This week we are enjoying the fact that Christ is God’s Beloved, His Favorite, and He is the One who is all and in all in God’s economy – so He replaces everything and everyone else with Himself! In God’s eyes, Christ is the best, and Christ is the One God wants – so all that God gives us is just Christ! Now, when most of us hear about “Christ replacing us“, we think that we are about to be finished, and Christ will come in to “totally replace us” or, in the words of many seeking ones, we have an “exchanged life”: Just like on the cross Christ was our substitute, dying in our place, so today He comes in and He gives His life to us in exchange for our life – especially since our life is so low, so pitiful, and we can’t do what He says in His Word. But the Bible shows us a different view of what it means that Christ replaces us, and so here is John 15:5 which says,
I am the vine; you are the branches. He who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit; for apart from Me you can do nothing.
What we see here is that, just as Paul later said, we who were once branches in the wild olive tree are now “grafted” in Christ – He is the vine, and we are the branches. The way He replaces us is just like the vine “replaces” the branch: by grafting a branch in the vine, the source of life and supply comes from the vine, so that the life of the vine is fully expressed through the branch! In this way, there’s an organic union that takes place between us and the Lord, and in this union we are being replaced! Here replacing denotes and implies an organic union, whereas exchanging annuls our union with Christ. What we see in the New Testament is that Christ’s replacing of us is altogether a matter of the grafted life – Christ is the vine, and we are the branches! When we first believed into the Lord, we were “cut off” from our old source, our old man, our old way of living, our own master – and we were grafted = organically united with / in Christ! Now daily as we abide in the Lord and we enjoy Him, spending time with Him and fellowshipping with Him, Christ is growing in us and He replaces us by living in us, with us, by us, and through us.
It’s not that “He lives, and we’re wiped out/obliterated“, or we’re like “robots” in His hands – NO! This is the enemy’s concept to keep us away from this wonderful life-long organic union with the Lord. We live, yet Christ lives in us(Gal. 2:20)! The branch lives, grows, bears fruit, is expressed, yet it is the vine who is expressed in the branch! And this vine, a type of Christ, is so rich! Just as we saw previously, the all-inclusive Christ, who transcends our comprehension and understanding, wants to become everything to us in a practical way! Our need is just to be infused, saturated, and permeatd with Him until in our experience daily Christ is everything to us: He’s our food, our drink, our feasts, our holy days, our Sabbath, our new moon, our transportation, the air that we breathe, our everything! As we enjoy Him daily, He practically becomes our everything little by little in our experience! In this way, Christ lives in us, with us, by us, and through us! [enjoyment from the Life-study of Isaiah and the life-study of Colossians, as quoted in the morning revival on the Crystallization-study of Isaiah(1)]
Lord, amen, keep us enjoying You daily! We want to be saturated, permeated, and soaked with this flowing divine life in the vine! Keep us abiding in You as the branches, that we may express You! Come in, Lord, fill us and replace us more today!