Friday 23 March 2012

When Behaviour Isn't About Rules - Joel Brueseke

God has created us with such a great deal of value. His love, value and acceptance of us is magnificent! He has bestowed upon us great dignity and worth. Psalm 8 says that "He has crowned us with glory and honor." Other scriptures show how God has made us holy and righteous. He has seated us with Him in heavenly places. He has placed an astounding value on us! All of this has nothing to do with our behavior. It's simply how God has fashioned us, through His love and grace. Psalm 8 also says that He has made us a little lower than Elohim. That is, a little lower than Himself! A little lower than God is a very, very, very high place to be!

We are worth a lot. We are highly valuable creations. We have been created by God with much integrity, much grandeur, much dignity, much worth, majesty, significance, beauty, prestige, renown, glory, honor, nobility. We are royalty - children of the King of kings and Lord of lords!

With all of this in mind, along with the good news of the gospel of God's awesome grace, our behavior isn't so much a matter of right and wrong, but it's more a matter of living as the creatures of glory and honor that we have been created to be! When we engage in ungodly behavior, such as sexual immorality, covetousness, deceit, gossip or whatever, it's not that we're condemned or judged or looked down upon by God, but rather it's that we're living below the true worth and value and glory and honor that God has lovingly and masterfully created us with.

Obviously none of us consistently lives as the holy, righteous, beautiful, astounding creatures that God has made us to be, so we have no right to judge one another.  We only judge ourselves when we judge others. But the point is that when we intentionally decide to live in these ways, we are intentionally degrading the beautiful, majestic, noble, prestigious creations that God has made us to be. We are deeming ourselves as worth-less. That is, we are esteeming ourselves as being worth far less than the magnificent value and glory and honor that God Himself has created us with!  We unfortunately view ourselves as so much lower than how God views us,  and when we do, we act accordingly. We treat ourselves - and others -  according to this low view that we have.

We all fall short in the things we do, and so this isn't about judgment and condemnation. This is about esteeming ourselves as the honorable and noble creations that God has made us to be, and reminding ourselves of this as often as we can so we can rise above the mediocrity of living beneath the reality of who we truly are.  The foundation of who we are - of all that God has truly made us to be, by His grace and not by our deeds - is vitally important to know and understand. It takes away the "law" and "rules" aspect out of behavior and it makes it about the dignity and worth that God Himself esteems us with.

When we realize more and more the true glory and honor with which God Himself has lovingly and splendorously crowned us, we will naturally want to live accordingly - treating ourselves and others with honor and glory, dignity and worth - and we will find the power to do so by God's grace.
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