From God’s viewpoint, there were only two tablets worth of laws. Since He wrote them Himself, He must have had in mind how much stone it would take.

 

But, when the Pharisees’s came along, they decided the law needed more detail. In fact, they added pages and pages of interpretation. People like that really annoy me. What about you?

 

Yet, the Apostle James said that when we quibble that another Christian isn’t doing it our way, we are setting up random laws just like the Pharisees. “He who speaks against a brother, and judges his brother, speaks against the law, and judges the law” (James 4:11).

 

You see, God’s law in Christ Jesus is meant to actually simplify our rule-keeping rather than increase it. You’ve been set free from meticulous perfectionism. There is now only one Law: Life.

 

Life-Law is hearing moment by moment what to do next. This is done by listening directly to His Spirit. We are no longer bound by religious “ought-to’s”.

 

 

We don’t escape from legalism (or sin for that matter) by predetermining what we will do next. That has never worked. And still won’t .

 

Instead, the plan is to simply agree with His plan. We turn the “doing of it” over to Him. 

 

Predetermining procedures simply takes the Life-breath out of walking in the Spirit

 

Fastidiously splitting hairs just drags others into our misery. Before we know it, we are pressing them into our self-made mold and trash-talking them when they slip out. 

 

If God has not particularly spelled out a mode of action in His Word, He must have a broad interpretation for the way it can be enacted. 

 

Then why do we think our particular interpretation is the only way it can be achieved? (It’s the Lord who will accomplish what concerns you, remember?

 

For the most part, let others be, dear Christian.  

 

Do not speak against one another.

 

That’s the only way to give God space to work within you. 

 

We are to do what the Life-law breathes upon us to do – and that is usually something simple like keeping your mouth shut or loving the unlovely. 

 

Let God breathe suitable actions into your fellow Christian. That’s when BodyLife will work. He is working everything out for the good of the whole.

 

 

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grave

 

During the twenty years that we lived overseas, I often lost track of upcoming American holidays. Before wide-spread internet connection, I have to admit that the last Monday of May was usually spent with end of the year parties and summer plans. 

 

Yet, I vividly remember my first Memorial Day weekend back in the states in 2007. As our church sang patriotic songs and remembered those who had died for our freedom, I was moved to tears and ashamed that I had so seldom celebrated this national holiday.

 

First called “Decoration Day”, the Memorial Day-type observance began as a day to decorate the graves of fallen Civil War heroes.  Although placing flowers on the tombs began as early as the first year of the Civil War, it wouldn’t be until over 100 years later that the federal government would set aside a specific day to observe the holiday.

 

As Christians, today should be a very special day for each of us. Of course, we must remember those who have given themselves for our country’s freedom and thank the families of those who are remembering their loss.

 

But, we have another death to remember. That of our own. 

 

Our old self died when He died (Romans 6:6).

 

Let’s take some time today to remember this glorious fact and visit our own gravesite. 

 

When God looks at who you were before Christ, He sees a dead man – complete with coffin and tombstone. Your body of sin has be done away with, so that you no longer have to be at sin’s beck and call (Romans 6:7). 

 

Remembering our old man doesn’t create any fond memories within us. That was one life that we can rejoice with its passing. When we were made to die to that old way of life, we were then released to enter into a whole different life that was already blameless and free: the very same Life of Christ (Romans 7:4).

 

With our gravesite full, we have been released from the rules and regulations of offending God. Christ can’t offend Him – so neither can we. Instead, we can serve God on the other side of the grave – in newness of Spirit – not the tit for tat of the Law-regulated living (Romans 7:6). 

 

Spend a moment at your own burial plot. 

 

  • Decorate that gravesite with wreaths of thanksgiving and praise that you no longer have to live like that anymore. 

 

  • Pause before your tombstone and receive His promise that though your body is dead, your spirit is alive because of His righteousness within you (Romans 8:10).  

 

  • Breathe deeply and remember that the same mighty God that raised Jesus from the dead, will also spill out His Life through your spirit, to your soul, and eventually through your physical body (Romans 8:11; 1 Thessalonians 5:23).

 

As you walk away, know that you will probably need to come back here tomorrow. 

 

Because remembering that we are already dead to sin helps us live like we are already in the heavenlies.

 

(What’s in your sarcophagus?)

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