been crucified with Christ and I
no longer live, but Christ lives in me.
The life I now live in the body,
I live by faith in the Son of God,
who loved me and gave himself for me.”
The context of Galatians 2 is how
the believer is made right with God.
were telling the Galatian churches
that faith in Christ was not enough.
To be saved,
they said, believers must also be circumcised and become
would they be
right with God.
In Galatians 2:15–16 Paul counters that idea: “We who are Jews by birth and not sinful Gentiles know that a person is not justified by the works of the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no one will be justified.”
"Through the law I died
to the law so
that I might live for God”
While Paul was trying to
please God by keeping the Law,
he was not really
living for God.
The more he tried to keep the Law,
the more he saw how much
It was only when he gave up trying to achieve
righteousness on his own and accepted the
righteousness of God by faith in
Christ that he truly began living for God.
Justification by faith
actually makes it possible to live for God.
Being crucified with Christ means that we are no longer under the penalty of the Law. That penalty was paid by Christ on our behalf. When Christ was crucified, it was as if we were crucified with Him. The penalty was fully paid—just as surely as if we had been crucified for our own sins. When Christ rose from the dead, we rose, too. Now the risen Christ empowers us to live for Him in a way that pleases God. We used to seek life through our own works, but now we “live by faith in the Son of God” (Galatians 2:20).
Being crucified with Christ means that we are new creations.
“If anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:
The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
The old life is dead and gone.
We walk in newness of life (Romans 6:4).
Being crucified with Christ means that we have a new love.
The love of the things of this world have been crucified (Galatians 5:24).
Now we love Christ, though we have not seen Him (1 Peter 1:8).
Being crucified with Christ
means that we have a
We are dedicated to the service and
glory of the Lord,
and that dedication destroys
selfishness and surpasses
ties to family and friends.
We have taken up our cross to follow Him
Being crucified with Christ means that we have a new way of life. At one time we “followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient” (Ephesians 2:2). But that way of life was nailed to the cross. Now we follow Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, and we seek to please Him in every way (Hebrews 12:2).
The idea of being crucified with Christ emphasizes our union with Him and His death on our behalf. We trust in Christ’s crucifixion as payment for our sin penalty, and we rely on His power to live in a way that pleases God. The emphasis is on what He has done for us, not what we have to do for God. Too often, “I have been crucified with Christ, and it is Christ who lives in me” becomes “I need to crucify my sinful desires and try harder to live for God.” When this becomes our perspective, we have slipped out of grace-living and back into law-living, and we minimize the power of Christ’s death for us. We are relying less upon the power of Christ and more upon our own power—and that will never work out well!
In short, Galatians 2:20 tells us how we escaped the penalty of sin to live a life that pleases God. Knowing that we are “crucified with Christ” should give us great encouragement in our Christian walk. We have the power to say “no” to sin and “yes” to God.
phesians 4:4-6 says, "There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all." Since there are different "baptisms" referred to in the New Testament, it can be a bit confusing when we read about "one baptism." The word baptize always means “to submerge or immerse.” So, when baptism is discussed, it involves a person being totally submerged into something else. Baptism implies being "all in." It also implies that a change has taken place. Baptized people are changed people.
Generally speaking, there are two types of baptism: a physical (water) baptism and a
One is done in water; the other is
accomplished in the Holy Spirit.
Water baptism was commanded by Jesus for all of His followers (Acts 1:8). Colossians 2:12 says, "Having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead." Being baptized with water does not save us; faith in the finished work of Christ saves us (Ephesians 2:8-9; Romans 10:9). But water baptism is an outward indication of an inward change. It is a wonderful picture of Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. Being immersed in water symbolizes the cleansing of our hearts and the washing away of our sin by the blood of Jesus (Acts 2:38). Through water baptism, believers publicly proclaim their testimony that they have been born again by the grace of God.
Romans 6:3 speaks of a spiritual baptism: "Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?" This spiritual baptism “into Christ” is performed by the Holy Spirit the moment a repentant sinner accepts the gift of salvation and is born again (John 3:5; Ephesians 2:18; 1 Corinthians 12:13; Acts 8:12). We respond to the Holy Spirit’s drawing and are born into God’s family (John 6:44; 1 Corinthians 6:19). By this "baptism," we are identified with the death and resurrection of Jesus; from then on, we consider ourselves "crucified with Christ" (Galatians 2:20). We choose to lose ourselves and be immersed in Him (Matthew 16:24), and the Holy Spirit makes that happen.
The baptism of the Holy Spirit was promised by John the Baptist, who said that Jesus “will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire" (Luke 3:16). No one understood what John meant until after Jesus had ascended back into heaven (Acts 1:9). Jesus had promised the disciples that He would send "the Comforter" (John 14:26; 15:26; Luke 24:49). His followers were to wait in Jerusalem until the "promise from the Father" came (Acts 1:4). That promise came in Acts 2. The Holy Spirit was poured out on the disciples, and they were never the same again. They were bold in their witness, empowered to perform miracles, willing to endure persecution, and all but one died a martyr’s death. The church had begun. Throughout the book of Acts, that baptism by the Holy Spirit was repeated as people came to know Jesus, both Jew and Gentile, and served to unify the church as the Jewish believers realized that the Holy Spirit was poured out on their Gentile brothers as well.
There are some differences of opinion among believers concerning the baptism of the Spirit. Some Christians believe Holy Spirit baptism is identical to being baptized into Christ and that it occurs at the moment of salvation, even if the believer is unconscious of it. Other Christians believe Holy Spirit baptism is to be equated with the filling of the Spirit and that often occurs after salvation—years later, perhaps—as the believer opens himself up to the Spirit’s control. Some believe that the baptism of the Spirit is always accompanied by signs (such as speaking in tongues), and others believe that such signs are unnecessary.
When Paul wrote to the Ephesian believers about "one baptism," he was reminding them that, regardless of their background or nationality, they all served the same Lord, shared the same faith, and had experienced the same baptism. He could be referring to water baptism; i.e., all believers have the same testimony of salvation and have been baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Or he could be referring to Spirit baptism; i.e., all believers have been placed into the Body of Christ through the Spirit’s power. Either way, the emphasis is on unity among Christians. Verse 3 says, "Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace." The Holy Spirit works to unify believers and provides assurance that they are children of God (Romans 8:16; Ephesians 1:13-14). By reminding the church that they all had a similar testimony and that they were all partakers in the same Holy Spirit, Paul encouraged them to work together for the cause of Christ so that the message of redemption would continue to spread throughout the world (Matthew 28:19).