I first heard All I Have is Christ while YouTubing for new songs to learn. Little did I know God was about to reveal a personal anthem to our repertoire. At this time, I was not familiar with Sovereign Grace Music, and again, little did I know a slew of doctrinally sound lyrics were about to come to light in our music ministry. All I Have Is Christ, written by Jordan Kauflin, will join the hymns that have stood the test of time. The Bride of Christ will be singing All I Have Is Christ until the Bride Groom returns. If you have never heard this powerful song, I hope this reflection forces you to YouTube very soon.
Hallelujah, all I have is Christ
Hallelujah, Jesus is my life
So short but so powerful! This song is special because of the truth that is drenched in these lyrics: (1) All I have is Christ. This speaks truth in the depravity of man. We have absolutely nothing, dead, apart from Christ. We are spiritually bankrupt (Romans 5:12; Romans 6:23; Romans 8:7-8; Ephesians 2:1-3; Colossians 2:13). But, when the gospel of Christ grabs a hold of our soul and saves us, all we literally have is Christ. (2) Jesus is my life. This phrase speaks of two things. We were spiritually dead, and the only thing that brought us to life was the Spirit of Christ (John 3:5-8). In that sense, Jesus is our life because He gave us life (Romans 8:9-11). The second, when the Holy Spirit fills us, Jesus Christ is our life (John 16:13-15; Ephesians 5:18). We long to grow in Him. We yearn for knowledge of Him. We strive to be Him and to be Him before others. The silliness and darkness of this world means nothing when Jesus is our life (Romans 8:5). The question that must be asked: Are you truly able to sing this chorus?
I once was lost in darkest night
Yet thought I knew the way
The sin that promised joy and life
Had led me to the grave
I had no hope that You would own
A rebel to Your will
And if You had not loved me first
I would refuse You still
The first two verses are a testimony of salvation through Jesus Christ. I once was lost in darkest night reveals our spiritual state apart from Christ (John 3:18-20). Yet thought I knew the way speaks of why Scripture states that we do not seek God (Romans 3:9-20; 1 Corinthians 2:14). The reason why we do not seek God is because of our inherited pride (Psalm 14; 53). We believe the same thing Adam and Eve believed: we know more than God (Genesis 3:1-7). While maybe not literally thinking this way, our life before Christ uncovers this truth. Why seek for something else, when we have it all figured out? Our life of sin, fueled by our pride, blinded us to the reality: the sin that promised joy and life, had led me to the grave. The reality was a life of spiritual death and eternal separation from God (Romans 5:12-21; 1 Thessalonians 1:7-9). This reality gives the rebellious no hope of being owned by God, unless…if You had not loved me first, I would refuse You still. We as former rebels against God Almighty, would still be in our depraved state if He had not loved us first. Praise God for His unconditional love for rebels! Rebels against Christ, now heirs with Christ (Romans 8:12-17; Galatians 3:29; 4:1-7; Ephesians 1:11; 3:6; Titus 3:1-7)!
But as I ran my hell-bound race
Indifferent to the cost
You looked upon my helpless state
And led me to the cross
And I beheld God’s love displayed
You suffered in my place
You bore the wrath reserved for me
Now all I know is grace
As I ran my hell-bound race indifferent to the cost elaborates on what the first verse emphasizes. Because of our inability to seek God due to our inherited pride, we were racing to hell apart from Christ. And, because of God’s unconditional love for us, He looked upon our helpless state and led us to the cross. And I beheld God’s love displayed is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. What is this Gospel? You suffered in my place. You bore the wrath reserved for me, now all I know is grace. That is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The only one worthy to take our place because He perfectly lived all the requirements of the Law, Jesus Christ, the Son, bore the wrath of the Father that was reserved for our sin. Because the Father showed mercy on us by pouring His wrath on His Son and gloriously raising Him from the dead, we can boldly say that all we know is grace. All glory be to the Father for His plan of redemption! All glory be to the Son for accomplishing the Father’s redemptive plan! And, all glory be to the Holy Spirit for making the Father’s redemptive plan alive in us!
Now, Lord, I would be Yours alone
And live so all might see
The strength to follow Your commands
Could never come from me
Oh Father, use my ransomed life
In any way You choose
And let my song forever be
My only boast is You
Verse three can only be proclaimed and accomplished by a true disciple of Christ. Faith without works is dead (James 2:17, 26). What James is basically saying is that a “faith” that does not produce works for Christ, is not a real God-given faith in the first place. Do works save us? No. The man who “works for Christ” to receive his own gain, is not truly working for Christ. Is works a sign of true faith? Definitely. A true disciple of Christ will not work out of obligation but out of love for their Redeemer. And, a true disciple of Christ will work in such a way where it is only by the strength and will of God that the works are being accomplished: Now, Lord, I would be Yours alone and live so all might see. The strength to follow Your commands could never come from me (John 15:5). Allow me to reveal a truth: Our works will never contradict Scripture, which means the Holy Spirit leading and guiding the works of true faith will never lead or guide contrary to what Scripture commands. This truth supports Jesus’ statement in John 14:23, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word.” The only way we are able to keep Jesus’ Word is through the power of the Holy Spirit, and the only way the Holy spirit can help us keep His Word is by having true God-given faith, not a dead self-given faith. Only through true God-given faith and the power of the Holy Spirit can a true disciple of Christ live and proclaim: O Father, use my ransomed life in any way You choose, and let my song forever be my only boast is You. Because our works are not accomplished by our strength, all we can do is boast in our Strength, and our Strength is Christ alone. En Cristo Solo!