In the prior post we took a look at the literary context and form of the creed found in 2 Timothy 2:11-13 evaluating Charles Stanley claim that this passage strongly supports the idea that enduring faith is not necessary for salvation.
Since the creed is considered older than the letter to Timothy I thought it would be interesting to see if the ideas in these statements were expressed in Jesus’ teachings.
If we died with him, we will also live with him.
This passage is primarily understood as referring to our being raised with Christ to new life because of our identification with Christ by faith. This draws from the same ideas expressed in Romans 6, particularly 6:5 and 6:8. These ideas are also found in Col 2:12-13.
Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him.
Paul, continues to explain that because we are identifying ourselves with Christ’s death we should live for Him (Rom 6:11-14; Col 2:20;3:1-6).
The idea of dying and giving up our worldly desires, kingdoms, and even life so that we might live as a disciple was expressed by Jesus (Matt 10:38-39; 16:24-25).
If anyone wants to become my follower, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake (dies for him) will find it (live for him).
If this teaching of Jesus is what the creed is trying to capture then those who identify with him (and find life) are contrasted with those who do not. This would give support to the third line of the creed referring to those who deny Christ as losing or being denied eternal life. Continue reading