Have you ever wondered why there are commands in the New Testament? This used to trouble me. If the good news is all about God’s free gift of forgiveness that we can never earn but only receive by faith, why do Jesus and Paul and John and the rest of them give us things to do? What’s the point, unless to earn forgiveness?
The problem is in our definition of salvation. If we equate salvation with forgiveness, biblical commands make no sense. If all there is to the gospel is the message our sins can be forgiven and we can go to heaven when we die, it makes very little sense to read the Bible at all, much less obey the commands.
But what if the commands aren’t there to make us measure up, but simply to help us reduce our inborn resistance to the life of God flowing through us?