In these bulletin articles, we’ve been going through a list of questions and answers contained in the Westminster Larger Catechism, published in the 17th Century. We’ve previously learnt that a Christian cannot fall away from faith because of the love of God and the promises of God. Why else does a Christian continue to believe?
One of the incredible truths of Christianity is that Christians are united with Christ.
For example, Jesus prays that Christians may be ‘in him’: ‘I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me’ (John 17:20-21).
The Bible also teaches that Christ is living in Christians. Paul says: ‘I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me’ (Galatians 2:20).
A powerful passage on the Christian’s union with Christ is found in Colossians. Paul writes: ‘24 Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church. 25 I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness– 26 the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints. 27 To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. 28 We proclaim him, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone perfect in Christ. 29 To this end I labor, struggling with all his energy, which so powerfully works in me’ (Colossians 1:24-29). Notice what is said here about the union of Christ:
- Christ’s body is the church;
- The mystery of God is Christ in the Gentiles;
- Christians are taught so they may be perfect in Christ;
- Christ powerfully works in Paul.
Moreover, Christ himself makes some marvelous promises to his disciples. He says: ‘For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them’ (Matthew 18:20). And before Christ leaves this earth bodily, he says to his disciples: ‘18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age”’ (Matthew 28:18-20).
So can Christians fall away and stop being Christians?
Of course not. They are in Christ, Christ is in them, and Christ promises to be with them – always!
So do you have fellowship with Christ through faith? Do you know that means you will persevere in him forever?