When you begin a relationship with Jesus Christ, you experience the deliverance and freedom God secured for you when Jesus died and rose again. You’re released from slavery to sin, to death, and to the law itself.

That doesn’t mean you no longer need to honor the spirit of the law. It simply means that the condemnation that results from failing to keep God’s law is no longer a factor in your life. Whereas in the past, you needed to keep all the rules to even attempt the impossible task of living a perfect life before God, now you simply rest in God’s grace while enjoying his favor and goodness.

The problem, though, is that we tend to drift back into our old ways. In our brokenness, we attempt to walk again in the keeping of the rules to make God happy. Paul advised us to fight against this error…

So Christ has truly set us free. Now make sure that you stay free, and don’t get tied up again in slavery to the law.

~ Galatians 5:1 NLT

It’s so tempting to want to fit in with Christians who seem super spiritual, whose standards are higher than everyone else’s in a way that leads to pride and self-righteousness. Don’t go there. It’s one thing to have a personal moral standard that guides you in staying out of trouble. It’s quite another to place non-biblical rules and expectations on the same level as Scripture.

Remember this: Keeping rules will never make you right with God. Jesus already did that on your behalf and now invites you to step out of slavery and into freedom entirely by grace.

This is the way to rest, to the easing of your burdens, to thriving spiritually – living under grace and rejecting slavery to any legalistic way of living.


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