In His Sight
The Terms of Our Position in Christ
1. Defined: set apart; saints.
a. This is the same term as Paul used to describe the Colossian believers in the opening of the letter (Col. 1:2).
b. Believers are set apart FROM sin and defilement and set apart UNTO the Lord.
2. The Church is holy… set apart unto God… each and every member of the Body.
a. Eph. 2:21-22 – the Body of Christ is a building that is growing into a holy Temple for the Lord… His habitation.
b. I Cor. 3:17 – the church is a HOLY temple…and WE as believers are that Temple.
c. I Cor. 1:2 – the Corinthians were saints… and sanctified. The moment they were saved, they were set apart into a new position: saints of God!
d. I Cor. 6:11 – they were justified and all condemnation was removed forever. They were washed, cleansed, purified, and sanctified once and for all. They are sanctified saints… positionally… although they were not behaving like saints!
e. If you are born again, you are part of the church. You too are holy… part of the holy Temple of God… separated from sin and the world UNTO Christ.
f. EVERY true believer is sanctified and thus holy positionally.
• We are not always holy in our daily lives… in our practical experiences…
• In our earthly condition we are often unholy!
• But that is not how God sees us. He sees us as holy… cleansed… washed… separated from the world and unto Christ.
• God sees us IN CHRIST… not in our sin. (Isn’t that great!?)
1. Defined: Strong’s: without blemish. as a sacrifice without spot or blemish morally: without blemish, faultless, unblameable; that which cannot be censured.
a. Heb 9:14; 1Peter 1:19 – used of Christ = without spot; without blemish.
2. Of course, this speaks of our position in Christ.
a. In Christ we are without spot and without blemish…
b. In ourselves we are quite spotty… blemished all over…
c. We look okay from a distance or in the dark… when the closer the light of God’s Word gets to our hearts… the more blemishes and spots appear.
d. Of course on our own, there is nothing we can do about these spots and blemishes… our sins.
e. Jer. 13:23 – as a leopard cannot change his spots (it is his nature to have spots), so the sinner cannot change his nature either. We are spotted morally… and unable to cleanse away one spot… one sin.
f. But, the precious blood of Christ can wash away all stains and cleanse us from all unrighteousness… from all spots.
g. Religion tries to cover up its spots… or pretend they aren’t there… or makes a vain attempt to eradicate them. But it will NEVER work.
h. Nothing but the blood of Christ can wash away our sins.
3. The believer in Christ stands in a position as “without blemish” in God’s sight.
a. This is not our doing… but it is our privilege… our position.
b. It is because God does not see us in ourselves with all our spots and blemishes.
c. He sees us in Christ… the Holy One… the spotless Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.
d. Eph. 5:27 – God sees the church very differently than we do. He sees it as not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing… but holy and without blemish!
e. That’s how we OUGHT to view one another… but we don’t.
• That is worldliness: viewing God’s work as the world does…
• It is viewing the believer IN CHRIST as if he were no different than anyone else… when God says he IS different!
• The world sees the believer’s spots… and assumes he is just like him.
• The worldly believer sees nothing but spots on his brethren too. (He sees spots in their language; in their clothing; in their manners; in their behavior; in the choices they make…)
• Some believers have eyes for spots and seem to see nothing else.
• God doesn’t look at His people like that. He sees us IN Christ… without spot and without blemish.
• As a Christian we should view one another as God sees us: without spot and blemish.
• That is taking the HEAVENLY perspective. That will transform our relationship to one another… in the home… in school… in the local church… wherever you see believers!
• That is not a worldly or earthly perspective, but a godly and a heavenly perspective.
f. Our position is that we are unblameable… (without spot or blemish) in God’s sight.
• Sight: “to look down in,” Wuest defines as “a searching, penetrating gaze”.
• We all stand under God’s searching and penetrating gaze… and His estimate of believers is that we are holy, unblameable, and unreproveable.
• God isn’t blind; He’s gracious.
• God isn’t lenient; He spared not His own Son.
• God isn’t ignorant; He knows all about our spots, but chooses to remember our sins no more—because Christ has satisfied His wrath against sin forever.
