Monday, April 4, 2011
what I'm living for
For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised.
2 Corinthians 5:14-15
Christianity is about a new and a different life. And it has radical consequences. There is a change. It is all good, but it puts the Christian in a different lifestyle than the non-Christian. And you can't really want to be a Christian and then not want to be controlled by the love of Christ. That is the implicit principle in this teaching.
The love of Christ controls us. It is the moving power behind all that we do and who we are as Christians. It is demonstrated at one unique focal point: Jesus' sacrificial death that atoned for our sin. From there it follows that His resurrection backs up everything that His death accomplished. And in Christ's death, the death my sins deserve is taken away. When I trust this, it fundamentally changes who I am in relationship with God. It is true that my sin issues are dealt with. But it is not just a guilt eraser. It changes my life. There is a new direction in Christ.
The love of Christ sets this new direction under His terms and not my own. I am no longer to live my life on my own terms. I get a better set of directives and a change of ownership. I was the slave of sin. Now I am the slave of Christ. I no longer live for myself. I now live for my Savior Who died and rose again for me. It is truly a new life.
That is why Paul says that every Christian who truly comes to accept and follow Christ in this way is a "new creation" (2 Corinthians 5:17). Old things associated with an old kind of life are gone. A new life is before us in Christ. And this new creation under new ownership gives us a new responsibility: we represent Jesus to the world around us (2 Corinthians 5:20-21). So as a Christian, in every category, I am living for Jesus. He creates in me the capacity to do so. He lives with me to make it happen as I live for Him. It is what I'm living for!
- Prepare your minds for action.
1 Peter 1:13