“… for without me ye can do nothing” (John 15:5).
The work of God in the new creation is legal and vital. Here is a simple illustration: imagine you just paid for a new house. After you’ve paid, it’d still take you a while to move in and settle in, but once you are handed the Certificate of ownership, it’s your house as a legal fact. However, if someone wanted to visit you today, you wouldn’t give the person the address to your new house, because even though it’s yours, you don’t live there yet.
Likewise, anyone who believes in Jesus is saved. The bible says that God, “Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, by grace ye are saved” (Ephesians 2:5). Yet, we are told that we ‘will’ be saved (Acts 15:11).
What do these things mean? The moment we believe, we are declared righteous. We are saved. However, that salvation will not be consummated until Christ returns for us and we receive new bodies in which we will live for eternity.
The point here is simply that, on one hand, our union with Christ is a reality. However, we must continue to ‘abide’ in Him. What is a legal fact must become a vital fact. A good example is in Paul’s letter to Colossae: “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:1-3).
Set your affections bearing in mind your position in Christ. Be conscious of your union. This is key to your fruitfulness.