There are six steps.
I WAS CRUCIFIED WITH CHRIST
Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ.” The King James Version erroneously translated this verse as, “I am crucified.”
Romans 6:6, “Knowing this that our old man was crucified with him that the body of sin might be destroyed, that so we should no longer be in bondage to sin.”
Romans 4:25 gives this to us, “Who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.” He was delivered up on the account of our trespasses. On the cross, God made Him to become sin for us. It was our spiritual death and our trespasses that He bore. He became Identified with us on the cross. He was our Substitute.
I DIED WITH CHRIST
Romans 6:5, “For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death” ; and Romans 6:8, “But if we died with Christ.” As He died we died with Him. Christ would not have died physically if He had not first had our spiritual death laid upon His Spirit. So there followed as a result of our identification with Him in crucifixion, the death of His body which had then become mortal, “subject to death,” as had Adam’s when he died spiritually. We died with Him. As His spirit left His physical body and went into Hell we were identified with Him. There may arise in the minds of some a question concerning the meaning of the words of Christ spoken to the thief while He was upon the Cross. Some may ask, “What did the Master mean when He said to the thief on the cross, `Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in Paradise’?” A better translation punctuates it as follows: “I say unto thee today, thou shalt be with me in Paradise.” He did not say, “I will be with you in Paradise today,” but, “I am telling you today, I will meet you in Paradise.” Jesus could not go to Paradise until He had paid the penalty of the Old Covenant transgressions that were blood-covered.
I WAS BURIED WITH CHRIST
Romans 6:4, “We were buried therefore with Him through Baptism into death” ; and Colossians 2:12, “Having been buried with him in baptism.” Baptism is a type of our burial with Christ; His body lay in the tomb, but His spirit suffered in Hell as He paid the penalty that was due man. He could adequately pay man’s penalty and meet the demands of Justice because He had been identified with man. The penalty He paid was not His, but man’s with whom He had been made one. In the mind of God, it was you and I there in that place of torment, bearing the judgment that was due us. On the basis of this identification the man who receives the Redemptive work of Christ need not go to Hell but goes free, while the man who refuses Christ’s redemption on his behalf must go there. When the penalty of man’s high treason was paid, man was freed from his bondage to Satan. In Romans 6:1-11, in which we have given to us our identification with Christ in crucifixion, death and burial, we have the following facts revealed: The body of sin, or the body of spiritual death, was destroyed (Romans 6:6). Man was released from spiritual death (Romans 6:7 Revised Version footnotes) because he died in Christ and adequately paid his penalty. When the penalty had been paid, man stood before God justified or declared righteous. We are glad that we know the meaning of the word “righteousness.” Socrates, called the father of philosophy, taught that one, before he could speak intelligently on any subject, must be able to define the terms he used. The word, “Righteousness” means “the ability of man to stand in the presence of God as free from sin and condemnation as though there had never been any spiritual death within his spirit.” When God could declare man righteous and legally freed from spiritual death, He had the right to impart life, His own nature, to the spirit of man. So, after Christ had been declared righteous in His spirit, because our penalty was paid, He was made alive. The identification of man and Christ that had been complete upon the cross, continues and the next step is: