In this chapter of "The Believer's Secret of Living Like Christ" by Andrew Murray, we see how our life in Christ is to be like His was through the Father. We are to follow this example and to be this example to others by the grace and power that He has given us through Christ.
"In His Life Through the Father"
"As.....I live by the Father: so he that eateth me,
even he shall live by me."
Every contemplation of a walk in the footsteps of Christ reveals the need of fixing our attention on the deep living union between the forerunner and His followers. Like Christ: the longer we meditate on it, the more we realize how impossible it is without the other: In Christ. The outward likeness can only be the manifestation of a living inward union. To do the same works as Christ, I must have the same life. The more I take Him for my example, the more I am driven to Him as my head. Only an inner life essentially like His can lead to a visible walk like His.
What an assuring word we have here: "As I live by the Father, so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me." If you desire to understand your life in Christ, what He will be for you and how He will work in you, you have only to contemplate what the Father was for Him and how He worked in Him. Christ's life in and through the Father is the image of what your life in and through the Son may be.
As Christ's life was a life hidden in God in heaven, so must ours be. When He emptied himself of His divine glory, He laid aside the free use of His divine attributes. He came as a man to live by faith; He needed to wait on the Father for wisdom and power as it pleased the Father to impart to Him. He was entirely dependent on the Father; His life was hid in God. Not in virtue of His own independent Godhead, but through the operations of the Holy Spirit, He spoke and acted as the Father.
In the same manner, your life must be hid with Christ in God. Let this encourage you. Christ calls you to a life of faith and dependence, because it is the life He himself led. He has proven its blessedness; He is willing to live His life in you, to teach you also to live in no other way. He knew that the Father was His life, that He lived through the Father, and that the Father supplied His need moment by moment. He assures you that as He lived through the Father, even so you shall live through Him. Take this assurance in faith., Let your heart be filled with the thought of the fullness of life prepared for you in Christ and the abundant supply for all you need. Do not worry over your spiritual life as something you must maintain. Rejoice that you live in the strength of the Lord Jesus, even as He lived through His Father.
As Christ's life was a life of divine power, although a life of dependence, so ours will also be. He never repented having laid aside His glory to live before God as a man upon earth. The Father never disappointed His confidence; He gave Him all He needed to accomplish His work. Christ experienced the full blessing of living as a man in entire dependence upon His Father, receiving everything day by day from His hands.
Believer, your life can be the same. The divine power of the Lord Jesus will work in and through us. Do not think that your earthly circumstances make a holy life impossible. Jesus manifested the divine life in the midst of earthly surroundings, which were supremely difficult. As He lived through the Father, so may you live through Him. Only cultivate greater expectations of what the Lord will do for you. Let it be your sole desire to attain to an entire union with Him. It is impossible to say what the Lord Jesus would do for a soul who is truly willing to live as entirely through Him as He through the Father. As the Father worked so gloriously in Christ, so has He undertaken to work all in you.
As the life of Christ was the manifestation of His union with the Father, so ours also. Christ says, "Even as the Father has sent me, and I live by the Father." When the Father desires manifest himself on earth in His love, He could entrust that work to only His beloved Son, who was one with Him: it was because the Father had sent Him that He must care for the Son's life. In this union rested the certainty that Jesus would live on earth through the Father.
"Even so," Christ said, "he that eateth me, liveth by me." He had said before, "He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood dwelleth in me, and I in him." In death He had given His flesh and blood for the life of the world; through faith the soul partakes of the power of His death and resurrection, and receives its right to His life. In the words "whosoever eateth me" is expressed the intimate union and unbroken communion with the Lord Jesus, which is the power of a life in Him. The one great work for the soul, who desires to live entirely by Christ, is to eat Him, daily to feed on Him, to make Him his own.
To attain this, seek continually to have your heart filled with a believing assurance that all Christ's fullness of life is truly yours. Rejoice in the contemplation of His humanity in heaven, and the wonderful provision God has made through the Holy Spirit for the communication of this life to flow unbroken and unhindered down upon you. Thank God unceasingly for the redemption in which He opened the way to the life of God, and for the wonderful life now provided for you in the Son. Offer yourself unreservedly to Him with an open heart and consecrated life that seeks His service alone. In such trust and consecration of faith, with His words abiding in you, let Jesus be your daily food. He who eateth me shall live by me: even as the Father has sent me, and I live by the Father.
Does likeness to Christ begin to seem possible in the light of this promise? He who lives through Christ can also live like Him. Therefore let the wonderful life of Christ on earth be the object of your adoring contemplation until your whole heart understands and accepts the word, "Even so, he who eateth me shall live through me." The same Christ who set us the example works in us from heaven that life which can live out the example. Our life will become a continual song: To Him who lives in us, in order that we may live like Him, be the love and praise of our hearts. Amen
O my God, how shall I thank You for this wonderful grace! Your Son became man to teach us the blessedness of a life of dependence on the Father; He lived through the Father. We see in Him how the divine life can live and work and conquer on earth. And now He is ascended into heaven and has all power to let that life work in us. We are called to live even as He did on earth: we live through Him. O God, praise to Your name for this unspeakable grace!
Lord, hear the prayer that I now offer to You. Show me more of Christ's life through the Father. I need to understand if I am to live as He did! Then I shall know what I may expect from Him, what I can do through Him. It will no longer be a struggle and an effort to live according to Your will. I shall know that His blessed life on earth is mine, according to the word, "Even as I through the Father, so ye through me." Then I will daily feed upon Christ in the joyful experience that I live through Him. O Father, grant this in full measure for His name's sake! Amen