Derek Prince - If You Think You Are Earning It, God Will Not Give It To You
This is an excerpt from: Complete Salvation And How To Receive It - Part 2
The second side of identification is we identify ourselves with Jesus. This we do by faith. We do it because the Bible says it's true. Here are the five steps of identification. First of all, we died with Him. That's a simple past tense. You remember I was speaking about them? It's an event that took place at a certain moment in time. In Colossians 3:3, Paul writing to Christians says: For you died They were still living on the earth but he said you died.
When did they die? When Jesus died on the cross. For you died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. And then in 2 Timothy 2:11, Paul brings out the implications. This is a faithful saying: for if we died with him, we shall also live with him So we're identified with Him in death. His death was our death. Then we are identified with Him in what followed death. What followed death? Burial, that's right. And this is very important. We must be identified with Him in burial. How are we identified with Him in burial, by what? Baptism, that's right. That's why baptism is so important. because the identification with His death is inward but the identification with Him in burial is outward, it's a visible identification with the Lord. And in countries where there is an anti Christian force, baptism is the decisive cut-off point both amongst Jews, Moslems and others.
You can say you believe in Jesus, they'll get angry. But when you're baptized all hell turns loose because that's where you escape from their territory. So we are identified with Him in burial by baptism. Let's look at two passages. Romans 6:4: Therefore, we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. So we are identified with Him in burial by baptism. Actually, every baptismal service should be a double service. It should be a burial followed by a resurrection, that's right. But only if we've been buried can we be resurrected. See?
And then in Colossians 2:12, Paul says the same thing again: Buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised [or resurrected] with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. So when we are buried with Him in baptism, then we have the right to follow Him in everything that followed His burial. And there are three more stages. They're all stated in Ephesians 2. Let me say there are other passages in the New Testament but we will just look at Ephesians 2:4-6. But God, who is rich in mercy, because of his great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses [notice we're dead], made us alive together with Christ, (by grace you have been saved;) raised us [or resurrected us] together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.
Notice the word together three times. We're made alive. Because, Jesus didn't come out of the tomb dead, He was alive before He came out of the tomb. We're made alive, we're resurrected, but we don't stop there. We're made to sit with Him in heavenly places. What is He sitting on in heaven? A throne, that's right. The New English Bible says we are enthroned with Him. So we're dead, buried, made alive, resurrected and enthroned. Suppose we, for a moment, use our fingers this way. Shall we do that? Dead with Him, buried with Him, made alive with Him, resurrected with Him, enthroned with Him. That's totally outside our power to achieve. It's obvious. There's no way we can work for it. There's no way we can be good enough for it. There's no way we deserve it. There's only one way we can receive it, by faith. It's solely by faith.
If we realize the scope of this salvation, it would be foolish, it would be ridiculous to try and earn it or to try to do something to deserve it. One problem with many professing Christians is they have an uneasy feeling they ought to do something to earn it. The result is they never really enjoy it because if you think you are earning it, God will not give it to you. Because, it would be on a false basis. That's why it's usually easier for the worst sinners to get saved than churchgoers. Have you ever noticed that? I was one of the worst sinners and I got saved about the same time as a man who was very religious but unsaved. I just plunged into everything, and began to swim, you know. I got baptized in the Spirit, began to receive gifts of the Spirit. He was months going through the same process because somewhere in the back of his mind he thought he had to be earning it.