When it comes to walking in Christ, it depends on the salvation we received. Walking in Jesus requires the only way God ordained for man to be saved. For that way is the only way God dwells in us in the Spirit. Proper salvation procedure ensures we come to know Christ just as God deemed. There are many believers that cannot walk in Him as He wishes, because their salvation is not from God’s perspective. Yet, it does not mean that the one whose salvation is of God does not sin. But, it means that he or she do not doubt their eternity with God and by the grace lavishly granted in salvation, they are made to rise up if they fall. Of the latter they are confident, since God saved them by grace through faith.
Although the Bible explicitly says that none are saved by works, many are adamant on doing works for salvation. There are others who maintain that it is sustained by works. Works can never save us, since faith that comes from the Word can only be made permanent in us by grace. In other words, faith is credited as righteousness to us apart from works. When God gives grace to save us, He in fact acknowledges our faith as true and hence, the righteousness. Now, an individual is truly saved. Each one claiming to be saved must have gone through this procedure and they experience the depths of grace. It is a personal experience and so, the need for each one to accept the Lord as his or her personal Savior. Then God adds works to our salvation so that we walk in Christ. Paul said, “Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him” (Col. 2:6).
If we have received Christ by faith, we walk in Him by faith, since the grace bestowed on us compels us to rest on the faith we first exercised in Him. It means we do the works God appointed to us in faith. Grace never separates from us because of the faith we exercised; for it comes as a gift. And the faith we demonstrated for salvation cannot be nullified, as it has been attested by grace. This faith called on the blood of Christ to redeem us from all sin – the past, present and future. Therefore, Paul elsewhere in the Spirit said that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ. It is for this reason that though at times we fall, i.e. sin, we are kept alive in Christ; the substance of grace eventually pegs us back into the faith that permitted God to save us. Nevertheless, Paul’s exhortation implies that if we walk in Christ just as when we first received Him, i.e. by a faith that is apart from doubt or corruption, we can go on to do great things for God. Both our recovery into faith and our practice of pure faith is made possible by the Christ “who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds” (Tit. 2:14).
God purified us once for all in Christ at the cross. A proper salvation ensures that we are zealous for good deeds; for God who purified us permanently leads us to them by grace. In other words, He convicts us for them. So, if you’ve sinned against Him in any form and are unable to perform His will, call on His grace and He will show you the way He has made for you to satisfy Him; for He has already redeemed you from every lawless deed. Your calling is not for salvation, but for strength to come out of sin. You can again walk in Christ just as when you first received Him. You will further understand the depths of grace. “For the gospel has for this purpose been preached even to those who are dead, that though they are judged in the flesh as men, they may live in the spirit according to the will of God” (1 Pet. 4:6).
What grace does for us from the time we are saved is same as it did when it first saved us. It separates us from the world. It gives us a unique identity. While we were dead as sinners, God redeemed us to Him by the gospel. While this may not have gone well with those who counted us with them and have judged us as inferior, extreme, destructive or foolish, yet it will have no bearing on our faith. For grace constantly enables us to live in the spirit according to that which God apportioned to us – we walk in Christ. We become enemies of the world, but are friends with the Almighty God. The notion of living in the spirit is that our inner man is constantly nurtured by grace. There will be peace, joy and comfort regardless of our situation.
So then let us examine the things that take place when we walk in Christ by saving faith.
- We receive. Paul experienced receiving and said, “That He [God] would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man” (Eph. 3:16). When we are determined to walk in Christ, our Father does not leave us without help. No one can measure of the riches of His glory. To each one it differs according to his or her calling and it is beyond measure. But the truth is we realize our inner man being strengthened by God’s Spirit for everything He called us to do. We apply or take of those riches and please Him.
- We do not concede. “And Jason has welcomed them, and they all act contrary to the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, Jesus” (Acts 17:7). There’s no law on earth or power to which we relent other than honoring and worshipping our Lord. Our saving faith powered by grace gives the zeal for it. We do not war in the flesh and still, we do not concede to the works and schemes of men.
- We wait on Christ. Sometimes we have to wait on the Lord to perform His works. Whether to redeem or supply us, there comes a time when our strength, wisdom and resources are insufficient and we have to depend on Him. Walking in Christ implies we trust Him unconditionally to make us victorious. And hence, Paul too at one place said that their adequacy comes from God. When the time came for the 5000 to be fed, Jesus asked the disciples to feed them. But it was such an impossible task for them. As they stood helpless, Christ Himself took charge and did a work to which we all have a basis for faith in Him. The disciples walked in Him, for they listened to Him – “They did so, and had them all sit down” (Luke 9:15) – and He did the rest.
- We become like Him. Jesus said, “It is enough for the disciple that he become like his teacher, and the slave like his master…” (Matt. 10:25). The Lord prepares us to be a teacher, disciple and servant in His stead. By walking in Him by faith, He incorporates in us the deeper things of salvation. He turns us into a people of His voice. We become vessels of grace to those who desperately need redemption.