Thursday, May 28, 2009

Why We’re Free

What is it that sets Christians up in freedom from this world and from the clutches of spiritual condemnation for their sin? I found myself yet again arriving at the answer to this question only recently. It was as fresh as the very first time and I find that truly remarkable.

At my wedding two years ago one of the two songs played by the worship team there was a song called, Jesus, All for Jesus. This Robin Mark song has so few lyrics it could be described as a chant.

The thing that grabbed me as fresh as a picked daisy was the line, “For it’s only in Your will that I am free,” and this for three solid reasons (at least).

Firstly, it was in Jesus’ will to go to the Cross and suffer all sorts of indignities and even death--on my personal behalf--almost two thousand years before I was born. It is a theological fact that he went there by virtue of his very own will, for he had many opportunities to escape or be released.

But, he cooperated with the will of the Father, and with the will of humanity back then (and with the eternal will of humanity at that).[1] We know when we receive him that sense of God’s grace for Jesus’ life, so we can at once identify with Cross-guilt, although instead of shame, it is miraculous grace we receive--God’s gift of spiritual salvation.

Secondly, it was in Jesus’ will to break-in to my life at the distinct, pre-defined, destined point he did. The person of Jesus Christ stooped down from the heavens through the omnipresent Holy Spirit, at that time, and brought me at once to freedom from myself. How often this occurs in depths of personal pain is astounding. He arrives just in time for us. He breaks-in by invitation only yet also compellingly.

And freedom from self is not something ever to be taken lightly, ever. It’s the paradoxical key to real life itself.

Furthermore, and thirdly, he does it each day. He breaks-in afresh, showering me with insight on situations, both revelation of my own wrongs and anointing encouragement when I do right.

His Spirit is in constant dialogue with me if I’m choosing to listen consistently, seeking him in prayer and via his Word. He breaks-in, but in this way only as one invited. And we invite him by seeking him (see Matthew 7:7-8, Luke 13:25 and Revelation 3:20).

Jesus’ will for my salvation (and yours) is eternal; both an unchangeable historical fact and an ever-present reality, right now--and everything in between.

Copyright © 2009, S. J. Wickham. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

[1] This is irrefutable for both the Christian and non-Christian, both from the views of sin and salvation. We all share the guilt of sending Jesus to the cross (believer’s view), and if we don’t (the unbeliever’s view) we don’t care, so we send him there with ‘our blessing.’ Of course, this is unpacked in many ways in volumes of theology. The Cross is the masterstroke of an awesome, loving Creator.

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