What does Galatians 2:20 mean?

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by xdisciplex, Feb 20, 2007.

  1. xdisciplex

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    Gal 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

    I ask myself what does it mean when Paul said that from now on no longer he lives but Christ through him? Does this mean complete denial of yourself and only working in the ministry full time?
    Does this mean living like Paul and not having anything in this life? Paul had nothing. He really lived 100% for Jesus. He had no nice house, no hobbies, no family, nothing. He really did that. But how can a normal christian say that no longer he lives but Christ through him? Isn't this dishonest? I couldn't live like Paul. And when I know this then wouldn't it be hypocritical if I said that from now on no longer I live but Christ through me?
    Paul was on a totally different level. He was so determined. But he also saw Jesus. If Paul had not had these experiences with Jesus then maybe he would not have become so radical. Normal christians do not have such experiences. Maybe this also plays a role, I don't know. But I think it makes a difference in your determination if you saw Jesus or not. It's the same with heaven. Can you imagine heaven? I can't. But when I cannot imagine something then it's much harder to focus on it and to look forward to it. But if I had seen heaven then most likely I would be much more determined.
     
  2. DHK

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    Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

    1 Corinthians 15:31 I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.

    Luke 9:23 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.

    What was the cross used for? In Roman times it was used as an instrument of death, of execution. It was the way our Savior died, and it was the way the two thieves on each side of him died. It was the common method of putting someone to death.
    This verse has nothing to do with full time service. It has everything to do with following Christ and living a victorious Christian life. Jesus spoke of taking up one's cross just as Paul spoke of crucifying oneself. They are both the same teaching. It is an ongoing process, as Paul said: "I die daily." Every day I must crucify this flesh, deny myself, say no to the desires of the body, its wants, its desires, and yes to the desires of the Holy Spirit. I must be fully yielded to the Holy Spirit.
    Thus Paul says in Eph.5:

    Ephesians 5:18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

    The command is in the present continuous tense: "be ye continually filled with the Holy Spirit. We are always to be in a state of submission to the Spirit of God. We can only do that if our flesh is always crucified, or we are always denying what we want and saying yes to what the Lord wants.
    Paul said "it is not I, but Christ that lives in me."
    It is Christ that sits on the throne of my heart; not "I." is the meaning.
    This ought to be the goal of every Christian. It is how we live for him; how Christ desires us to live for him.
     
  3. xdisciplex

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    Does this mean that you have to be like a slave and you cannot do anything which you want to do before asking God for permission? :eek:
     
  4. DHK

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    Romans 1:1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,

    Romans 1:1 Paul, bondman of Jesus Christ, a called apostle, separated to God's glad tidings, (Darby)

    The word for servant is doulos or slave. Paul counted himself as a slave, and yet willingly so. He rejoiced in that privilege and would have it no other way. God's desires were his desires and vice versa. To do his will was the ultimate goal of his life. Nothing else counted in Paul's life.

    "For me to live is Christ; to die is gain."
     
  5. DQuixote

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    No. Read all of God's promises throughout scripture. One passage in scripture cannot be interpreted in isolation. No passage in scripture can be used to discredit another one. The message of God is a unified whole. Don't strip it of that reality.

    There are those who are called to be missionaries into some of the most dangerous places on earth, living lives that would horrify most of us. They have everything in the spiritual realm; the joy of the Lord is there daily feast.

    There are others who are called to preach the gospel all across the USA in major cities, with huge congregations. They cannot be said to have nothing in this life in the material realm. They are spiritually blessed, as well. They are doing precisely what God has called them to do.

    DHK is right on target in his initial response to your OP.
     
  6. SaggyWoman

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    Even though I have died to my old ways, yet I live because of Christ. And that life is lived through faith in Christ, faith that I can live again through him--who loves me and gave himself for me.

    That is a hard realization. But it ain't me that lives. It is him. And sometimes I have to die t myself daily--but it isn't a heavy death, it is a giving up of myself so that Christ can be in charge.
     
  7. BobRyan

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    It means you finally reached the point of turning your back on "its all about me -- its all for me" and you said "Christ I give up. My only focus now is to live for you -- create in me a clean heart oh God and renew a right spirit within me".

    It means that you have become "the New Creation" that old things are passed away. That the Law of God is written in the heart. That you are puting on the full armor of God and that "having done everything" you may now stand firm.

    It means that "press on for the prize" as Paul says in Gal 3. And that you do all this through Christ who LIVES IN you and enables you to do it. It means that salvation is a daily choice to "give up - surrender to Christ" and let Him live ini you today as He did yesterday. At any point you can go back to "its all for me I am done with that" - but... You can also choose to "persevere firm until the end".

    In Christ,

    Bob
     
  8. El_Guero

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    Isn't it a great passage?

    To be so close to Jesus . . . that you consider your life to be one with Christ. . . to even crucify your life with Christ upon the Cross.

    That is AWSOME!

     
  9. DQuixote

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    xdx, BobRyan almost got it right for a change. He did well until he wrote this:

    That isn't scriptural. If he had written "It means that fellowship is a daily choice," then he would have been on solid ground. He wrote well, then dropped the ball at that point. Don't buy into his yo-yo argument of falling in and out of grace, or J. Jump's argument that your spirit is in but your soul is out. God's mercy endureth forever.

