Freedom in the Spirit
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit. (2 Corinthians 3:17, 18)
This is where the message of the new covenant starts to soar up and over everything else. This is where the new covenant does for us what none of us can do for ourselves. It sets us free. No more beating on ourselves to try to change or conform to our — or anyone else’s — idea of who we should be. We are being changed already. The change has begun, and all the elements necessary to complete that change are already in place. This is you and me, unveiled, with the Spirit of the Lord in us, and transformation happens as we constantly keep our eyes focused on Christ.
“Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” And just where is the Spirit of the Lord in the context of what Paul is discussing in these verses? In us. So, therefore, liberty is in us, too.
This is the best news ever. What does this liberty look like?
Freedom from having to be something we are not. No more trying to conform to what anyone, including the church, says we are supposed to be. This includes spoken and unspoken levels of conformity.
Freedom from having to produce righteousness on our own. Righteousness is, and has always been, out of our reach. There are none righteous; no, not one. The old covenant was made to be broken so we could be introduced to the new one. Things are going along as planned.
Freedom from the guilt and condemnation that comes when we can’t produce righteousness. Guilt and condemnation are attributes of the old covenant. They are the result of our failure to follow the law. They are not to be even in the vocabulary of a new covenant Christian.
Freedom from hiding. Hiding is the result of our inability to follow the law. Our failure forces us to hide it. All of these things — failure, guilt, condemnation, hiding —are all related to bondage to the law. Each one of these is like a heavy weight laid on us, one on top of the other, until our backs break under the load. The new covenant removes them all. Throws them all off. This is the liberty Paul is talking about here, and it is a complete and total liberty which comes from an entirely different orientation to life — a reorientation from having to change ourselves, to being changed by God.
Look to the Lord; stay open and vulnerable; stop striving; trust in His power to change you. This is the power, glory and liberty of the new covenant. Do you know it? I’ve known it for years, and never needed it like I do right now. This is why the new covenant is always new; it never gets old. If it’s old, it’s the wrong one.
“Oh how different life can be, when all the changes don’t depend on me.”
from “Ways and Means,” a song from “The New Covenant” musical, written by John Fischer, available free by clicking HERE.
Day 12 Challenge:
16 But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away.
The veil is over our minds, but the Lord is in our hearts.
17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
Freedom comes from this great fact: the one who is within us is God himself.
When you start looking at the One who is doing this in your life, the Lord Jesus, and beholding Him with all your veils taken away so you are not afraid to look at your own evil capacity, then a wonderful thing happens: 18 And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
You can finally be you, and you recognize God wants you to be you. You are already pleasing to Him. God’s basis of deliverance is to give you the gift of full acceptance and righteousness. You do not have to earn it at all, and your performance is not going to affect it. You already have it.
Take a minute and recognize for yourself how futile it is to try to be good, but how wonderful it is to realize that, by the gift of God, you already are good in His sight.
- What do you suppose is the “ever-increasing glory” in v. 18, and how does it manifest in you?
- What will result at last in love which fulfills the Law?
- Breathe in and then slowly breathe out and say, “The Lord Jesus Christ loves me. He wants me to be me. His gift of full acceptance and righteousness is given to me with no strings attached. He loves me!”
Thanks be to God who always leads us in His triumph!
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