“For you were bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.” 1st Corinthians 6:20
One thing that many Christians seem to forget is that they were bought with a price. Before we dwell further on some of the ramifications of what this means, let’s take a look at what the Bible tells us about that price.
“And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.” 1st John 2:2
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23
“But He was wounded for our transgressions; He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5
Let’s examine this biblical foundational truth that is so often neglected or rather taken lightly. In a modern day culture where biblical truths are hated and everything else is tolerated, it makes no difference how to approach this great truth. Those who hate God will still be dead in their sins. Having been bought with a price is contrary to the world’s philosophies of self.
“While they promise them liberty, they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by whom a person is overcome, by him also he is brought into bondage.” 2nd Peter 2:19
Imagine you owned a slave. You bought this man or woman at a certain price. Now whatever tasks that you had intended for this person to do, you would expect them to do it. Whether you had them working a ranch, maintaining an estate or doing a task in a business, you had bought them at a price and would expect them to fulfill there obligations to you. Likewise you must realize that you were bought with a price, Christ has purchased you.
“And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, behave yourselves throughout the time of your sojourning in fear; knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your vain way of life received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.” 1st Peter 1:17-19
“Were you called while a slave? Do not be concerned about it; but if you are able to be made free, rather use it. For he who is called in the Lord while a slave is the Lord’s freedman. Likewise he who is called while free is Christ’s slave. You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of men.” 1st Corinthians 7:21-23
Now part of the confusion comes with having so many people who call themselves christians, but are not Christians (Ro. 9:6). Christ is the one who will sort out this problem (Matt. 13:30). Assuming that this is addressing the later group, those who truly know the Lord, let’s continue.
“Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually.” 1st Corinthians 12:27
Somehow this should be well grasped by true Believers. If we humble ourselves and realize our ‘place’, we need to understand really how it is that we really fulfill what Christ has spoken. When we realize that we were bought with a price and can truly grasp and understand that concept, then we also realize that our all is to be for Him. We are not bought by earthly masters, but rather by God, through Jesus Christ.
“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your anxiety upon Him, because He cares about you.” 1st Peter 5:6-7
“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20
“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, You will not despise.” Psalms 51:17
“And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. This is the first commandment. And the second, like it, is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:30-31
A lot of this unfaithfulness, in regards to leading lives that are holy and truly living for the Lord, is an individual heart issue. Just simply stating some words and assuming that the concept of truly living for the Lord will suddenly ‘click’ is not a wise one. Rather God speaks to each Believer’s heart individually.
We, as Believers are supposed to keep ourselves unspotted in this world. We as Believers have Christ who will forgive us, when we do sin.
“Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.” Jacob (James) 1:27
“Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also become holy in all conduct, because it is written, Be holy, because I am holy. And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, behave yourselves throughout the time of your sojourning in fear; knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your vain way of life received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you who through Him believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope might be in God.” 1st Peter 1:13-21
“This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from every sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us.” 1st John 1:5:10
Somehow the vast majority of churches do not emphasize what it is to be a true Christian. While it is know that a majority of churches are either false (Roman Catholic, Jehovah Witnesses, Mormon, etc.), another large portion are apostate (2 Tim. 3:1-5). While the body of Believers in a church are certainly at different levels of individual growth, we must look towards the pastors, deacons and mature Christians inside many churches and ask the question as to why oftentimes the individuals who proclaim to be Born Again Believers do not seem to bear fruit, as well as those who are, simply barely trudge along.
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many entering in through it. Because narrow is the gate and distressing is the way which leads unto life, and there are few who find it. Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them from their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree produces excellent fruit, but a corrupt tree produces evil fruit. A good tree is not able to produce evil fruit, nor is a corrupt tree able to produce excellent fruit. Every tree that does not produce excellent fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore from their fruits you will know them. Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of Heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in Heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many works of power in Your name? And then I will declare to them, I never knew you; depart from Me, you who work out lawlessness! Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock; and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be likened to a foolish man who built his house on the sand; and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat upon that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.” Matthew 7:13-27
This world is absolutely full of things that can distract Christians, we must keep focused and realize that everyone who has repented and by faith believed into the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior, have been bought with a price. There are distractions in entertainment, the vast majority of which a Christian would be wise to simply stay away from. There are distractions with economic issues in many Believer’s homes. There are distractions that come from the sinful world in which we live, which can often cause chaotic relationships with those who we are close to. Even amongst all of these distractions that will always be found in the world, we need to separate ourselves unto Christ.
“Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? And what agreement has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people. Therefore, Come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you. And I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” 2nd Corinthians 6:14-18
“Therefore, since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has been released from sin, that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh in the lusts of men, but in the will of God. For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in licentiousness, lusts, drunkenness, carousing, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries. In this regard, they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same overflow of dissipation, blaspheming. They will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.” 1st Peter 4:1-5
So let us consider these things. Not necessarily always true, depends I suppose on one’s circumstances, family, friends, work environment, etc., but I’ve said before that if everyone seems to like you, is it because you are compromising in your behavior?
“If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the Word that I said to you, A servant is not greater than his master. If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My Word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you on account of My name, because they do not know Him who sent Me.” John 15:18-21
They should find it strange when you don’t laugh and participate in their dirty jokes at work. They should find it strange when they ask if you have seen the latest hellywood garbage film and you state you hadn’t. They should find it strange when you don’t know the name of a popular music celebrity. They should find it strange, because you are a stranger to the world now, you have been bought with a price.
“Brethren, I do not count myself to have laid hold; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and stretching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Therefore let us, as many as are complete, be of this mind; and if in anything you think differently, God will reveal even this to you. Nevertheless, to the degree that we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us be of the same mind. Brethren, join in being imitators of me, and note those who so walk, as you have us for a pattern. For many conduct themselves, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ: whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, and who glory in their shame; who set their mind on earthly things. For our citizenship is in Heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subject all things to Himself.” Philippians 3:13-21
We are indeed strangers in this world. We are changed, no longer does sin reign in our bodies, because we were bought with a price.
“Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under Law but under grace. What then? Shall we sin because we are not under Law but under grace? Let it not be! Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered to you. And having been set free from sin, you became slaves to righteousness. I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves to uncleanness, and to iniquity unto iniquity, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness unto sanctification. For when you were slaves to sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. What fruit did you have then in the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves to God, you have your fruit unto sanctification, and the end, eternal life.” Romans 6:12-22
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” 2nd Corinthians 5:17
Let us remember these things and live accordingly, knowing that we are to live holy lives before our Creator. Remember that we are His witnesses and the world is watching. Remember to bear fruit and to follow in the examples of Christ. Remember that if you are a Christian, you were bought with a price.