We can have the scriptural truth and the corresponding mental picture to help bring the indwelling of Christ to our minds. And all the while, we’re fighting against the counterfeit, shadow narrative that runs alongside our souls, assaulting us with the world’s and Satan’s lies. Instead of confidence in Christ’s finished work that declares our righteousness, the counterfeit is working harder to somehow earn God’s favor.
In other words, we’re tempted to conform or correct our conduct to be good, meeting all the rules and standards in order to change God’s opinion of us and put us in the position of blessing. This is not the gospel. People guarded by Christ don’t conform or change their conduct first; they rather catapult their helpless, broken, dirty selves with confidence into God’s presence, ask his forgiveness, and receive God’s unlimited love, blessing, and favor because of Christ’s righteousness applied to them. We are not condemned, not now and not ever.
Heather Holleman is the author of Guarded by Christ. She is a speaker, writer, and faculty member of Penn State's English Department. Adapted from Guarded by Christ: Knowing the God Who Rescues and Keeps Us by Heather Holleman © 2016. Used by permission. www.MoodyPublishers.com.