Home Small Group Leaders Articles for Small Group Leaders Living Under the Law and Looking Foolish

Living Under the Law and Looking Foolish

looking foolish

Thank you very much, but I really don’t need any help looking foolish. I mastered the skill of looking foolish long ago and continue to refine it with each and every opportunity.

Just the other day, I put knee pads on and was down on the floor building something for my wife, Mary Ann. Without any help from anyone, I managed to fall off my knees and onto the floor. Let me repeat – I fell off my knees. The fall wasn’t far, but I did fall off my knees and landed on the floor.

No one ran up and pushed me over. The dog didn’t leap up and knock me down. There was no sudden gust of wind. There wasn’t even an earthquake. All it took was me, and I fell off my knees and onto my butt. Looking foolish. Clever, huh?

For all who rely on the works of the law are under a curse, as it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.” Clearly no one who relies on the law is justified before God, because “the righteous will live by faith.” The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, it says, “The person who does these things will live by them.” Galatians 3:10-12

People always, always, always do things that they think will benefit them. Even when they do something unspeakable to themselves, they ultimately think they’re doing something that will help them.

Living Under the Law and Looking Foolish

As Paul describes these people, they decided to move from God’s free forgiveness and grace and put themselves under a whole lot of rules and regulations. They thought it was a good idea. After all, everything in life takes work, so why not working to be loved by God. But, when they decided to give obeying laws a try, they really didn’t help themselves. Just the opposite, they hurt themselves. Or to quote Paul, they put themselves under a curse. They moved away from God’s fully paid love and blessing and towards having to do it all themselves.

They had been in the land of God’s forgiveness and moved into a country where the only thing they could do was to break God’s laws. That’s what you do to yourself when you decide to try and make God love you for what you do.

You take God down from being a loving heavenly Father and make him into a boss. You only stay employed if you do what the boss says. There is no unconditional acceptance or love. Only deadlines, task lists. Do this by this date or there will consequences.

Bosses are never satisfied. You might have worked hard to achieve some big project. You might even have received an “atta-boy” in the form of an email, or even a debit card for Starbucks. But then you move onto the next project, the next thing to do, and you start all over again.