12 So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty. 13 For judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment. - James 2:12-13
These verses cause confusion for some believers. If Jesus died for our sins, and we are forgiven, I thought we were exempt from judgment? So, what does it mean to be judged by the law of liberty?
If we have accepted Jesus Christ as our Savior, then we are saved from God’s eternal wrath and punishment. We will not face His eternal judgment and have been promised a place in heaven with Him. Christ bore the punishment for our sins and we can stand a forgiven people in front of God.
However, we know from scripture that we still will stand before God in judgment of our lives. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil. - 2 Corinthians 5:10. Our sins have been forgiven by Christ, but our actions as believers will still be judged. The things we have done to glorify Christ will be rewarded, but we will still need to answer for those things we have done out of selfish motives.
James says here “So speak and so act” as a way to encompass our whole conduct. Everything we do will be judged by the law of liberty. Our words and our actions - it is not good enough to be merely speakers of the Word, we must follow through in our actions.
I love the reference in these verse to the law of liberty because they bring to mind the true freedom we find when we surrender to God’s laws. So many in this world challenge God’s laws as restrictive, and at first glance, I suppose they may seem that way. But when you’ve surrendered your life to the perfect law of God, and you work to apply ALL aspects of His law to your life, what you do find is a victory and a freedom that you can only find in Him. It’s a liberty from the way of thinking the world keeps you shackled to, that you don’t even understand until obedience to His law breaks those chains.
When we stand before God, we will receive mercy in the same measure we hand it out. Pause and think about that. If you claim to know Christ, but you do not show mercy to others in all that you do, your profession of faith is worthless. Showing mercy to others demonstrates that you understand the mercy He has so graciously given to you.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗
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