DAILY VIDEO DEVOTIONAL
After I spoke several years ago to a group of Christian leaders, a man said to me, “I really disagree with you. I don’t think that God’s law is good. That’s what brings condemnation to our lives.”
I quickly realized he had an improper understanding of God’s law. Because God is good, everything that God gives to man is good. That’s a part of His nature. He gave His law for our good. He created us. Therefore, He knows how we ought to live. He knows our structure, our frame. When He gave His law, it was to instruct us in a happy, healthy life. When He told the Jews not to eat pork, it wasn’t because He was looking for a reason to hit them over the head if they disobeyed. He gave those instructions because He had created everything that exists. He knew what would produce disease and death, and what would cause life and health. The law of God is good and enriches our lives.
But the Scripture teaches us that we are to live under the rule of the Holy Spirit rather than under the letter of the law. Many religious leaders didn’t understand this during the time of Christ. The same is true today. Religious leaders wanted to stone Him because He healed people on the Sabbath. Jesus told them that the Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath. He understood the purpose and intent of the law. The religious leaders knew only the letter of the law. Those who follow only the letter of the law and ignore its spirit fall into the trap of legalism. And legalism ultimately produces defeat.
One former President of the United States admitted to having an improper sexual relationship, but instructed his lawyers to split legal hairs about the definition of a “sexual relationship.” Such legalism brought condemnation from even the members of his own political party. He was arguing the letter of the law, but ignoring the its spirit.
Many Christians have done the same thing. But legalism always leads to defeat. That’s why the Bible instructs us to live by the power of the Holy Spirit. When we live by the Spirit, we are not under the rule of the law. But that doesn’t mean we should ignore or violate the law. It simply means that we fulfill the law’s deep purposes. In other words, we do the will of God from the depths of our hearts.
A person who lives under the rule of the Holy Spirit is truly free. This person is not only faithful to his spouse, but he’s free from the lusts that might lure him into immorality. That’s true victory — one that’s in our heart and that works its way into our everyday lives. But when someone tries to live by the letter of the law, he’s on a one-way street to defeat.
A victorious Christian has learned to yield his life to the rule of the Holy Spirit. He is not in bondage to legalistic definitions. He’s free to be all God intends him to be. He fulfills much more than the letter of the law. A victorious Christian fulfills the spirit and intent of the law — because his obedience is an outflow of the indwelling Holy Spirit. When we live by the power of the Holy Spirit, the law no longer is an issue because we will accomplish God’s ultimate purpose in our lives. Victory over legalism flows from following the leadership of the Holy Spirit.
Galatians : Chapter 3
1) You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. 2) I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by believing what you heard? 3) Are you so foolish? After beginning by means of the Spirit, are you now trying to finish by means of the flesh?[a] 4) Have you experienced[b] so much in vain—if it really was in vain? 5) So again I ask, does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you by the works of the law, or by your believing what you heard? 6) So also Abraham “believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”[c] 7) Understand, then, that those who have faith are children of Abraham. 8) Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed through you.”[d] 9) So those who rely on faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.
Book of the Month
Sammy Tippit told his fiancée, “I can’t promise we’ll be rich, but life won’t be boring.”
Sammy had no idea what an understatement that would become. Beginning in the bars of Baton Rouge and the nightclubs of Chicago, Tippit has shared the news of life-changing faith in Christ all over the world – including in the middle of a revolution in Romania, the aftermath of genocide in Rwanda, and war in Burundi and the Congo.
Sammy’s lifelong adventure has come at a great price. He’s been cursed, threatened, arrested, deported, and blacklisted. He’s also been personally broken, ravaged with illness, and devastated by grief.
Yet he continues to preach to in stadiums, in open fields, and via satellite technology to hundreds of thousands around the globe. For all other books…
About Sammy Tippit Ministries
STM has been providing inspiration and help around the world for nearly 50 years. Sammy Tippit, founder and president, is a world renowned counselor, teacher and evangelist with experience serving and helping people in over 80 countries. Sammy provides materials that help people tackle a broad array of social, societal, psychological and spiritual issues. He is particularly passionate about making materials accessible to other countries around the world. Sammy is married to Debara “Tex” Tippit, and they have two children and five grandchildren.
Sammy Tippit Ministries is a registered 501c3 non-profit organization.
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