God has better

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Sin is no longer your master.
— Romans 6:14

Imagine a slave who served a cruel master for many years suddenly finding herself free.

One day she passes her old owner on the street and her blood runs cold as she hears the familiar roar, “What are you doing?! Get back here!”

Her breath quickens, her legs tremble and her resolve crumbles as she begins to believe the lie that she must be obedient to his call.

Then she remembers the truth - she is no longer a slave.

As she turns around she squares her shoulders, looks her old master in the eye and replies, “You have no power over me. You have no right to demand anything of me and I will never need anything you have to offer me. I am free.”

We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin.
— Romans 6:6

Today, you will already have met your old master a dozen times, and at every encounter you will have made a decision. You will have acknowledged the illusion of power as a lie and walked away, or you will have embraced it as truth. But how can you choose to run back into those abusive arms when Jesus paid for your freedom from them with His life? Why would you dive back into a dirty puddle when you know that God has already given you an infinite ocean of fulfilment? Regardless, you do. And so do I.

We need to remember who we are.

My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me.
— Galatians 2:20

My old self has been crucified with Christ. I am no longer the person over whom sin has power. That person is dead and buried to the mastery of sin. If I am dead to it, I do not need to obey it. I am not a slave to it and it shall not be my master - I am now a servant of Christ. When Jesus brought us into union with himself, He broke our union with sin. Although He shattered its enslaving power, it still seeks to exert its demands. But because of three nails that stripped the life from the King of Heaven on a cross, we are free from the inevitability of saying yes to sin.

God bought you with a high price.
— 1 Corinthians 6:20

It’s not even as if we’re missing out by rejecting the fleeting, cursed pleasures on offer. They are distorted perversions of joys that we already have in Christ. So how do we expose the lie and grasp the true freedom of our new identities? For me, there are three words that have transformed my Christian life.

God has better.

It is a mantra that evaporates the mirage of temptation and silences the seedy seductions of the world. So when we hear the old call we can respond by squaring our shoulders, looking the source in the eye and saying, “You have no power over me. You have no right to demand anything of me and I will never need anything you have to offer me. I am free and God has better.

Indulge in gossip.
God has better.

Enjoy drunkenness.
God has better.

Bow to lust.
God has better.

Forget your identity.
God has better.

God offers deep, lasting, purposeful fulfilment. He offers ultimate contentment that’s unaffected by whatever storms might rage around us. He offers life in its fullness.

Our old masters won’t always bellow at us. Sometimes they put their arms around us and whisper promises in our ears. They offer us indulgent pleasures and convincing assurances. But whether they coat their lies with honey or thunder them with spittle-flecked rage, our response can be the same.

God has better.

This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
— 2 Corinthians 5:17
 
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