by Pastor David
This week, we who are Americans celebrate Independence Day. God has been kind to give us our religious freedom and our history in a democracy that prizes individual liberty. It’s a blessing to be in a nation where we enjoy such freedom as Christians. Historically speaking, it’s also quite rare.
It’s very possible that while we’ll enjoy some fireworks and picnics this week, we may also take our American freedom for granted. It’s also possible for us to undervalue our freedom in Christ. It’s sad to not appreciate one’s national heritage; it’s devastating to not appreciate Christ’s liberating work.
In Galatians 5:1, Paul wrote “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.” Christ’s work on the cross was intentionally liberating. By keeping the Law for us, Christ freed us from trying to earn our justification. By bringing the Law to its fulfillment, Christ ended the functional era of the Law and replaced it with His own Law. Christ’s whole intent in setting us free was that we would live in that freedom.
It would be bizarre for an American citizen to insist on living under the laws of England. In a similar way, Paul finds it ludicrous that anyone who knows the freedom of Christ would want to return to the slavery of the Law. In Christ, we are free from the yoke of a Law we could never keep. We are free from entire sets of rules and regulations. Do you know how good it is to be free? Do you celebrate your freedom in Christ, and worship God more deeply because of it? You are justified by the grace of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, not any Law. What glorious freedom!