Without an understanding of how God’s unearned, undeserved favor works for us today, the Bible is simply a book of empty words. In order to appreciate the significance of what is available to us, we need to know how radically life changed from the old covenant of the law to the new covenant of grace. Before the cross, mankind had to work hard to avoid God’s punishment and wrath; after the cross, we’re now free to enjoy the fruits of His goodwill and mercy. It all comes down to eagerly studying the Word of truth so that we can correctly analyze it and present ourselves to God with no shame.
Most of us grew up living under the Law of Moses without even knowing it. We were taught to follow the Ten Commandments to please God; that’s a lot of work, and we most likely remember the deep-seated guilt and shame we felt when we missed the mark. Jesus hates shame so much that He went to the cross to take it away from us. He did this so that everyone who believes in Him shall not be put to shame.
Not only did Jesus take away all the negative emotions the law triggered, but He replaced them with good things that His blood made available to us. This includes things like forgiveness for our past and unconditional acceptance, no matter what we do. Being free from the pressures and expectations of having to do everything right gives us a new perspective on life. When we’re spiritually tired and burned out on religion, spending time with Him teaches us the unforced rhythms of grace.
The law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. We no longer have to strive to please God; if we accept His Son, He’s already pleased with us. The freedom that Christ’s death and resurrection brought us makes life worth celebrating.
God, Jesus bled and died so that we wouldn’t be forced to accept the burdens that the people had to struggle with before the cross. Because of what Christ did, we’re now free to live as Your forgiven, accepted people. Thank You. In Jesus’ name, amen.
2 Timothy 2:15, AMPC
Matthew 11:28-30, MSG