Being filled with the fullness of Christ, as one blogger commented, begins with the new birth, a new life in Christ: “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever…That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit… the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you…”(1Pet. 1:23; John 3:6; John 14:17).
The world doesn’t know Him or have Him, but the born again do know Him and are filled with Him from the moment we receive Christ. It just takes a lifetime to grow in His fullness, appropriating it into our lives.
John the Baptist said it best when he said, “He must increase, but I must decrease.” John 3:30. As Christ’s life in us changes us from the corruptible to the incorruptible“…we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” 2Cor. 3:18. It happens one step at a time.
Over the next few days? I hope to dwell on the fullness of Christ lived out in His body, the church, believers born of the incorruptible seed of the Holy Spirit. The past few days the studies and sermons I’ve heard dealt with compassion and comfort. This is where I will start because I believe He is asking me to be filled up with these things, to grow to be more like Him in these areas. I invite you to share areas He is speaking to you.
“If therefore there is any encouragement in Christ…any affection and compassion… he, being full of compassion, forgave their iniquity, and destroyed them not: yea, many a time turned he his anger away, and did not stir up all his wrath.” (Phil. 2:1,NASB;Ps. 78:38).
“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus…be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.” (Phil. 2:5; 1Pet. 3:8,9)
“If therefore there is any encouragement in Christ…any affection and compassion… “He… will have compassion upon us…subdue our iniquities…cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.“ Micah 7:19.
“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus…”And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.” Eph. 4:32.
“If therefore there is any encouragement in Christ…any affection and compassion…Jesus…said, I have compassion on the multitude, because they continue with me now three days, and have nothing to eat: and I will not send them away fasting, lest they faint in the way.” Matt. 15:32.
“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus…But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?” 1John 3:17.
“If therefore there is any encouragement in Christ…any affection and compassion…they were as sheep not having a shepherd: And Jesus…saw much people, and was moved with compassion…and he began to teach them many things…The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few…” (Mark 6:34; Matt. 9:37).
“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus…”Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest…Follow me…Go ye therefore, and teach all nations…Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you…”(Matt. 9:37;John1:43b;Matt. 28:19,20).
Compassion comforts. Comfort brings hope.
“Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.” 2Cor. 1:3,4.
Father, as we have received may we give.