As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him.
—Colossians 2:6-7 NKJV
We didn’t receive salvation because of our own righteousness or goodness (Titus 3:5). We received salvation by putting our faith in Christ as our Savior (Ephesians 2:8). In the same way, we receive everything else in the Christian life. However, many who were saved by faith in God’s grace try to earn the benefits of their salvation by their works. They believe God blesses them because of what they do.
When we were saved by faith, we came just as we were—knowing we had nothing to offer. We hadn’t been fasting, reading the Word, or praying a lot but we received the greatest gift of all. We received a new life in Christ. But after receiving Christ by faith, many believe that they can only maintain and keep their salvation through works. They believe if they don’t fast enough or pray enough or read enough or give enough that they will fall from grace. That is not true. Paul said that those who attempt to prove themselves righteous fall from grace (Galatians 5:4).
“This only I want to learn from you,” Paul asked the Galatians. “Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh? (Galatians 3:2-3, NKJV).
We don’t need to be so foolish! Having begun our Christian life by the grace of Jesus, we should continue our Christian walk in grace. Faith in the grace of Jesus produces works within us that are alive and not about us. Any work that is born of the need to prove to God that we are worthy is about us. It tells God that His grace wasn’t enough. Christ died so we might be made worthy. He paid that price. Not us.
Instead of focusing on our inadequacies, we need to put faith in what God has already provided by grace.
“Listen,” Paul declared! “If you are counting on circumcision to make you right with God, then Christ will be of no benefit to you. I’ll say it again. If you are trying to find favor with God by being circumcised, you must obey every regulation in the whole law of Moses. 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 5:2-4, NLT).
If we are counting on what we do to make us right with God, there is no benefit to us. These works are dead. We can’t find favor with God through what we do because He has already favored us in Christ. If we try to make ourselves right with God by keeping the law, we fall away from His grace.
“But we who live by the Spirit,” Paul continued, “eagerly wait to receive by faith the righteousness God has promised to us. For 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 5:5-6, NKJV).
Let’s live by the Spirit! Let’s know who we are in Christ so we don’t have the need to prove ourselves to God who already proved Himself to us. When we know the immeasurable worth Christ has placed within us, we know there is no benefit in what we do. Faith in the good grace of God produces results within us.
When what we do is born of our faith in Christ’s work, we have no need to prove ourselves by our work. We are free of the need to perform. The love of God abounds within and flows through us into the lives of others.
It is not about us. It is about Him living within us.
© 2022 Lynn Lacher