I looked at the clock and sighed, frustrated with yet another Sunday evening spent in a haze of laundry. Socks, undershirts, pants, work shirts, and towels stood in piles waiting to be put away while I took out the last load from the dryer. Eleven p.m. and NOT all was well. [Read more…]
THE LAW has always been a big scary concept to me. As a recovering worrier, I have often been afraid of breaking a LAW I did not know existed … as you know ignorance of the LAW is no excuse. God, however, hides His law from no one. In the Old Testament, He clearly spells out the Ten Commandments. In the New Testament, He shortens the Ten Commandments to two: love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and love your neighbor as yourself. Love God, love others.
In the Greek, law transliterates as nomos which means a precept, an injunction, a rule of action, a set of behaviors that leads to God’s approval. Torah, the Hebrew word for law, refers to Mosaic law. It is by the flawless keeping of God’s law one may go to heaven … unfortunately, all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Even the keeping of the New Testament short list (see above) is an impossibility. Fortunately, God’s Word offers us something besides the LAW of sin and death … the law of the Spirit of life, otherwise known as GRACE.
Because Christ offered His perfect sinless life as a sacrifice, we may live for Christ, and one day join Him in heaven. We must acknowledge our sin and need for a Savior, and accept Jesus death on the cross as payment for our sin.
Grace over LAW. Life over death. Righteousness over sin.
- In what ways are you still trying to earn God’s approval?
- You know God’s law, the one you broke about twenty years ago, that you think is unforgivable? It was paid for 2,000 years ago at the cross. It’s time to let it go. Thank God for His forgiveness and sacrifice.
- Now that you’re free, what do you need to start doing?
God Bless America.
Please enjoy the music below.
“law.” Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. 01 Jul. 2015. <Dictionary.com http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/law>.
Out of my distress I called on the LORD;
the LORD answered me and set me free.
free [free] adjective
One of my European cousins has often commented on the American’s obsession with freedom. I must admit, I love the freedoms granted by our Constitution. Why? Because freedom means choice. It means I am free to be who God created me to be.
Freedom is also a very important spiritual concept, more important than national freedom. In fact, a person cannot be completely free unless they have been set free from sin. Most Americans have not experienced the bondage of physical slavery, but we all have been in bondage to sin. But because Jesus died for us on the cross, we have been set free.
The Hebrew word for freedom used in the verse above is merchab which means a broad roomy place. or wide expanses. Merchab is derived from the root word rachab which means to grow large, to grow wide. One of the things Jesus frees us from is distresses, metsar in the Hebrew. Metsar, which means trouble, pains, or tight places, when traced to its root also means, stomach. From the previous definitions, we can infer our worries keep us small, stunt our growth, hem us in, and tie our stomach in knots.
Ironically, Jesus sets us free so we can experience true freedom by becoming … slaves of Christ. His yoke is easy and His burden is light. When Jesus sets us free, we are free indeed.
- A slave does the will of his Master. What area/s of life are you still controlling?
- Because you are safe in the hands of your Master, what are you free to do?
- What are the blessings of living according to the will of the Good Master?
- How does being a slave of Christ bring freedom?
God Bless America.
We hope you enjoy the music below.
“free.” Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. 28 Jun. 2015. <Dictionary.com http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/firm>.
“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”
Why has Christ set us free? So we can be free. God does not want us to be enslaved to any sin or habit. The chains of sin prevent us from walking with Christ. If we have accepted Christ as our Savior, we have the power, at any moment, to let it (sin) go.
Anger … let it go. Wrath … let it go. Bitterness … let it go. Jealousy, hatred, envy, vengeance … let it go. When we let these injurious things go, we will be able to receive God’s healing and blessing.
As our verse states, freedom requires work. We must stand firm and not let ourselves be burdened again with sinful thoughts, attitudes and habits. We have been freed so we can set these things free. Let them go and let Him fill us up.
1. Name one thing you need to let go.
2. If you let it go, how will your life change?
3. What will you do in place of the item you let go?
Life is sweet.
“For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” Colossians 1:13-14 (NIV)
Today is the second day of our Holy Week series, and the stanza of the poem that is our focus is the following:
Fast from bitterness; feast on forgiveness.
Imagine sitting down on a hot summer day to a bowl full of frosty, juicy, crisp grapes that burst in your mouth with… bitterness. [Read more…]