Scripture is full of diametrically opposing statements: in giving, we receive; being last makes us first; we exchange mourning for dancing; and in dying, we live. These are the mysteries of God that are difficult to grasp but which simply must be believed in faith. It is the same with the crucifying of our flesh nature. If we crucify that it, kill our flesh and become as dead men walking, Jesus fills us with His life and nature. We may not understand it…it just is. “I am crucified with Christ nevertheless I live.”

The term I am in the Greek is a tense that emphasizes both a past act and it’s continual effect. Our “death” brings about continual life…not the same old life but an entirely new one in Christ. It’s a life full and abundant…one of power and peace.

In his first letter to the Corinthian church, Paul affirms this very thing.

I affirm, by the boasting in you which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily. (1 Cor.15:31)

Paul declared this with a sweet humility. Day after day we are to lay down our lives and literally pick up His. In doing so we give ourselves the great opportunity to be filled with all the life-giving principles and powers of Christ…to walk as He walked…to love as He loves…to touch lives as He touched lives. (See WORD WISDOM for a deeper study of humility)

Laying down our lives and walking as the living dead (alive in Christ) not only benefits those whose lives we touch, but ourselves as well. When we crucify our flesh, we are no longer slaves to sin.

Knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. (Rom.6:6)

If we walk in the resurrection power of Jesus’ life we are given that very same power of His resurrection, that is, experiencing the power of our risen Lord! (Phil.3:10) When we “lose our life” we find a new and better one.

For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. (Matt.16:25)

A crucified life is a selfless life. A crucified life is a giving life. A crucified life is an others-first life. A crucified life is a Christ life. He is the source of all life and the life He has given us we attain by faith. We are dead men walking with a living faith…alive in Christ. Hear these verses fresh and new…

Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. (Jn.15:13) 

By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. (1 Jn.3:16)

There is no greater expression of love than the giving of our life for someone else. It is not merely giving our physical life, but giving up our wants, our wills, and our desires for the sake of someone else. Jesus did…so should we.