Our Past, Present and Future in Christ
3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. (Colossians 3:3-4)
Closing this introductory section about how believers are to live their lives with Christ as their foundation, Paul states in verse 3, “For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” Paul reminds the believers that they have died to their old life full of sin. Paul stated this emphatically in Romans 6:1-2, “What should we say then? Should we continue in sin so that grace may multiply? 2 Absolutely not! How can we who died to sin still live in it?” After being saved by grace through faith, believers are not to return to their old lives for it has “died.” On the positive end, their salvation is “hidden,” meaning secured and can never be taken away or lost. And most importantly, it is kept by Jesus Christ in God as seen in John 10:28-29, “I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.”
Then, in verse 4, after showing how believers used to be in the past, what their present circumstance is, Paul then shows what the future will be like. When Christ “appears,” meaning when He is openly displayed to the world as He returns again, all believers will “appear with Him in glory,” meaning that believers will be made perfect. And Paul takes the idea of identify with Christ further: Christ is the believer’s life. We can see this in Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” As Anders states, “He is the focus of our aspirations, the reason for our existence.”
Christ is supreme in the believer’s life, for through His death and resurrection on the cross, He has provided life and transformation to those that believe in Him, and they will experience future glorification when He returns again. Believers are to live boldly for Christ, identifying with Him, being filled with hope of the future to come.
Isaac De Guzman