It’s About New Wineskins, Not Old Foreskins
“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Mark my words! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all. Again I declare to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law. You who are trying to be justified by law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. But by faith we eagerly await through the Spirit the righteousness for which we hope. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.” Galatians 5: 1-6
Jesus said: “Neither do men pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst, and the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.” Matthew 9: 17
It seems that there will always be people living under the law and trying to place others under it too. To do so denies the message of grace and the entire New Covenant. In Jesus we are set free from the law of sin and death and reborn into His wonderful Kingdom of love, grace and light. To choose law instead of grace places one under a yoke of slavery and bondage to the written code that brings death in this life.
Furthermore, if we follow any portion of the law we are obligated to obey the whole law and Christ becomes worthless to us. Those who seek to be justified by observing the law are separated from Christ’s grace. Jesus still loves them, but the law places a wall between them and Christ that cannot be scaled by mere human endeavor or obedience to the law. The only way to grace, truth, and life is through a relationship with Jesus, and one cannot serve both Christ and the law simultaneously. Once again the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
However, a simple turning away from the law and towards Christ again will restore our relationship with Him and place us firmly within His hands of Grace and mercy once more. It is all about faith and never observance of the law. Jesus waits patiently for us to turn His way and never gives up on us. No matter what we do, His face is continually turned towards us and He is quick to forgive.
In the end the only thing that really matters is faith expressing itself through love. The Lord has faith in us and He expressed His love by going to the cross. The big question is….will we deny ourselves, take up our very own cross and follow Him daily? You say you have faith? Prove it by extending love and grace to others along the way. Purposely walk away from the law and the judgment it places on everyone, and instead open your heart to Him and allow His great love and grace to flow forth through you to both the washed and unwashed masses. Jesus has filled our lives, our new wineskins, with the priceless new wine of His Spirit. Drink deeply from His fountain of life and allow Him to pour you out for the sake of others each and every day.
Kirk Out !