For years there has been a debate about how the grace and faith of the New Testament competes, or at least translates into some sort of compatibility, with the law from the Old Testament. The God of the Law seems to be different from the God of the New Testament. But that is so not true—the same God reigns. In the Old Testament we looked forward to the cross of Christ, and now in the time of the New Covenant we look back into what was done on Calvary and it makes an incredible imprint on our lives.
In Galatians 3:5 it says, “Does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you by observing the law, or by believing what you have heard?” That, in my opinion, is the hang up with a lot of people. They see God as a rule maker and the Christian life as a mandate to live under all those rules and do everything right. Does God work miracles? Does God speak to those kinds of people? The answer is yes, but he also corrects them by saying, “I have given you a Spirit that allows you to live in freedom, riches, and the power of Christ.” Freedom does not come from following a bunch of rules, it comes from having a relationship with the Holy Spirit and the ability to see the work of God in front of your life.
It seems to me that it's a lot easier to define yourself by what you're not, by what you’re lacking, than it is to define yourself by what you have. And what we have in Christ Jesus is an amazing ability to gather and incorporate the work of God, His riches, His power, and His Spirit into our lives in amazing ways. We do that by what we’ve heard in the New Testament, when Jesus said, “Come and I will make you fishers of men.” He calls people to Himself so that He may find a residence in people's lives and then He speaks to them.
So, my friends, what are you hearing? Are you hearing that Christianity is rules and regulations? Or are you hearing that there’s a Spirit inside you who allows you to understand that God is freedom? Not the freedom to sin or to be disruptive, but freedom to live life in a way that's abundant, in a way that's amazing. That's what God calls us to.