True Freedom by the Spirit
I need to clarify something here. I think it is very clear at this point biblically that we are no longer supposed to live in sin, so what now? Like I said earlier, the Christian church these days accepts that people live in sin every day because we cannot help ourselves. That’s the point right there. We can’t do anything about our sin nature. Only God can. I don’t believe God’s intention is to hold people in a legalistic/law-minded form of bondage. On the contrary, sin took advantage of the law (Romans 7:8), and God does not want the Christian to be law-oriented; He wants Christians to be freedom-oriented. God always knew the law was powerless to set us free but that was His desire for us all along—complete freedom. So what did He do? He took the list of requirements held against us by the law and nailed it to the cross (Colossians 2:14)! And since we were fully cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ, God had a perfect avenue to send us His Spirit who empowers us to fulfill the law and finally achieve all that God designed us to do.
So what are we supposed to do? How do we fulfill the law and be freedom-oriented simultaneously? We are supposed to walk in the Spirit, not in the flesh. It’s time to stop being sin conscious and start being God conscious, and we do this by committing to keep our focus on the One who sets us free. Too often we get so wrapped up in what we did wrong or why our struggle against the flesh is so difficult, but that is not God’s vision for us. We need to stop focusing on our problems and start focusing on the Solution!
While Peter was walking on the water toward Jesus, he was doing great until he did one thing: he took his eyes off the Lord. He started looking around at the storm (at his problems, worries, fears, hardships, etc.), and then what happened? He started sinking. Honestly, I believe that God fully expects us to do the impossible, which is to live a sin-free life, starting now. Yes, I know it feels like walking on water. But if we keep our focus on God, “all things are possible to him who believes” (Mark 9:23)! Nothing is impossible if we have God with us! I think it’s time for the church to change our understanding of the word believer. Don’t you?
Amazingly, our identity changes drastically when we begin to actually believe that Jesus bought us complete freedom, and through that belief, we can begin to sincerely walk in the Spirit. I’ve seen the fruit of this in my own life and the lives of others, and it is wonderful to behold! Fear, worry, anxiety, and depression are replaced by permanent peace and joy; wrath and lust are rendered powerless; sickness flees as the body is healed; hope continually anchors the soul; and the love of Christ compels us to share the Gospel with any who will listen! It’s essential to realize that walking in the Spirit and obtaining this miraculous transformation is all about faith. You see, as believers, we hold on to faith, despite how difficult our circumstances or present situations seem to be. And we are not empowered by our own strength or ability to keep this faith, but rather our faith lies in the faithfulness of God to deliver us from any struggle or any obstacle that seems to be in our way and He will be our power for us (see Psalms 91).
Brothers and sisters in Christ, I am very aware that our daily hardships and tribulations can easily feel consuming, overtake us, and leave us feeling burned, but I’m telling you that the fire cannot harm you because the fire is not the issue. We need to believe that there is Another in the fire with us and that He will carry us through it unharmed (Daniel 3:25)! If God shut the mouths of the lions for Daniel because Daniel was found innocent before the Lord (Daniel 6:22), how much more will He shut the mouths of lions for you who were cleansed and made righteous by the precious blood of Jesus?
So do you believe that you are truly innocent and righteous before the Lord, or are you still a sinner who sins every day? My deep concern for us is this: if we truly believe that we are continually tainted by sin, then does that belief actually cause us to remain tainted? And if we are, in fact, tainted by sin, then will we truly be found innocent before the Lord when the lions come into our lives seeking to devour us? I want you to seriously give this question some thought. What is your regular confession about your innocence and righteousness? Do you regularly express gratitude that Jesus your Savior has made you righteous? Or do you more regularly confess that you are nothing but a wretched sinner? Hear me brother or sister in Christ: I want you to know that your confession will absolutely affect whether or not the enemy has power over your life. Your expression of faith (or the lack thereof) is certainly known in the spirit world.