Raised with Christ
Every Sunday, Christians assemble to remember Jesus’ death and resurrection. His death was our atonement for sin, and His resurrection is our assurance that the Father accepted that atonement.
Jesus’ death and resurrection were essential to our salvation, but so is our corresponding death and resurrection in a spiritual sense. The Bible says we are raised with Christ. . .
“Having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead” (Colossians 2:12). The same divine power that raised Jesus is what provides new life for us. Receiving that power is conditioned on faith, trusting God to do what He promised and trusting the means He provided: Jesus’ atoning death.
The same verse that says we are raised through faith says we are raised in baptism! Romans 6:3 says we are baptized into Jesus’ death, and Colossians 2:12 says we are raised with Him in baptism. Why, then, do so many insist that faith is essential but baptism is not? Jesus said, “He who believes and is baptized will be saved” (Mark 16:16).
To an Exalted Position
God “raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Ephesus 2:6). God did merely raise Jesus from the dead; He exalted Him to the highest position (1:20-23). He does that for us, too. In a sense we already share in Jesus’ heavenly glory: “our citizenship is in heaven” (Philippians 3:20).
To a New Life
“Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life” (Romans 6:3). Sin results in death, separation from God. God graciously forgives us in Christ and makes us alive again. The point of this verse, in its context, is that we must abandon our sinful ways (v. 2), not unduly relying on God’s grace (v. 1).
Resulting in a New Focus
“Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth” (Colossians 3:1-2). A citizen of heaven needs to view life from a heavenly perspective. Our goals and priorities—and our corresponding choices and behavior—must reflect our new life in Christ.