“For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything, but faith working through love.” (Galatians 5:6 NASB)
“In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” (1 John 4:10 NASB)
I’m an achiever. I thrive on strategic projects, overcoming obstacles and accomplishment. Basically, I like to do things and get things done. But because I love to do things so much, I often miss opportunities to sit and rest in the knowledge of who I am in Christ. And every time I realize these missed opportunities I feel less and less like a loving person because it affects what I do. That’s why I love the fact that Paul writes about faith working through love in Galatians 5:6. This faith is an often-misunderstood concept in today’s busy culture.
John Piper puts it this way. “Works wants the thrill of feeling itself overcome an obstacle. Faith wants the thrill of feeling God overcome the obstacle.” Faith is what justifies us. It’s what saves us. It makes us right with God. This is what makes the gospel so unique. Every other religion in the world teaches that man must earn his way or prove himself somehow to be considered a member of the sect. But being a follower of Christ is unique in the fact that God accomplished everything that needed to be accomplished for us to be saved. That saving faith that we have in Jesus and what He has done is so beautiful because it actually produces love. Piper adds, “Being a loving person is absolutely essential to being saved, because the faith which saves by its very essence works through love.” So as faith pushes out guilt, fear, greed and selfishness, it frees us for love and gives us the courage to experience God’s power through the very acts of love that we do.
Take a moment and consider the wonderful grace, mercy and love of God. Think about how much love He has for you on the cross. Ask God to help you increase your faith in Him and rely less on works as a means of earning something or proving yourself. Consider responding in worship by playing/singing a few songs of praise.
Thank you, Jesus, for loving me so much that You gave Your life for me. Help me to trust in You in times when I lean towards trusting myself instead. Remind me of the beauty of the gospel when I forget. Show me how I can love others today. Free me from myself so that I can be the loving person that You want me to be. In Jesus’ name I pray; amen.