Copyright Rev. Stanley L. Derickson Ph.D. 1992



This study will be a bit abbreviated due to the depth to which we could take it. I will list topics, references and a few comments followed by some application. This section will cover standing, state, and then a comparison of the two.


"The two doctrines of Christian standing and daily life or state merge into one important truth, hence may be treated here together.

Standing, as distinguished from state or daily contact with Christ, is a reference to Christian position - the unchangeable and perfect work of God for the believer, while state refers to the changing and imperfect condition of his soul from moment to moment. Faith secures standing, but adherence to all the laws governing a spiritual life must secure daily benefits for the soul."

Dr. Chafer comments in closing, "All that enters into the believer's experience after he is saved - divine training and development - is to the end that he may be more conformed in his state to what he possesses in standing from the moment he is saved." (Chafer, Lewis Sperry; "SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY"; Dallas, TX: Dallas Seminary Press, 1947, Vol. VII, p 293)

We've all heard of the big muscle man fellow that can whip five guys at once in a fight. Now, imagine this man after he's had a few drinks. He begins bragging about his abilities and strengths. As he gets drunker and drunker he becomes weak - dizzy and disoriented. Finally as he's leaning against the wall for support, he is bragging about his ability to whip every one in the room.

His standing is that of a very strong man - he can beat several fellows at once. His state is - poor - sick - dizzy - unable to stand up - about to pass out.

Now, His state doesn't change what he really is, but it doesn't make him look like he has that standing.

Standing is the believer's place before God, provided by the work of the cross. State is the walk of the believer in this life.

STANDING: God has given us certain things, and they are ours no matter what we do in this life.

Rom. 5:1,2 "Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God." We stand in the grace of God almighty. Grace is all around us. To bad we don't act, and live like it!

I Cor. 15:1 "Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;" Our standing finds it's origin in the Gospel of Christ that we heard, and accepted at salvation.


In Christ: We are in Christ's body, the church (invisible). We are an integrated part of His organism, His body. (Rom. 8:1)

We are in Christ and as a result, there will be no condemnation. We stand before God as if already glorified.

Because we are in Christ, we have wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption (I Cor. 1:30). These things are done in God's mind but we have to wait for these things for a time - His time! He will bring these to pass in their completeness at His own time.

We are a new creature. Think back on your pre-salvation life. Remember what you were. Now, what are you at this point in time? There should be a change (II Cor. 5:17).

We will be changed physically at the rapture (I Cor. 15:51-57).

We have all spiritual blessings awaiting us. These too are partially unfulfilled to us, but not to God. The blessings we have today may have nothing to do with these promised blessings (Eph. 1:3).

With Christ: We are crucified with Christ. He lives in us. This is not obvious in our state, but it is true (Gal. 2:20). Can you fathom this doctrine? This doctrine of Christ living IN us! That is similar to me finding a slimy smelly garbage can to live in!

Our life is hidden with Christ in God. We are to seek things above (Col. 3:1-3).

We Sit in heavenly places: This is obviously still future. We see promise of our resurrection! (Eph. 2:6)

THE FACT OF STANDING: Many things are done and are ours through our standing.

1. The believer is redeemed: Eph. 1:7; I Cor. 1:30; Col. 1:30.

2. The believer is justified: Rom. 5:1; Rom. 4:25; Rom. 5:9; Rom. 3:19-28.

3. The believer is translated: Col. 1:12,13; Eph. 2:6.

4. The believer is sanctified: I Cor. 1:2.

5. The believer is in God's family: John 1:12.

6. The believer has an inheritance: Eph. 1:11.

7. The believer is sealed: Eph. 1:13.

8. The believer is glorified: Rom. 8:30


How do we use all of this information?

Let's recap.

We're part of Christ

No condemnation





New creation


Heavenly eternal dwelling





All of this is made possible by the blood of Jesus Christ. All of this plus more is tied up in the gift of God in Rom. 6:23. All of these are ours at the point of our salvation.

