But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Galatians 5:18
If we believe in Jesus, we don’t have to follow the law anymore? If we believe in Jesus, we aren’t subject to arrest, prosecution, etc? That’s a sweet deal!
But before you go off celebrating, remember what it is you’re celebrating. If all someone did was read snippets of Scripture, one would walk away thinking “that’s insane.” But that someone would be left without complete understanding of what Paul was actually saying. For understanding, more context is needed; more context is always needed to build real knowledge, wisdom, and understanding.
God frees us to follow Him, to live in the world He created without putting rules around how we believe in Him. God frees us to believe as we will, to follow Him or not. If we choose to not follow Him, there are consequences. And if we choose to follow Him, there are different consequences. God frees us from the conscience-killing guilt of being under the spiritual penalty of choosing sin. He did it by sacrificing His only Son in our place, paying our blood-debt for freedom. We don’t have to wear only our Sunday-best to worship Him. We don’t have to say ten Hail Mary’s to be made righteous with Jesus. We don’t have to lay out our churches only in the shape of a cross. We don’t have to strictly follow just the church calendar.
The Sunday best, the Hail Mary’s, the shape of the church, the calendar: those aren’t bad things. They aren’t designed to be sinful. But they can be made sinful if we put more emphasis on them than on worshipping the Lord. Even with the best of intentions, good things can be badly misused.
Yesterday was America’s Independence Day. 246 years of living free, of cherishing our God-given rights to do what we want, say what we want, be who we want. When you live in the land of the free, however, you aren’t free to do everything you want. You can’t use your freedom to hurt others. You have rights as an American because they are naturally occurring from God, not some government or aged politician. Yet liberty isn’t liberal or libertine because the freedom to live isn’t the freedom to hurt or violate the freedoms of others.
We are still subject to civil law even as we’re free from mankind’s spiritual penalties. We’re free to live, not abuse or misuse. When our service to God becomes a snare for someone else, it’s no longer free. It’s no longer what Holy Spirit bestowed on us. He knows we still need boundaries, and some boundaries have governments involved.
For further reading: Romans 2:12, 1 Timothy 1:9, Galatians 5:19
Lord, thank You for giving us freedom, for making us free, for sending Your Spirit to free us and teach us healthy boundaries.
If you’d like to know more about Practical Proverbials, contact email@example.com for more information