You Are Christ's
James Smith, 1860
"You are Christ's" 1 Corinthians 3:23
Thus the apostle represented one of the greatest privileges of the Lord's people at Corinth, and thus he sought to silence their contentions, and heal their divisions. They were Christ's — gifted to him by his Father, purchased for himself hy his own most precious blood, and called to a knowledge of him, and an acquaintance with him, by the work of the Holy Spirit. What an honor — to be specially and peculiarly Christ's — to be claimed, acknowledged, and prized by him. Better to belong to Christ, however poor and despised — than to the mightiest monarch on earth, however honored!
WHO are those who belong to Christ? They are called saints, or holy people — because they are set apart for him, consecrated to him, and are made holy, that they may be like him. They call on his name, or worship him as the true God and eternal life. He is the object of their love and adoration. Or, they believe on his name, as sent of God, authorized by God, and set forth by God to save sinners, even the chief. They surrender at his call, hearing his voice, they obey it, and yield themselves to him. They submit to his will — in reference to salvation, and bow to be saved by grace, through faith. They submit to his will — in reference to obedience, and make his precepts the rule of their lives. All believers are Christ's, they may be weak in faith, and be compassed with infirmities; yet, as believers, as those who rely on his word, trust in his blood, and look for eternal life in his name — they are Christ's.
What are the PRIVILEGES of those that are Christ's? These are many and great, let us name a few. If we are Christ's — then his Father is our Father, and we share in all his love, care, and attention. His Spirit is our Comforter, and will lead, teach, and guide us. His righteousness is our righteousness, and in it we shall be justified, accepted, and saved. His atonement is ours, made for our sins, presented to our faith, and all its merit is placed to our account. His peace is ours, to keep our hearts and minds in troubles, trials and temptations; as he said, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you." His wealth is ours, even his unsearchable riches, for we are joint heirs with him, who is heir of all things!
O the dignity, the honor, the blessedness of being Christ's! If we are Christ's — then he will defend his property, and so we are safe. If we are Christ's — then he will support his children, and so we are supplied. If we are Christ's — then he will nourish and cherish his bride, and so we shall be comforted. Blessed Jesus, by the Spirit's witness in my heart, by your sweet presence in my soul, by your frequent visits and holy fellowship — assure me beyond a doubt, that I am yours!
What are the OBLIGATIONS of those who are Christ's? These are many and great. If we are Christ's — then we should attentively listen to his voice — whether he speaks to us by his providence, in his ordinances, or by his word. We should cheerfully obey his will — both in reference to moral duties, and religious institutions. We should refuse to hear anything against him, whether insinuated by Satan, unbelief, or erroneous men. We should always, and everywhere, own him as our Lord and Master. We should frequently visit him, and open our hearts to him, telling him all that pleases or pains us, all that agitates or animates us, all that gladdens or grieves us. We should live upon him, in hope of living forever with him; as soon should we seek or expect to live without bread, as to live without Christ. In a word, if we are Christ's, we should present to him our bodies, as a living sacrifice. We should consecrate to him our time and our talents — to be spent in his service. And whether we eat or drink, or whatever we do — we should do all as to him, and for his glory.
Reader, are you Christ's? Christ's — or Satan's, you must be, for between them, the whole earth is divided. Whom do you serve? Whose people do you prefer? Whose cause do you endeavor to advance? Be decided — let there be no doubt upon the point. If you profess to be Christ's, be so — thoroughly, entirely, altogether. Let everyone see that you belong to Christ, that he is your Master — as well as your Savior. Give him your best, devote yourself and all that you have to his glory. Live for him. Speak for him. Act for him. Let every day's conduct say, "I am the Lord's!" "I am Christ's!"
Can you wish to be considered Satan's? Can you desire to be allied to the prince of darkness? One would think it impossible — but if you do not give up yourself entirely to Christ — you do, you must! Let it then be seen that Satan is your Master, and that you prefer him, and his service — to the Lord Jesus, and his.
Do not halt between two opinions, if you are Christ's — serve him. You cannot serve both God and Mammon. You cannot be Christ's — and Satan's; it must be one or the other. Let us then be decidedly, devotedly, and altogether the Lord's; so shall we enjoy all the privileges of his people, carry out all the precepts of his word, and acknowledge all the obligations that we are under to him. Yes, Lord Jesus, we will be yours — yours entirely — your eternally! Yours to love you — yours to serve you — yours to live with you forever! O my soul, rejoice in your privilege, glory in the precious thought, "I am Christ's!"