For if you are trying to make yourselves right with God by keeping the law, you have been cut off from Christ! You have fallen away from God’s grace.
—Galatians 5:4 (NLT)
Do you try to make yourself right with God by living a perfect life? When you live a righteous life to prove to yourself and to God that you are righteous, then you have missed the whole point of the finished work of Christ. When Jesus said, “It is finished," He proved that our work trying to be good enough would never amount to anything. It is an impossible task. His Grace alone fulfilled the Law perfectly. There is nothing more for you to do but believe in Christ and allow the Holy Spirit to convince you what Christ accomplished for you. Then you have the freedom to live His righteousness instead of struggling to live your own.
Falling from Grace is not falling into sin. It is falling into the mental and emotional agony of trying to keep the Law. And working to keep the Law doesn’t keep you from falling into sin. It only makes you doubt God’s forgiveness and love. And when you sin, repentance isn’t working to make yourself right with God. Repentance is a decision to turn entirely away from wrongdoing and never go back to it. If you try to make yourself right with God, you cut yourself off from Christ’s grace.
“You have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, ‘Abba, Father’” (Romans 8:15, NLT).
You don’t need to be a slave to the Law—to live in fear of not being good enough to meet its standards. Christ, as the perfect sacrifice, met its standards. You have been accepted in Christ, and you have been sealed with the Holy Spirit. God has adopted you. When you know that God is your Abba Father, you have child-like faith in Him. You know that your relationship is based on unconditional love that forgives and accepts you. The Grace of Jesus has opened access to His Father and made Him your Father, too! When you believe this, you discover deeper intimacy and trust. You trust that He guides you as a loving parent. You understand that the gift of His Grace is freedom from the performance trap of keeping the Law and its accompanying feelings of shame and guilt. You are free to receive His Grace and love as never before. And with this awareness, you experience His peace and joy.
“When we place our faith in Christ Jesus, there is no benefit in being circumcised or being uncircumcised. What is important is faith expressing itself in love" (Galatians 5:6, NLT).
You never benefit from what you do—from placing your faith in the Law. You don’t have to earn the benefits Jesus has already earned for you. They are His gift to you. You receive them by faith. What is important is placing your faith in Christ's redeeming love.
A person who believes in the Grace of Jesus seeks to live a life of faith. He knows he has been forgiven of the rules he has broken. He accepts his forgiveness and allows the Holy Spirit to guide His life. He knows that he has one requirement—to just believe.
You are free from the performance trap of the Law. Have you grasped this? Allow the Holy Spirit to reveal the Truth about His Grace and your relationship with God. You don’t have to live in fear of failure and losing His love. He is your Father, and He is love. Draw God’s Truth into your heart and allow the Holy Spirit to teach you to believe.
© 2021 Lynn Lacher