When we were born, we lived away from God, against him, and against our design. The internal combustion engine is designed to have optimal functionality, if it operates with certain parameters, and given certain fuels. The human body is designed to have optimal functionality, if it operates with certain parameters, and fed certain fuels. The human spirit is designed to have optimal functionality, if it operates with certain parameters, and fed certain fuels.
The main fuel our spirits need is a connection, a link, or a relationship with the Father of All. The parameters are described in Scripture.
Because of sin (life outside of the parameters) we began our lives with no connection, or relationship with the Father. But God works in our world, and on our behalf, to draw us to him, and into this relationship.
When we chose to come to him, when we begin this relationship, he begins to teach us how to return to living as designed, within the parameters. However, the main thrust of many people’s approach to God is: do this, don’t do this. People compile lists of “this’s.” They develop a law mentality. They develop a religious mentality.
Religion is man acting in ways that attempt to achieve God’s approval of man. Christianity is God acting in ways that achieve God’s approval of man.
God told Israel, after leaving Egypt, where it was saturated with laws and religion, that if they obeyed his Law, they would receive his approval. Israel demonstrated, over and over, that it is impossible for people to keep God’s law. Scripture says, over and over, it is impossible for people to keep God’s Law. Scripture also says, over and over, that Jesus came into the world to achieve God’s approval of us, for us.
We cannot achieve God’s approval, so we gave our allegiance to Jesus, and he gained God’s approval for us. Then, people create a new and different set of laws to continue in God’s approval, and to re-create God’s design in us. If we cannot keep the Law God gave us, what makes us think we can keep the law we give ourselves?
God is vitally concerned with how we live our lives. God is vitally concerned with re-creating his design in us. But if we can’t keep the Law, or any law, maybe God does not expect us to base our lives on a list of do’s and don’ts.
When we gave Jesus our allegiance, he gave a new identity. He declared who we are. Scripture says we are dead to the Law, but alive to Christ. Maybe, we should base our lives, not on lists of expected behavior, but on living in agreement with our new identity? Maybe, we should focus our hearts, not on something that God has declared to be dead, but on something God has declared to be new, and true?