I remember back to when I got saved. My life was absolutely by far the worst you could ever imagine. Honestly, it’s as if any real resemblance of life had escaped, leaving me just existing in a vast wasteland of emptiness. Actually, this was the state of my being for several years leading up to my incarceration. I had no sense of meaning or purpose. In my mind I had no real reason for living, and if you’re not living, you’re dying.
This was all born out of the circumstances of my life, which I had let get the better of me. Being separated from my wife, distanced from children, loss of job, shunned by family, and sadly enough, right or wrong, of my own doing. This was all fueled by a ferocious appetite for drugs and alcohol that wound up being my constant companions, in which I took refuge to escape the harsh reality I created. Being in this state of deep and dark misery and despair, my life was over and I was literally dying daily.
Thank God this all changed when I heard and believed the good news that said God loved me unconditionally, and that very love sent Jesus into the world to die for all my failures. He forgave me and made me His son all because I believed that Jesus died for my sins, and rose from the grave. Now I have my identity in Him. I have meaning, purpose, value, and a thriving desire to live the new life God has given me in Christ. So yes, it’s true – I now have life and I have it more abundantly. I’m finally living and loving life to the fullest in peace with God and myself.
However, I heard it said to the born again Christian that you must die daily. All I could think about was the despair and misery I was formerly in apart from God. I was dying daily before I was saved. Now being a new person in Christ, I’m told that I still need to die daily. It didn’t make sense to me, but at least I had to admit that the Bible did say “I die daily” (1 Cor. 15:31). I just knew from deep within something was wrong with this. I didn’t want to die to myself anymore. I wanted to live. You see after much study and prayer I had discovered who I really was in Christ. I’m a son of God and a possessor of his very own life – eternal life, being holy, righteous, a sanctified new creation in Christ. I thought that I never want to die to that because this is who God had made me to be in Christ. The old person I used to be has already been crucified with Christ once and for all (Gal. 2:20).
We need to take “I die daily” and all of scripture in its context. The context of the chapter is resurrection from the dead. In the previous verse, Paul is saying why do we run the risk of being in danger of even dying if there’s no resurrection? The following verse strengthens his point by saying: would I really be doing this if there’s no resurrection of the dead? In 2 Cor. 11:23-28 he says I’m in death often (in jeopardy of dying), whipped above measure, beaten with rods, stoned, etc., etc. All this for preaching the Gospel.
My beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ, we have already passed from death to life (John 5:24). When Christ who is our life appears, we will appear with Him (Col. 3:4). In Him we live, move, and have our being (Acts 17:28). God our Father has quickened us together with Christ. We are alive with Christ (Eph. 2:5). We now possess his quality of life, that is eternal life (Ro. 6:23). Live the life that God has given you to the fullest, and anything that even hints of death, reject boldly and quickly, because death is an enemy (1 Cor. 15:26). Death has been conquered by Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior once and for all. Now we are free to live, therefore live in Christ.
Be blessed in His love,
Chris Conchado, The L.A.M.B Squad (Leading All Men to Brotherhood) A ministry by inmates at SCI Dallas.
You may send your comments to Chris Conchado at the following address:
Smart Communications / PADOC
Christopher Conchado HY9349
PO Box 33028
St Petersburg FL 33733