• God sees us as in Christ… that’s what we are in His sight… robed in His righteousness… washed in His blood… and without spot.
• Unblameable – without spot is our position… and our position is unalterable. It is forever. Praise God!
• And even our failures do not change our position in Christ.
• We will continue to commit sins in this life and will need to confess our sins… but before God’s eternal throne—we stand unblameable!
1. Defined: that cannot be called into to account, unreproveable, unaccused
2. Rev.12:10 – Satan is the great accuser of the brethren.
a. He accuses us day and night before God’s throne.
b. And even though he is the father of all lies, he doesn’t have to lie about us before God’s throne. He knows that no lie would ever stand there!
c. He simply tells the TRUTH about us… about our sin… our attitudes… our pride… our greed… lust… anger… worldliness… impurity…
d. He has plenty of material to work with in each of us. He doesn’t HAVE to make things up.
3. However, there is no charge that can ever STICK to us as believers.
a. Rom. 8:33 – who can lay anything to our charge? God has justified us. No one can trump His judgment!
b. Rom. 8:31 – if God be for us, who can be against us?
c. Rom. 8:1 – There is therefore now no condemnation to those that are in Christ Jesus. Nobody can level a charge against a believer that could result in condemnation…
D. In the Body of his Flesh Through Death
1. It is the shed blood of Christ on Calvary that results in these glorious changes for the believer.
2. I John 2:1-2 – we have an Advocate (a defense attorney)…
a. He is also the propitiation for all of our sins. His sacrifice eternally satisfied the Father.
b. Whatever accusation comes against us… Christ says, “I paid for that sin. It is forgiven. He is sanctified forever.”
c. Christ work on the cross as our Propitiation means that we are unreproveable!
3. Heb. 10:10 – sanctified (made holy positionally) through the offering of the body of Christ.
a. We are completely and eternally separated unto God!
b. Vs. 14 – them that are sanctified never need to be sanctified in this sense again.
c. Every believer of this age has been set apart unto God once and for all the moment of saving faith. (Separated from being in Adam to being In Christ; from the world and into the Body.)
d. Our POSITION is that we are set apart… we are holy… sanctified!
e. Positionally, the work of sanctification is finished… we are forever separated unto Christ.
f. We have been sanctified and now stand as saints… our position is perfect, finished, and unchangeable.
g. The blood has the power to sanctify and cleanse us not just from this sin or that… but it has the power to cleanse us from ALL sin past, present, and future… once and for all and forever!
h. Christ’s finished work on the cross means that we are sanctified once and for all and forever… saints… holy in God’s sight.
4. Col. 1:22 – in the body of His flesh through death, Christ reconciled us to God that we might be presented as HOLY before God… because we ARE holy!
a. The blood of Christ is SO POWERFUL that it is able to transform sinners into saints!
b. The cross changes the believing sinner forever… he is reconciled to God… changed from being an enemy to a friend of God… not because of some great work he did, but because of the cross… which satisfied the Father’s justice.
c. The blood of the cross is so powerful that it can change a condemned man into a justified man…
d. The power of the cross is seen in this section in that it was able to reconcile ALL THINGS in the created universe back into a harmonious relationship with the Creator. But the REAL power of the cross is seen in reconciling guilty, blameworthy sinners… and making them holy… and without blame!
e. The death of Christ was SO EFFECTIVE in dealing with our sin that even God Himself can find no flaw in us!
f. He Himself looked at us in Christ and made this conclusion about us: holy, unblameable and unreproveable in His sight!
g. These are not the words or wishful thinking of some dreamy eyed religious commentator. This is God’s estimation of us! There is no arguing with that.
h. Now try to make this PERSONAL… for in fact, it IS personal if you are genuinely saved.
• This is not just how God sees the church… it is how He sees YOU… and me… If this sinks in, it is quite liberating.
• In fact, it is the basis… the beginning of a genuine walk with God.
• There can never be a close relationship to Christ until we see ourselves as having been cleansed and blameless in God’s sight… a guilty conscience will PREVENT us from entering into the holy place of communion with God.
