Isaiah 28:14-29:14; Galatians 3:23-4:20; Psalms 62:9-12; Proverbs 16:21-23
NT: “For those of you who were baptized into Christ have been clothed with Christ. There is no Jew or Greek, slave or free, male and female; since you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, heirs according to the promise… When the time came to completion, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba, Father!” So you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then God has made you an heir. But in the past, since you didn’t know God, you were enslaved to things that by nature are not gods. But now, since you know God, or rather have become known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elements? Do you want to be enslaved to them all over again?” (Galatians 3:27-29; 4:4-9 CSB)
What a powerful portion of scripture! As I have written before, Jesus Christ is the great equalizer. We talk a lot about equality, but the way that most people try to achieve equality doesn’t work. Forced or mandated equality doesn’t change the attitudes of the heart. The only way to receive from-the-inside-out equality is through faith in Christ. When we come to faith in Christ and are baptized into Christ by the Holy Spirit, we become clothed with Christ. Filling us from the inside and covering us on the outside is Christ. Where we came from, what race we are, what gender we are, what social status we belong to – it doesn’t matter, for we are all filled with and clothed in Christ. Through faith in Christ we are all one and given equal value in the kingdom of God.
Before we came to faith in Christ, we were all enslaved to sin and trapped under the requirements of the law. God sent His Son to be born under the law so that He could fulfill the law and redeem us from sin. When we come to faith in Him and are redeemed from sin, we are adopted as sons and daughters of God. Because we are blood-bought children of God, God fills us with the Spirit of His Son so that we can know and experience God as our Dear Father. Because we are no longer slaves, but sons… because we are filled with the Spirit of Christ and clothed with Christ, we are made joint heirs with Christ to all of God’s Kingdom. All who are in Christ are heirs equally – there are no second-class citizens… there are no unprivileged, under-privileged, or overly privileged. We are all one and of equal value in Christ.
Considering all that we have been given through faith in Christ, Paul asked the question, “Why would you ever go back? Why would you ever give up all that you have received by faith to go back to being enslaved to the things of earth and burdened by striving to earn your own righteousness?” That same question is posed to us. Are you living in all that Christ has done for you, or are you choosing to live in some level of slavery?
Prayer: Lord, what a wonderful salvation You have provided for me! What honor and privilege You have given me, along with all others who are in Christ, simply through faith in You. Help me to fully live out who I am in You, and never go back to the trappings and enslavement of the world. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.