When I was in junior high school, I played football on an organized team for the first time. And my size gave our team a distinct advantage. I was the smallest player on the field. I was so small, in fact, that when I had the ball, the opposing team had a difficult time tackling me because they could hardly see me.
In crucial situations when we had to have the yards, our go-to play was called “Refrigerator Right” (in honor of Chicago Bears defensive-lineman-turned-running-back, William “The Refrigerator” Perry). Coach Junior set Andrew, the biggest guy on our team, in front of me as a blocker, and the quarterback handed me the ball. With Andrew leading the way, one man made a way for another. I was completely obscured by his strength and powerful work, but running to freedom. Everything that was supposed to hit me hit Andrew. He blazed a path for me against hostile forces. He made a way to glory. I was hidden in him.
The Bible says that those who belong to Christ are so intertwined with his life that when he died, we died with him. “For you have died,” Paul wrote to his very living audience, “and your life is hidden with Christ in God” (Col. 3:3). Everything that was supposed to hit us, even the judgment of God for our sins, hit Jesus. He blazed a path against hostile forces, seen and unseen. He made a way to glory. One man made a way for all to live (1 Cor. 15:22). We are hidden in Christ. That’s one picture of union with Christ.
Rankin Wilbourne and John Ortberg, Union with Christ: The Way to Know and Enjoy God (Colorado Springs, CO: David C. Cook, 2016).
We have just released a new Bible Study based on the book: Union with Christ, by Rankin Wilbourne
These lessons are available on Amazon, as well as a part of my Good Questions Have Groups Talking Subscription Service. Like Netflix for Bible Lessons, one low subscription gives you access to all our lessons–thousands of them. For a medium-sized church, lessons are as little as $10 per teacher per year.
Union with Christ, Lesson #1
Living in the Gap
Union with Christ, Lesson #2
Union with Christ. What Is It?
Union with Christ, Lesson #3
Why We Need Two Songs Playing in Our Head
Union with Christ, Lesson #4
Chapters 4 – 6:
Union with Christ in the Bible
Union with Christ, Lesson #5
Chapters 7 – 8:
Who Am I? / Where Am I Headed?
Union with Christ, Lesson #6
Chapters 9 – 10
What Am I Hear For? / What Can I Hope For?
Union with Christ, Lesson #7
Chapters 11 – 15
Abiding in Christ
Each lesson consists of 20 or so ready-to-use questions that get groups talking. Answers are provided in the form of quotes from respected authors such as John Piper, Max Lucado and Beth Moore.
These lessons will save you time as well as provide deep insights from some of the great writers and thinkers from today and generations past. I also include quotes from the same commentaries that your pastor uses in sermon preparation.
Ultimately, the goal is to create conversations that change lives.