Christ Has Set Us Free
From the beginning of time mankind was created and intended for freedom. We were never intended to lose what we possessed in the Garden of Eden, but because in Adam we chose our own way we experienced the full weight of our decision. What resulted was sin, death, legalism and annoyances. Jesus Christ came to redeem and restore that which was once lost in Adam. As the Last Adam, He has fully redeemed our innocence and restored us to the image and likeness of God in man; And yet, this freedom can at times be very difficult to hold onto.
The Apostle Paul was no stranger to the temptations to turn away from the freedom that we have in Christ that was and still is invading the church. Shortly after he would preach the gospel of grace, legalists would sweep in behind his back and distort and corrupt the original message confusing and leading people into bondage away from their freedom in Christ. Likewise, others would pollute the gospel of freedom believing that this was a license to sin and the result of losing their footing and freedom would entangle them as well into deception. This is no small matter in the eyes of the Apostle as he warned and fought to combat against both in the church (See Galatians 1: 6-10; 5: 1-10).
Two sides of the narrow way are always seeking to distract us from the freedom that we have in Christ. These two deceptive distractions are legalism and lawlessness. Jesus came to save us from both! He has removed believers from the old covenant law of performance and works by saving us apart from our own merit and performance. He has also likewise removed the power of sin that we inherited through Adam from our hearts by setting us free and making us new. Through the power of His cross He has saved us single handedly from both legalism and lawlessness.
I want to encourage you this week to keep your gaze upon Him and His true and perfect law of freedom wherein we are redeemed to innocence (completely forgiven) and restored to our true intended nature and identity in Christ (completely free). As we continue to know Him, His truth and love will empower us to believe that we are who He says we are and so we will begin to live and experience it more and more here and now as a gift of His goodness and grace.
“Don’t just listen to the Word of Truth and not respond to it, for that is the essence of self-deception. So always let his Word become like poetry written and fulfilled by your life! If you listen to the Word and don’t live out the message you hear, you become like the person who looks in the mirror of the Word to discover the reflection of his face in the beginning. You perceive how God sees you in the mirror of the Word, but then you go out and forget your divine origin. But those who set their gaze deeply into the perfecting law of liberty are fascinated by and respond to the truth they hear and are strengthened by it—they experience God’s blessing in all that they do!”
James 1:22-25 TPT
-- Pastor Shane