• But a CLEANSED conscience… one that knows and believes that the blood has the power to cleanse us from ALL sin… that conscience is free to enter into the holy of holies with God.
• And the conscience will never experience the rest and purging power of the blood until we genuinely BELIEVE these truths concerning ourselves. Yes YOU are holy, blameless, and unreproveable in God’s sight… if you’re saved.
Past Election (Eph. 1:4)
1. God’s Choice.
a. Chose: elect; select; to pick out, choose, to pick or choose out for one’s self.
b. Paul had been speaking about our spiritual blessings in Christ. Now he tells us that they are all based upon God’s choice. He chose to bless us. Period.
c. God chose us IN Christ.
d. He did not choose us because of anything He saw in us… there was no good thing in us.
e. But He chose us in Christ… in His Beloved.
f. We are chosen in Christ and accepted in Him. (Eph. 1:6)
g. We are never told WHY He chose us… except that it was His good pleasure to do so… (vs. 5c)
h. Eph. 1:7 – It is all according to the riches of His grace… God’s goodness to undeserving sinners.
2. The Terms
a. Without blame = same word as unblameable in Col. 1:22
b. Holy = same word as holy in Col. 1:22
3. The Purpose of Election: that we should be holy and without blame before Him.
a. Apart from God’s elective choice, NO ONE would ever be holy or without blame before Him. We are all sinners… without exception.
b. But God DETERMINED in eternity past that SOME WOULD in fact stand before Him holy and without blame.
c. He chose some to that privileged position… He chose on the basis of pure grace…
d. I Cor. 1:8 – And God is also determined to see to it that His purpose is carried out.
e. One day we WILL stand before God holy and without blame!
f. This is due to the fact that God CHOSE us to this position in Christ before the foundation of the world.
g. To God be the glory… great things He hath done. Salvation is of the Lord—from start to finish.
h. Salvation begins with God. He chose us. Jesus said, “Ye have not chosen Me but I have chosen you.” (John 15:16)
i. Before the foundation of the earth, God chose you to salvation… He chose you to be saved… and to be holy and without blame before Him.
j. This is not a truth that we will ever fully grasp or fully understand all of its nuances and subtleties; but it IS a truth that we are to believe…
k. It is not a truth that we are to stumble over… or lose our focus over. But it is a truth that we are to enjoy… and for which we should be eternally grateful!
l. II Tim. 1:9 – God had a purpose in grace which was given us IN CHRIST before the world began.
• God’s purpose was to manifest HIS marvelous grace in undeserving sinners like us…
• God’s purpose was to save some… reconcile some back to Himself… and thereby manifest His marvelous grace for all eternity!
• To do that, God determined to make some holy and without blame before Him.
• I don’t understand it all… but I am grateful… I am thankful that God chose this sinner and decided to demonstrate His grace in me!
• Eph. 2:7 – that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of HIS grace in HIS kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
• This was God’s plan in eternity past. He is carrying out that plan today.
1. Present: We will be PRESENTED as holy, unblameable, and unreproveable.
a. Present Defined: to place beside or near; to place a person or thing at one’s disposal.
• Acts 27:24 – Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar:
• Rom. 6:13 – yield your members to God…
• Rom. 12:1 – present your body a living sacrifice to God…
• II Cor. 11:2 – that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ…
2. Col. 1:22: This seems to refer not to the judicial position of the Colossian believers, but rather, to a future eschatological time when they stand before Christ after the Bema… holy, unblameable, and unreproveable.
3. Jude 24 – faultless = same word as unblameable in Col. 1:22 – without blemish…
a. Christ will present believers to the Father one day… faultless and unblameable!
b. Note also that Jude is speaking about the awful days of apostasy… like the ones in which we live!
c. He states that regardless of how bad things get around us—morally and spiritually—we need not fear. God is able to keep us from falling… into that apostasy!
d. We needn’t be paralyzed by fear of the deplorable spiritual conditions around us. We can keep on walking by faith… trusting that God will keep us from falling into it… and that He will present us before the throne of God as FAULTLESS!
e. And not only that, but He is also going to present us faultless before the presence of His glory!
