During the fifteen years I was trapped by legalism, I was attempting to live for Jesus. The new person we are in Christ has a deep desire to live a life that pleases Jesus. However, when living by that desire roars down the track of self-determination, it is actually the flesh attempting to live for Jesus. This, of course, is an impossibility.
To be clear, Scripture instructs us to live for Jesus. I share because many people in legalism do this as a means of attempting to get more of God’s love, blessings, or usefulness to Him. Yet, when a person comes to understand we are to live by grace, they may believe that living for Jesus is unbiblical because of the erroneous reasons they did this before. I understand this from my own experience with legalism. I, too, thought like that for a while. Yet, look at 2 Corinthians 5:15, “And he died for all so that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but for the one who died for them and was raised.”
The only way to do this is to live by faith in the One who lives in us. In so doing, we continue to learn to live from Christ in us so we can live for Him. That is what Galatians 2:20 tells us, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
We also live for Him because we live confident that He loves us. This is not an attempt to pay Him back or to prove anything to Him. It is simply a grateful response. I love Jesus just as you do. How could we not since He loves us and loved us before we loved Him.
Here is a wonderful conclusion from Scripture. “Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory” (1 Peter 1:8).
Live Free in Christ!
Mark Maulding, President and Founder
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