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Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Debt-Free Identity

Matthew 18:23-35

Read the parable of the unforgiving servant in Matthew 18:23-35. The servant in the parable did not understand that his master had entirely canceled his debt, and in his misunderstanding, believed that he still had to collect money from someone who owed him to pay it off. What if that servant had heard his master correctly? What if the knowledge of his new debt-free state had penetrated his soul? Joy would have seized him. Peace would have defeated fear in his mind. The excessive debt to his master was impossible to pay. If only that servant had received the message that the master had wiped his slate clean, how free He would have been! 

Jesus fully paid your debt for sin. He wiped your slate clean. Yet, do you live as if you are still under obligation—forever struggling to win God’s approval? Why do you allow the enemy to debit your life? Is it because you believe you owe something and must make payment as penance? Self-effort never credits your spiritual account with His righteousness. Good works can never save you. So what does your payment achieve? The enemy of your soul blackmails you, saying you must continue to make payment to experience forgiveness. The truth is your payment is never enough. The enemy’s lie is that the debt even exists. In Jesus, you are forgiven and free.

If you could understand the truth of the Gospel that you, like the servant in the parable, are entirely debt-free, you would begin to grasp your identity in Christ. You would see yourself as He sees you—freely and forever forgiven by His Grace. You would comprehend the truth that Jesus became your sin so you could have His righteousness. Almost too good to be true—this truth is life-changing!

Knowing you are debt-free in Jesus is freedom from the performance trap. Work done for Him, trying to atone for a debt you do not owe, achieves you nothing but frustration or pride. Knowing and believing Jesus has paid your debt in full gives you freedom like nothing else. You do not work for Him because you owe Him. Work for Him is born of your faith. It flows from the greatest debt-free joy. You have a revelation of His Grace as never before. His love pours through you—freely received and manifested. At last, you understand what your freedom means!

Jesus accepts and approves of you—not because of who you are but because of who He is and what He has done. Abraham’s faith was credited to Him as righteousness. Faith in the finished work of Jesus on the Cross is credited to you as righteousness. You do not have to prove who you are in Jesus. He has already shown it on the Cross. Jesus became your sin so that you might know freedom in His righteousness. There is no debt. There is nothing to be debited. You are debt-free.

© 2020 Lynn Lacher

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