I have been thinking a lot about the Exchanged Life and how so many miss the mark in their understanding of some very basic biblical truths. Often I have had exchanges with people that end very sad ways as they argue with me over these things. They seem to desire to hang on to what is not true as if it was a talisman that could pull them out of any trouble they may fall into. I often pray for many who have fallen from Grace to works and miss that there is so much more to the Christian Life than they realize.
Don’t get me wrong. These are not stupid or ignorant people. Often they are very educated and can pull out the bible, quote from memory or even are fluent in the original languages. To me this is no real surprise as Jesus spoke directly to people in their own language and they did not understand thing either.
One of the biggest errors people commit is to mistake the written word with the Living Word. Meaning they unintentionally worship the Bible and seek in it the life they desire. The Bible is called the word of Life or the word of truth, yet often most miss it is not the word that gives life or that is “truth” in and of its self, rather it leads us to Truth. Jesus stated such in
John 5: 39. You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me, 40. yet you refuse to come to me to have life.
Jesus pointed out that knowledge of the written word is not enough, that the Bible cannot give Life. It is only in the Son we have Life. John furthers this thought in his epistle:
1 John 5: 11. And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 13. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.
Just recently I was in an argument with a man who professes to be one who has discernment, yet he insisted that one must be saved by what one believes. I tried to point out it is not “what” we believe, but in Whom we believe in.
The second error that many fall into is that the bible is the source of all truth. I have written a lot about Jesus being The Truth. In fact I was taken to task for stating this by some who insist that I am wrong and that Jesus only “taught” truth. Yet, they miss Jesus IS The Truth and that He alone is the source of all Truth just as Jesus is the source of all Life.
Jesus in not a propositional statement, He is a person. With out Jesus the bible fails in being true. For if the bible points to Jesus, then there must be a reason. The reason is that Jesus is the very source from which the bible has any truth in it.
The exchanged life is when we take our faith in our belief and knowledge and exchange it for the Person of Jesus. John Hudson was a missionary to China and is credited as the originator of the phrase “The exchanged life” here is a passage from his diary.
"... God made me a new man! God has made me a new man!" Wonderful was the experience that had come in answer to prayer, yet so simple as almost to baffle description... Do you know, I now think that this striving, longing, hoping for better days to come is not the true way to holiness, happiness or usefulness. It is better, no doubt, far better than being satisfied with poor attainments, but not the best way after all. I have been struck with a passage from a book... entitled Christ is All. It says, "The Lord Jesus received is holiness begun; the Lord Jesus cherished is holiness advancing; the Lord Jesus counted upon as never absent would be holiness complete... "He is most holy who has most of Christ within, and joys most fully in the finished work..." ... To let my loving Savior work in me His will, my sanctification, is what I would live for by His grace. Abiding, not striving nor struggling; looking off unto Him; trusting Him for present power... resting in the love of an almighty Savior, in the joy of a complete salvation, "from all sin" -- this is not new, and yet 'tis new to me... Christ literally all seems to me, now, the power, the only power for service, the only ground for unchanging joy... How then to have our faith increased? Only by thinking of all that Jesus is and all He is for us: His life, His death, His work, He Himself as revealed to us in the Word, to be the subject of our constant thoughts. Not a striving to have faith... but a looking off to the Faithful One seems all we need; a resting in the Loved One entirely, for time and eternity. ... I looked to Jesus, and when I saw -- oh, how joy flowed! It was resting in Jesus now, and letting Him do the work -- which makes all the difference. Whenever he spoke in meetings after that, a new power seemed to flow from him, and in the practical things of life a new peace possessed him. Troubles did not worry him as before. He cast everything on God in a new way, and gave more time to prayer. It was the exchanged life that had come to him -- the life that is indeed "No longer I"... It was a blessed reality "Christ liveth in me." And how great the difference! -- instead of bondage, liberty; instead of failure, quiet victories within; instead of fear and weakness, a restful sense of sufficiency in Another.”
You can read more here.
Our salvation comes from the Person of Jesus Christ alone. “Christ is All” is the banner of the believer. My prayer is that we take time to reflect on this important truth.
Hebrews 7: 27. Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself.
There is no other sacrifice to be or that is needed. It was done and finished at the crucifixion and we now have the Life of the resurrection.