On Freedom

*While agonizing over A N O M A L Y: Villain, this was one of the snippets that made its way to the bodega, and now, as a post on its own…

Before coming to life in Christ, I believe everything ‘good’ we’ve had, had another side to the coin. As you’ll see, in Christ, both sides of the coin are equally powerful. -JB

Freedom From Fear

Being one with Christ means we have freedom. We have freedom from the fear of rejection, for we know that no matter what we do, intentional or unintentional, we are always in union with God. Because of this we come boldly before His throne, based on Christ and His finished work. We are eternally accepted by God, even if the world rejects us – for our past mistakes, for our present standing, and/or for fear of our further existence.

We have freedom from the fear of pain, as much as we have freedom from the complacency which may come with finite pleasures; for we know that the circumstances we are in are nothing compared to the eternal glory we possess with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We have freedom from the fear of death itself, for we know that even this will not separate us from the love of God!

Let’s go even further here. We have freedom from fear of losing the presence of God. Why? Simply because we know and appreciate that our standing with God is dependent on Christ and His finished work, and not according to our internal struggles and external circumstances.

We have freedom from fear of doing the ‘wrong’ thing or making a decision that is ‘not right enough’, because we know that (1) Christ is with us 100% no matter what we decide, faithfully finishing the work He began in us, constantly transforming us by the renewal of our mind, and that (2) even in our unintentional mistakes, Christ is further faithful to make all these things work together for our good.

In our perceived successes and proclaimed failures, we are always in union with God.

Regarding our ‘intentional’ sins (because all sin is intentional – you never sin by accident), we are lovingly reminded to appreciate Christ; through His finished work we have been made dead to sin and alive to righteousness, no matter what. With that said, we are set free from ever being ‘beyond salvation’, as if we could out-sin the infinite love which has been lavished unto us; No, I believe it’s either you’re in salvation or not. You’re either in Christ or not. It’s either you believe and Christ is effectively working in, with and through you in the most intimate and personal manner, or you have utterly and absolutely rejected Life, who is Christ.

Oh, to know that my salvation is not just a condition, not just a lesson, not just a possession! Oh, to know that my Life is literally Christ alive in me! For by Christ, fear is no longer of me and foreign to me.

Because of Christ, we are totally free from fear!

Freedom To Love

When we go beyond just understanding Christ, and when we allow the grace of God to teach us, to stand under Christ, we are naturally set free from the bondage of fear. When we appreciate Christ this way, we are actually appreciating perfect love, and perfect love casts out all fear.

So now, in perfect love, my direction is firmly established because I am alive in Christ! This solid and absolute union will take much more than a lifetime for me to experience and enjoy, to express and to share beyond my own efforts. In Christ, we are set free FROM fear, but on the other hand, we are also set free TO perfect love. Consider this a parallel, a perspective which allows us to appreciate how we are dead to sin, and alive to righteousness.

Under the New Covenant, we see a New Commandment given to us, mentioned more than once in the New Testament. Christ definitely nailed it when He summarized the Law, the essence of the Old Covenant, into two commandments: (1) Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your mind, and with all your strength, and (2) love your neighbor as you love yourself.

The new Commandment says (1) to believe in the name of God’s Son, Jesus Christ, and (2) to love one another. When we believe in the name of Christ, we are literally recognizing who He is and what He has done: Through Christ, we see how (1) God loves us with all His heart, with all His mind, and with all His strength, and therefore, (2) we can love others as He loves us.

God is love – true, unconditional, perfect Love – which sets us (1) free from fear that He is angry and disappointed at us, and (2) free to love others just as unconditionally.

This perfect love is the power and motivation that has us moving forward, free to think of others because God has us completely covered. Doesn’t this give you a new perspective to walking by faith and not by sight? Walking by sight has us crawling on the shaky foundation established by our senses and feelings alone. Walking by faith has us leaping and bounding from an eternal Foundation, from an immovable Rock on which we stand, despite what our senses and feelings dictate.

Perfect love has us moving without unnecessary hesitation, knowing that even if the worst does happen, we will never be abandoned by Christ.

Be Fully Free!

The Law which came through Moses was satisfied at the cross. Christ is the end of the Law, indeed – however, we continue to uphold two new Commandments, birthed and confirmed on the other side of the empty tomb. Again, these are (1) that we believe in Christ, whom God has sent, and (2) that we love one another as He loves us. From the perspective of perfect love and fear, we see these Commandments fulfilled

First, we believe in Christ by living without fear, knowing that nothing that we do and nothing that others do to us would separate us from our loving Father. We live without fear of death and pain. All these – pain and death, health and wealth, sickness and poverty – are finite and therefore inferior to Christ, who is alive, in us, forever.

Second, in Christ, we live in perfect love. We live forever lavished in an infinite and everlasting love, once impossible to reach, and by Christ, so freely given to one and all, despite each and every one sinful to the core. God demonstrates timeless love unencumbered by borders by loving each and every one of us as we are all His favorites – what a reckless, scandalous love, indeed!

Because of Christ, we are totally free from fear and absolutely free to love!

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