• Col. 1:22 says that we are blameless in His sight.
• Jude says that we will be presented faultless before the dazzling glory of God’s presence!
• The entire Old Testament system taught that NO MAN can approach a holy God. He dwells in a light which no man can approach… His glory is unapproachable.
• Yet one day WE will be presented before that glory… and will stand there faultless!
• At the Second Coming, unbelievers will receive everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power.
• The presence of His glory is our delight in that day! We stand before it faultless!
• And with JOY!
f. God is ABLE to present us faultless! Do you believe it?
4. I Cor. 1:8 – we will be confirmed to the end and assured of being presented as blameless in the day of the Lord Jesus…
5. Eph. 5:27 = without blemish = same word as unblameable in Col. 1:22
a. The church will one day be presented to Christ as a GLORIOUS church… without spot or wrinkle… robed in pure white!
b. Vs. 25c = He GAVE Himself for the church… that He might present it to Himself a GLORIOUS church…
c. Christ died for the church; sanctifies the church; washes it in His blood and His Word… and then presents it to Himself!
d. At this point, the church will already have appeared before the Bema seat…
• All works done in the power of the flesh will be burned up… as wood, hay, and stubble.
• All works done in the power of the Spirit of God for the glory of God will be rewarded.
• We will be crowned and robed in fine linen, clean and white… prepared as a bride for the bridegroom… for the marriage of the Lamb… when we are united together with Christ forever… in unbroken fellowship!
e. “Holy and without blemish” = same words as appear in Eph. 1:4, God’s purpose for election… and in Col. 1:22.
• That which God determined to transpire before the foundation of the world WILL transpire… exactly as the Lord planned.
1. In the past, God CHOSE us to be holy and without blame. One day in the future, God will PRESENT us as holy and without blame before Christ.
a. In the meantime, this is our POSITION in Christ.
b. We are holy… sanctified… saints…
c. We are blameless… and unreproveable… all of our sins have been paid for by Christ.
d. He is now in the presence of God FOR US. His shed blood has eternally satisfied the Father. No charge can be leveled against us. There is no condemnation.
e. In Christ, we are pure… robed in His righteousness… justified… cleansed… washed… reconciled… accepted… forgiven… forever! That is our position.
2. God’s eternal plan for us… and our settled position in that plan ought to have an effect on our present lives.
a. We are to DWELL upon our heavenly position.
b. We are to REST in our unalterable position in Christ.
c. We are to let these truths settle down and be at home in our hearts.
d. And as we do, our position in Christ (holy; unblameable) will have an effect on the way we live today.
3. Col. 3:12 – because we are holy, we are to “put on” that which ought to accompany holiness.
a. I Pet. 1:16 – “Be ye holy for I am holy.” We are holy positionally.
b. Hence, we ought to be holy NOW in a practical sense too.
4. Phil. 2:15 – We are blameless before God’s bar of justice. Hence, God wants us to be blameless NOW… as we live before the world. Our present condition should be LIKE our position.
a. II Pet. 3:14 – be found without spot and blameless (same root to unblameable). This is all based on the glorious future God has assured to us.
5. Jas. 1:27 – keep yourselves unspotted… The church is without spot or blemish… yet we live in a filthy world, and are exhorted to keep ourselves unspotted.
6. Our glorious position is IN CHRIST… and thus holy and unblameable.
a. As we rest… abide in Him… HE will transform our daily condition.
b. Our responsibility is to REST… in our holy position in Him… and as we BEHOLD the glory of God in Christ… we will be transformed into that same image by the Spirit.
c. As the branch abides in the Vine (our position in Christ), that branch will grow… and become fruitful.
d. The more we are occupied with Christ… and the less we are occupied with self… the more like Him we become…
e. The closer our condition comes to our position. This is spiritual growth, maturity, and progress.
f. Contemplating God’s infinite, marvelous grace in our lives… the eternal and unchangeable position we have in Christ… will have a life transforming effect on each of us. Dwell on this wonderful position… rest in it… revel in it… and see what God will do in your daily life.