Choices

Posted: February 16, 2015 in Uncategorized

Choices… We all make them. We choose what to wear, what to eat, where to go, and on and on. For the most part we make choices without even thinking about it, but then there are other choices that require more thought and judgment.

So what is choice, really? According to Merriam-Webster choice is defined as the act of picking or deciding between two or more possibilities.

Some examples include choosing which college to attend, whether or not to accept a particular job offer, or even whether to have chicken or fish, get up or go back to sleep, go out or stay in. More complex examples include choosing a lifestyle, a religious affiliation, or political position.

Most people regard having choices as a good thing, though a limited or restricted option of choices can be difficult and possibly lead to an unsatisfactory outcome. In contrast, unlimited choice can lead to confusion and uncertainty.

So how do choices look from a spiritual perspective? Here is the basic truth in a broad sense. Living by a corrupt system, in a corrupt world, leads to corrupt choices. So then it would stand to reason that if we dwell in the Kingdom of God, which we do as believers, then our choices would be good choices designed to build us up and strengthen us, right? The irony is we get to choose which system we live under to govern our choices.

In Joshua 24:15 God commands us to, “choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve.” It seems like a simple matter. It’s a choice – God’s system or the world’s system? We already know the mess we’ve made by our choices under the world’s system so it should be a simple matter to choose God’s system and have everything work out for good. And yet we seem to continually make the wrong choices.

The Apostle Paul summed it up very well in Romans 7:15 and 18-24 (NLT). “I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate. …And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t. I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it. I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. I love God’s law with all my heart. But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death?”

Sound familiar? You’ve probably had similar thoughts at one time or another. So here’s the good news. Paul goes on in verse 25 to answer his own question. “Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.”

I know that seems confusing. Isn’t he just repeating the obvious? In his mind he wants to obey God, but because of his sinful nature he is a slave to sin. The difference is in his recognition that in spite of his struggle with sinful choices, the answer is in Jesus Christ. And that’s who we are. As believers we are “in Jesus Christ.” 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Anyone who belongs to Christ is a new person. The past is forgotten, and everything is new.”  That’s why Paul continues in Romans 8 to explain that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Read it for yourself. I think you will find it encouraging and with the encouragement hope that your life can be different.

For now let me challenge you to rethink the choices you have been considering and even to change some of the choices you have already made in light of who you are in Christ. It won’t all come at once, but it’s a good first step. Then email us at info@fruitbearers.com and let us help you discover the freedom that Jesus has provided for all who are in Him.

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