Foundational to our walk with Christ is our identity in Christ. Understanding who you are as a Christian will go a long way in helping you grow as a Christian.
In this Growing in Christ blog series I have been writing about the Biblical concept of being hidden in Christ and the benefits this brings to Christians. Today I want to write about another of the key benefits of being hidden in Christ and that is freedom.
One of the hit songs of the early 1990’s was a song called “Freedom 90” by now deceased musician George Micheal. He sings:
I won’t let you down, freedom
I will not give you up, freedom
Michael’s words, although grossly distorted, echo some truth. He is saying that the truth of being secure and finding identity in their relationship results in freedom. Ok .. this is the same principle at work in the Bible. In being hidden in Christ and the benefits this brings to Christians , you are free – truly and gloriously free.
Some people live with a controlling fear of what others think about them, caring more about earning the approval of their peers than the approval of God. This isn’t freedom. If I have this kind of relationship I am also working hard to be approved and when I get it, I feel more approved of and accepted. I have to work for love. This isn’t freedom but slavery. It also works the other way around. If I’m approaching human love like a contract – if I do this then you must love me – this keeps the other person also in bondage. The truth is that human love demands reciprocation – a contractual love that only gives by what it gets. It produces hard work and despair if the agreement isn’t kept.
However, God’s love is vastly different. Three verses collide to bring this truth to us:
but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses.
I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you
We love because he first loved us.
1 John 4:19
Fact 1: God loved you without you doing anything to deserve it.
Fact 2: Forgiveness of sins comes to us when we confess, repent and are made alive by God – hidden Christ.
Fact 2: This love doesn’t wear out of grow old – you area adopted by God into his family – totally secure in Him.
Fact 3: We love God back, not because we have to gain His approval (because we can’t), but because we have received this amazing love.
This is freedom.
Because of this love, you are freed from worrying about remaining in Gods good books, freed from worrying that God will someday reject you, freed from the pressure of trying to be good enough for Him.
Christian, you are free!