Lawless – Part 2
If you’d like to live free from the power of sin, you must learn to live lawlessly. You are going to have to abandon the way of law in order to understand the way of grace.
I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5
The life of the vine goes into the branch, and then the branch bears fruit because the branch remains in the vine. Christ does not want you to go out and keep the law and be a rule follower. He wants you to go out and abide in him. This will change your mindset and your entire approach to following him. There’s no longer rule keeping and law failing but abiding and remaining instead.
Paul gives us some handles on what it means to abandon lawful living and to begin to understand what it means to have a growing, daily walk with the living, resurrected Christ. So, here’s what he says…
So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Galatians 5:16–18
To “walk” means to keep in step with. If you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. The conflict you’ve experienced of “I should, but I don’t” is going to be different and diminished. It’s a whole different way of thinking than, “God, I know all the things you want me to do, and, by golly, I am going to do them.”
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22–23
Do you know what fruit is? Fruit is the result of something that happens internally; it is produced in and through us. This is a different approach. This isn’t the law. The law will make you struggle. Fruit is “God, today, as I learn what it means to live in Christ, I want you to produce fruit through me.” It’s fruit, not a to-do list. Allow God to bear fruit in you.
Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Galatians 5:24–25
That’s the Christian life. It’s keeping in step with the Spirit of God. It’s a completely different approach. It’s a whole different mindset. It’s about keeping in step as opposed to keeping the law. It really starts with accepting your new identity. The new approach is simply, “God, today, I know all of the things I ought to do, and I will fail. Teach me to walk in the Spirit and to allow you to produce fruit through me.”
The Christian life is the life of Christ that has been given to you. It’s what guarantees you’ll go to heaven when you die, and it’s what guarantees that the power of sin has no hold on you. It’s what allows you to say no to sin. It allows you to personify sin and say, “I have been saying yes to you my whole life. Guess what? Now I’m saying no. I am in Christ, and Christ is in me, and the power of sin has been broken.” It is a brand-new approach.
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