In light of what He has prepared for us, shouldn't we have a walk befitting our future position. This should be our example to prepare us for our future with God.

We truly are rich kids! We should act like it at our Fathers feet in our thanksgiving and praise.

When we really comprehend what we have in this standing we will.

Realize just how wonderful God is.

How blessed we are.

How much we owe God for sending Christ to die for our sins.

How much we owe Christ for dieing for us.

How really sinful we are when we place ourselves first.

How much God really loves us.

How we have nothing whatsoever to be proud of.

He has given us everything we have. As we really realize how worthless we are He will begin using us more and more.


God is full of decisions for us to make. First of all He tells us we are a sinful lot, and on our way to eternal Hell. We are worthless and worthy at the same time. We are worthless to Him, but we are worthy of His wrath and judgment because we are sinners.

Then He gives us a choice. He tells us that Christ died for our sins and that we can go to heaven. We now have a choice. HEAVEN OR HELL. What is that choice based on? A choice. A choice to accept Christ, or to reject Christ.

After we take the logical choice and accept Christ then we are told in Scripture that we are the children of God. We have many new gifts given to us. We have seen these in our study of standing. We are redeemed, justified, forgiven, glorified etc.

BUT We still have another choice to make. How are we going to live in the future? This leads us to state.

STATE: What, who and why we are in this life is our choice and this becomes the state in which we exist.

Phil. 2:19,20 "But I trust in the Lord Jesus to send Timotheus shortly unto you, that I also may be of good comfort, when I know your state. For I have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state." This pictures Paul's concern for how the believers were living.

I have a standing - I'm a son of God. I am His child as I stand before Him, however I am in a miserable state. I'm sinful at times. I'm rebellious at times. I'm lazy at times. Let's face it, I'm not much of a son at times! I'm not much in my state even though I am a son of Almighty God in my standing.


In the World: Phil. 2:15 We are to be blameless, harmless children of God without rebuke. We do these in a crooked and perverse nation to be shining lights.

Titus 2:12 We're to deny ungodliness, deny worldly lusts, live soberly, live righteously, and live Godly, IN THIS WORLD!

Walk in Him: Col. 2:6 The context shows that we should live a life centered in Christ.


1. The believer should walk by faith: II Cor. 5:7 This is fact - not a request or an option! We are to live by faith.

2. The believer should walk in love: Eph. 5:2 We should walk in love, or live our life and base it on love.

3. The believer should walk in light: I John 1:5-7 In short our walk should be centered in God. God is light and we are to walk in light. This means we should check with God about everything we do This means the buying of a house, of a car -- every area of life.

4. The believer should walk in newness of life: Rom. 6:4-11 We are to have a change of life. Instead of serving sin we can turn our backs on it and walk in our new life with God. This doesn't only mean the lying, drinking, covetousness, immorality etc. It includes the pride, the gossip, the self esteem and the self righteousness. ALL SIN!

5. The believer should walk in the Spirit: Gal. 5:16 What does it mean to walk in the Spirit? It means a life with Him in control.

How do we do this? By allowing Him to control our lives - every aspect of our lives. We need to constantly try to allow Him to exhibit His fruit in our lives. Gal. 5:22,23 Mention this fruit.

A spiritual king of the mountain contest. Who is it that will control your life - YOU, OR THE HOLY SPIRIT?

6. The believer should walk worthy of his vocation: Eph. 4:1-3 This includes: lowliness, meekness, long suffering, forbearing one another in love, and trying to keep the unity of the Spirit in a bond of peace.

7. The believer should walk circumspectly: Eph. 5:15 Walk as wise not as fools. Verse 16 "Redeeming the time, because the days are evil." In short if you use your time for Christ properly you are wise, but if you use your time improperly you are a fool. Our time on earth is for God's purposes, not our own! Are you wise or a fool?

