There are two kinds of bad news Christians… those who, to quote an oldie, ‘They’re so heavenly minded that they are no earthly use!’
You know the kind…they give the impression that Jesus spends all day with them, that unless you constantly meditate on the Word and pray ‘all the time’ you won’t make it! Everything must be spiritual!
They put heavies on you and forbid you to relax, read a novel, watch TV or a movie, or simply have fun. They’re a bad influence on others who are trying to find a meaningful and fulfilling relationship with a caring father-figure God who has given the gift of an adventurous life.
The other kind is those who blame the devil on everything. Okay…Satan does get in the way at times, he does come against Christians and the church, especially when we are upsetting his devious plans, but often as not these folk are lost in a self-induced or satanic deception that gives glory to the devil whereas they should be turning fully to Jesus and allowing him to bring them through whatever the challenge, problem or tragedy may be.
You know that kind too… they see the devil in everything! ‘Don’t wear that brooch – it symbolises Satan.’ ‘Oh you can’t have that colour – it a devil colour.’ ‘The devil gave a hard time this week’ when all the while it was their own fault that caused the heartache, headache or problem.
The first kind constantly repeats the old Pharisee mistake of being overtly ‘religious.’ Worse still, they want to bind everyone else under ‘law’ along with themselves.’ In outworking, they would stop you from enjoying your relationship with the Lord. Jesus doesn’t want us being spiritual freaks! Rather he wants us to relax and enjoy life to the full.
What sort of god wouldn’t rejoice in our enjoyment in life? A miserable one! But no, our God is one of joy and laughter who delights when he sees his kids relaxing, being themselves and enjoying life.
Of course, we are meant to live a wholesome life, not yielding to the things of the flesh. He’s given us his Holy Spirit to help us and to keep us right – as we read and listen to his instructions. But he doesn’t want us being spiritual weirdos or little robots! Some Christians need to cut loose, to loosen up and get real!
In the first case, ‘Christians under law’ have a wrong picture of God…they only see him as a heavy-handed God who deals in wrath. Paul said the letter of the law kills but the Spirit gives life. That we’re under a covenant of life through the Eternal Spirit (2 Cor.3: 6,11).
God’s the God of love who quickly forgives and wants us to live free from very human–originated bondage and religious law. To live in the freedom of what his Word really says. After all, Jesus did state that he had come to set us free and to give us life more abundantly (Joh. 8:36, 10:10). Let’s believe it and live in it. And not force bondages on others.