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August 15, 2016

Mythology tells of a Greek king named Sisyphus who angered the gods. His cruelty and cunning caused Zeus to sentence him to an eternity of punishment. Sisyphus was forever condemned to push a boulder up a hill. Whenever he managed to reach the top the boulder would roll back down and he would have to push it back up again. Trying to become righteous by keeping the law is like Sisyphus pushing a boulder up hill. It is an impossible task. The self righteous life is one doomed to constant turmoil. It is a life of hopelessness and perpetual failure. There is no gospel more cruel than the one that promises eternal life by your own works and obedience. This wicked gospel promises freedom, it offers hope of success, it assures the person of true freedom all while wrapping him in eternal chains. The gospel of works, of obedience, of merit, of “I think I’m good enough” is a fraud that terrorizes the soul.

The gospel of Jesus Christ is very different. The gospel brings liberty. The gospel frees from the slavery of the impossible. The gospel of Jesus does not offer false promises about your ability and goodness. The gospel of Jesus convicts of sin. The gospel of Jesus persuades of your own inability. Only when you first realize your guilt and the impossibility of making yourself right with God can you be saved. The gospel of Jesus frees from the effort to always be keeping the law. The gospel of Jesus frees from the slavery of trying to perform the impossible. The gospel is the good news of Jesus’ completed work. The gospel of Jesus gives liberty. The gospel is the promise of righteousness given by God, kept by God and eternally perfected by God. This freedom from the bondage of saving oneself is the liberty of grace and the freedom of Jesus Christ.

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