Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Christian Liberty to love!

from Joni's Diamonds in the Dust, January 21

Law and Liberty

"Therefore the Law has become our tutor 
to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. 
But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor."
Galatians 3:24-25

Sometimes the sins we commit are not moral ones but spiritual.  We cultivate a legal attitude toward God, and that's wrong.  Christians start out in the Spirit, but when it comes to daily living, we try to perfect ourselves by the flesh.

The Law says, do these things and you shall live, but the Gospel says, live and these things you will do.  The Law commands us to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, and mind; the Gospel says that this is love: Not that we have sought God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to atone for our sins.

The Law demands holiness, but the Gospel gives holiness.  The Law makes blessings the result of obedience, but the Gospel makes obedience the result of blessings.  Under the Law, the old man was restrained, but with the Gospel, the new man is given liberty.  And one more thing: Salvation was earned under the Law, but under the Gospel, salvation is a gift.  

If we are right in our inward being, we shall certainly do right in our outward actions.  This is what Christian liberty is all about.

Picture a woman who is a servant in a house and under the law of her master whom she tries to please.  She's paid a wage.  She does her duty.  
But then,the master offers her his love and lifts her up from her place of service to be his bride and share his wealth.  She may continue to do the same things, but now she does them with a different motive---love, not duty!

Lord, my old sense of duty is now lost in my new sense of love.


Anonymous said...

Really nice devotional from Joni. "If we are right in our inward being, we shall certainly do right in our outward actions." Exactly. The Christian walk is an outflowing of love, not just rote duty.

(Though, I would disagree with Joni on one point. In OT times, salvation still was a matter of faith, and was a gift, and was not earned through the Law. Blessings/cursings came through the Law, but salvation has always been by unmerited faith alone in the gracious redemptive heart of God. Abraham believed God and it was credited to him as righteousness (Rom 4:3). The righteous shall live by faith. (Hab 2:4, Gal 3:11))


The Piper's Wife said...

Carolyn, I agree that in OT times it was still a person's faith that saved them--well, expressed by you--thanks. I would think that Joni would agree---perhaps too much for her to express in a "page-sized" devotion?