8. The believer should walk in Christ: Col. 2:6 We've already looked at this one. It tells us to center our life in Christ - 3:1 tells us to set our aims on things above!

9. The believer should grow in grace: II Peter 3:18 Grow in grace. We, as sons of God, are sons because of God's grace. We then should grow, or mature as children grow - into adulthood. "Grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior...." Part of the maturing process seems to be from the Word of God.

Point of interest: Apostles, prophets evangelists and pastor teachers are for the educating of the saints. Now, What if a pastor, at the leading of God prepares lessons, or sermons that certain Christians really need, or maybe the Christian has told the pastor he needs it and that person doesn't show up for that lesson or series. I believe that person is responsible for the knowledge he missed if it was an unnecessary absence. We can't grow as Paul says, unless we are learning, be it at Church, or at home.


When the child of a very important person is seen, or read about most people are very alert to see if they are up to snuff.

When I was in high school everyone's eyes were upon the pastor's son. They wanted to see if the son reflected the father.

I was quite surprised at President Fords daughter and son. The son admitted to smoking marijuana and the daughter had her mother's permission to try sex before marriage. Miss Ford also requested a song that is, at best, suggestive to be played before the President of the United States, the Queen of England, and other dignitaries. This does not reflect well upon the parents.

A Christian that has outward sin in his life is no different in a spiritual sense because he is reflecting poorly upon God his Father.

WE ARE SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF ALMIGHTY GOD! We should act like it! If God truly be our Father, then we truly should try to conform our walk to a walk similar to Christ, our example!

We covered a verse earlier - let me quote it again. "I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation to which ye are called."

If, today you are a born again Christian, you have an holy calling from God - a holy vocation - you are the son or the daughter of Almighty God.

Paul begs us to live like it. When you go to the home of someone you know is quite important how do you want your children to act? You hope they are on their good behavior. You want them to be at peace with one another - to be helpful - to be, or act somewhat intelligent.

God is trying to impress the unsaved world with His children. He is trying to show the unsaved that His family is worth being a part of! He wants us to be on our good behavior!

The question is this, are you a proper child, or an embarrassment to your Father?

State is a personal choice for the Christian. You may not approve of the way I live. Maybe you think I'm wrong in some area of my life. That is between myself and my Father. I choose my state for myself, and you choose your state for yourself.

The point is this: We should all be before God planning our state. He will show us what He wants our state to be if we will ask Him. This state will always, let me emphasis ALWAYS be in line with the Scripture and always upward toward service and holiness.

He will never tell you to go downward in your spiritual life! He may give you a choice, but never say God told you to detract from your spiritual life!

Once, while we were between churches I didn't really feel like trying another new church so threw a prayer to God and came up with the fact that we shouldn't go to church that morning. GARBAGE! He gave me a choice, and I said no to Him. He didn't tell me not to go to church!

State is the believers chosen place and practice on the earth.

If we are committed to God, our STATE becomes His chosen place and practice on the earth for us. If we are not committed to Him then we do as we please. May each of us worry about our own states half as much as we worry about everyone else's state.


        STANDING                        STATE
1. In heaven                            On the earth
    Eph. 2:6                            Phil. 1:1

2. It is perfect                                It is imperfect
    Heb. 10:14                          Phil. 3:12-14

3. It is eternal                                It is till death
    Heb. 10:14

4. It is changeless                             It is changeable
    Heb. 10:10                          I Peter 3:18

5. We are sanctified                    Yet to be sanctified
    I Cor. 1:2                          I Cor. 3:1-3

6. Result of one act                    Result of many acts
    Acts 13:38,39                               II Cor 5:9,10

7. Justification by faith                       Justification by works
    Rom. 4:1-5                          James 2:21-26


8. It assures salvation                 It determines reward
    I Thess. 4:13-18                            I Cor. 3:11-15

9. In it resurrection is past                   Resurrection is future
    Eph. 2:5,6                          Phil. 3:20,21