    :godisgood: :jesus: [HS] <----invisible
    Notice how much God and Jesus look alike in the two smileys. The Holy Spirit was present when this photo was taken, but he is invisible. :laugh:

    Yup, blessed one in three, three in one, God the Father, God the Son, God the Spirit, sums up love.

    :1_grouphug: <---fellowship of the saints every Sunday.
     
  10. Amy.G

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    Excellent illustration, DQ! That's great! It made me laugh too!
     
  11. xdisciplex

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    But I don't understand how!

    Isn't it ridiculous when I say "I live for Jesus" and then have a totally boring life?
    I mean I can understand it when a missionary or somebody who clearly has an order from God and who does something meaningful says this but I have nothing meaningful. I get up, sit around and go to bed. I have nothing to focus on. And please don't come up with something like "Why don't you go to a nursing home and help old people?". This doesn't fly. I'm not the right person for such things. I don't like being around people and I'm also busy with my own problems. My life seems pretty senseless to me. I have no "vision" and no goal. Shall I think about God all day or what shall I do? The problem is that I simply have no clue how to put it into practice. If I stood all day at the marketplace and preached the gospel then I could say that I live for Jesus because everything I did was about Jesus but I don't do this. I also couldn't do this. I don't have the courage to and I'm also not a preacher. I simply think it's not honest if I said that I lived for Jesus when I don't even do such things. I also don't know if living for Jesus means that you have to totally deny yourself. Does this mean that if you like playing soccer that you will from now on totally deny everything which belongs to you, which would be your hobbies, your preferences and everything which is a part or an expression of yourself and instead you empty yourself and become like a borg? Is this what Paul means? That you become assimiliated and the only thing which is on your mind is preaching the gospel?
    Is this realistic? I have many other things on my mind, too. Since I don't know what to do I have to think about something or focus on something. How can I think about God all day when I don't even know what to do? Reading the bible isn't really something I look forward to because the bible is so hard to understand and it always frustrates me. How can reading the bible be the highlight of my day which I look forward to all day when I don't even get a sense of achievement? You cannot do anything for a long time when you never get a sense of achievement.
    I don't know. I adore those preachers which are so determined and so enthusiastic but I'm not on their level and I cannot simply decide to be like them, it doesn't work. I don't have this kind of determination. Compared to them I'm totally carnal and too focused on wordly things. But I don't know how to change this.
     
  12. Amy.G

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    Are you saying that we have to be a preacher or missionary to live like Jesus? Living "like" Jesus means to have His character, not His job. We are to be loving, kind, unselfish, "loving one another".
     
  13. DQuixote

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    What do you want to do?
     
  14. xdisciplex

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    @ Amy

    No, I think that "living for Jesus" means to be like Paul. Paul had nothing in his life. He was all about his mission. He could really say that he lives for Jesus. But how could I say this? I think it's ridiculous to compare myself to someone like Paul or someone who works as a missionary in poor countries.
    Jesus was all about evangelizing and saving the lost. Isn't it logical that if Jesus could decide what we should do that we would all do the same which he did? But many christians, like me, simply live their lives and besides this they are christians but their life isn't all about Jesus. Do you know what I mean? It's also very unfulfilling when you don't know what to do with your life. I don't know it. But christians always say that God has a plan. If God has a plan for me and I don't know it then I also cannot do it but this means that I live my life totally wrong and don't fulfill the plan.

    @ DQuixote

    What do you mean?
     
  15. DQuixote

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    You seem to be stuck. You seem to be unable to make a decision. Or unwilling. What do you want to do to get out of your prison? Are you still a student? What will you do with your degree? What are you doing to prepare for entering the job market? Perhaps God is calling you to be a linguist. Have you checked out the possibilities? What do you want to do? It sounds like you built the prison. Did you stick the key in your pocket?
     
  16. xdisciplex

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    ................
     
  17. DQuixote

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    Persons in tool and die shops make good money. Are you prepared to do that? Would an apprentice program be preferable to university? What about the forestry service? You'd be out there, pretty much alone, if you prefer to work alone. The pay is good. Are you physically fit? Can you get that way? So what if there are millions of linguists? Apply for a position. Your English is nearly perfect. I can show you websites all over the internet that Germans have built, with poor English constructs. Why not do that for internet sites, for governmental agencies, law enforcement -- the opportunities are limitless. You'd be hired on the spot by a company with contracts in the English-speaking world.
     
    #17 DQuixote, Feb 21, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 21, 2007
  18. xdisciplex

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    .................
     
  19. DQuixote

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    You've got a negative answer for every idea others share with you, biblical or otherwise, sad to say.
     
  20. Bible-boy

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    Hello Brother XDX,

    You have been given some very sound advice here. Reading through your posts I would not have known that you are German if you had not said so (or if I did not already know your BB profile). My wife's aunt is German. She married my wife's uncle when he was stationed over there in the Air Force. Anyway, she has a really great and high paying job working as an English to German and German to English translator. High tech companies working in the U.S., England, and Germany would jump all over someone with your language skills. However, you will never know if you do not take the time to investigate that job market, send out resumes, and see what happens. What can it possibly hurt to look into the possibilities? It sounds like you have plenty of time on your hands to check into what has been suggested. Then, if you do land a job as a translator do it as if working for the Lord and for His glory and honor. In that way you would be like Paul.
     

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