Greater is He That is in You

I John 4:4 You are of (ek = out of) God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.

Those to whom John is writing he calls “little children.” They are not little children naturally but little children in that they are born “out of” God and are growing spiritually. They are not yet spiritual adults but they are becoming. They are not babes in Christ because they have matured enough to have overcome the antichrist spirit. That means they have not been polluted by the spirit of the world.

Christ is in them, and their submission to His Lordship makes Him greater in them than he that is in the world. One should not assume that just because he is a Christian that the Christ in him is greater than the antichrist spirit of the world. That is determined by your submission to the Lordship of Jesus Christ and your rejection of your self-life. The Christ in some Christians is quite weak. If you are lacking in your submission to His Lordship, then His authority and strength in you is weak. Jesus speaks of this in the parable of the sheep and goats.

In this particular parable Jesus separates Christians into two groups called sheep and goats. The Christian’s ministry determined which group he was in. To the sheep-Christian Jesus said, “When I was hungry, you fed Me; when I was thirsty, you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and in prison and you visited Me” (Matthew 25:35-36). The goat-Christians didn’t minister to Christ in that way and that is why they were called goats. To understand this parable properly we must realize Christ was describing Himself as He is in some Christians. The Christ in some is hungry and needs to be fed the Word of life. The sheep-Christian fed the hungry Christ in his brothers and sisters. Some Christians were without the robes of righteousness – the Christ in them was naked. In some He was imprisoned and sick. The Christ in them was not greater than he that is in the world.

He that is in the world is already in you before you become a Christian, and becoming a Christian doesn’t automatically mean that He that is in you is greater than he that is in the world. You are the world and when Christ begins coming forth in you then the work begins of Him becoming greater than your world. This is what John the Baptist meant when he said, “He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30). Your submission to the Lordship of Jesus Christ determines whether He is greater in you than he that is in the world, not whether you are a Christian or not. The fact is, far too many Christians are influenced more by the antichrist spirit of the world than they are by the Lord Himself. These children John is writing to have overcome the spirit of the world.

Copyright © 2005 by Henry DuBose