CONGRATULATIONS, YOU HAVE FAILED!

There’s no life in the law. The only thing the law tells you is what you ought to do, but can’t do. It will never relinquish its demand that you ought to do it, because it’s a divine ought-to; God gave it to Moses. We’ll keep ourselves under that divine ought-to, and the condemnation and death it ministers (2 Corinthians 3), until we learn to live from the Person who dwells within us. Because there’s nothing in our flesh that wants to say, “I can’t do it. I can’t keep the law through my own effort.” Everything in our flesh says, “I want to try to do it, and with God’s help maybe I can do it.”

Like my friend Burt Rosenberg says, everything in that program is designed for futility, frustration, and failure. But they don’t tell you that up front, do they? When you sign up, no one makes this announcement:

WE’VE GOT A WONDERFUL PROGRAM HERE, THE END

RESULT OF WHICH WILL BE FUTILITY, FRUSTRATION, AND

FAILURE! WHEN YOU HAVE COMPLETED THE COURSE, WE

WILL GIVE YOU A DIPLOMA, SAYING:

“CONGRATULATIONS, YOU HAVE FAILED!”

I remember talking to a group and proclaiming, “We have succeeded! In what? In failing!” And everyone smiled. For we finally recognized that we had succeeded in what we were supposed to do, which was to fail. “Everyone is telling us that we failed in what we were supposed to succeed in. But the truth is we have succeeded in what we were supposed to fail in. Now, we can get on with it. We can get on with what is true life.”

We usually quote Galatians 2:20 apart from its context. It immediately follows Paul’s admonition to Peter concerning the law. When Paul said, “I have been crucified with Christ,” he was referring to his death to the law. Paul was saying, “The old me died on the cross with Christ, and when I died, I died to trying to keep the law. Trying to keep the law is living according to the flesh, with me and my efforts as my point of reference. I died to myself as my point of reference. Now, Christ in me is my point of reference. He is living His life through me.”

As believers, we no longer live under the law, looking to it to tell us what to do and not do, and then trying our best to do it. Instead, we live on the faith principle, the inner life principle, of who really is our life—Christ. We trust that He directs us, opens or closes doors for us, and speaks directly to us, giving us a message or whatever is needed for the occasion. We trust that He is living through us. We may not feel it at any given moment, but we live by faith that He is our life.

Taken from “The Rest of the Gospel” written by Dan Stone & David Gregory

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