Redemption is what makes Christianity different, it’s what makes Christians different. Or – it’s supposed to.
When you are redeemed, what went before your redemption is cleaned. Your former identity is wiped clean. You are made new. No more holding on to the identity of who you once were.
People do two things that aren’t redemption instead of accepting the redemption offered.
- They make excuse. “Because I was a purple unicorn, it was really okay that I ate all the chihuahuas on that block. Anyway chihuahuas are super annoying.” Excusing away what you’ve done doesn’t do any good – it makes it so it’s easier to do wrong things more often, and more easily. There’s always an excuse!
- They self-identify with the wrong thing, and make it their world. “I stole a candy bar from a vending machine when I was six. I am a thief.” And then act like a thief for the rest of their lives – compiling the problem rather than dealing with it.
What Christians are supposed to do sounds more like, “I ate all the chihuahuas, and while chihuahuas are super annoying, it was absolutely wrong. I’m staying away from tasty dogs from here on out – and those drugs that made me think that I was a purple unicorn. Thank you, Lord Jesus, for bearing my sins.” We walk in freedom.
This freedom should leave us overjoyed and really annoyingly happy. It’s SUPPOSED TO. But mostly it freaks us out that we’re redeemed and the wrong things that we’ve done over our lifetimes have been covered, so instead we do some combination of making excuses and identifying ourselves with shame or covering over the evil. (Hypocrisy – source).
This shouldn’t be. We’re supposed to live free, leave our sins nailed to the cross, and get on with our lives to the glory of the God who chose to die for us.
No good comes of lying about what we did, covering it over, or making it our identity. Freedom comes from knowing the truth and letting Him set you free.
Christians are free. Let’s hold onto that. (And make sure the non-Christians know that the invitation to this freedom is open!)