People don’t think they are slaves in a free country. But if you just have to have that new gadget or you can’t live out without the new cute outfit in the mall, you are a slave. If you just have to watch the latest Hollywood production or you just have to buy a new car to be popular, you are a slave. If you just have to have your way, not God’s way, you are a slave.
But even if we are set free by God’s grace, there are still things we need to know about how to be truly free. There are things that are in contrast with freedom. We are not to use this freedom as an excuse to do whatever we want to do. Because that is a sure way to destroy our freedom.
It is absolutely clear that God has called you to a free life. Just make sure that you don’t use this freedom as an excuse to do whatever you want to do and destroy your freedom. Rather, use your freedom to serve one another in love; that’s how freedom grows. For everything we know about God’s Word is summed up in a single sentence: Love others as you love yourself. That’s an act of true freedom. If you bite and ravage each other, watch out—in no time at all you will be annihilating each other, and where will your precious freedom be then? (Galatians 5:13-15, MSG)
Free grace does not mean that we can do whatever we want to.
Free grace means we are free to love.
Free grace means we are empowered to serve God.
And that’s how our freedom grows.
Not by misusing free grace.
But by surrendering to grace.
My counsel is this: Live freely, animated and motivated by God’s Spirit. Then you won’t feed the compulsions of selfishness. For there is a root of sinful self-interest in us that is at odds with a free spirit, just as the free spirit is incompatible with selfishness. These two ways of life are antithetical, so that you cannot live at times one way and at times another way according to how you feel on any given day. Why don’t you choose to be led by the Spirit and so escape the erratic compulsions of a law-dominated existence? (Galatians 5:16-18, MSG)
To live truly free is to live fully in grace. How can we then fully enter into grace? By repenting and asking Jesus to continually live in our heart. By habitually abiding in the Holy Spirit. By basking in God’s grace.
A truly free life is motivated and empowered by the Holy Spirit. That is the only way to leave selfishness behind. We can’t do it but God can.
Selfishness is in contrast with freedom. We can’t choose our way and be truly free. It is either God’s way or our way. Because of grace it is our choice.
Thankfully God is not proud and takes us back even when we have sinned. But we are not to use this freedom in Christ as an excuse to live selfishly. These two ways are incompatible.
What to do then? Live freely, animated and motivated by God’s Spirit. Then you are truly free.
How good you are!
You have provided us grace to free us.
Enable us to see what things in our live
are in contrast with freedom.
Empower us to leave selfishness behind
and live in your grace.
Abide in us!
Make us truly free!
In Jesus’ name,
Q4U: What things in your live are in contrast with freedom?
Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you abide in Christ and live truly free!