God’s words in Scripture remind us of both his holiness and his holy standards for us. “The letter” — that is, legalism — kills. It leaves us afraid because of the deadly results of our sin. It leaves us full of shame when we rebel against the will of our Father in heaven. However, through Jesus’ death and resurrection, we are brought to a new covenant between God and his people. Filled with the Holy Spirit, each of us is transformed and empowered to be a new person, literally a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17). We are redeemed, saved by grace, and empowered by the Holy Spirit to find life and to live to honor and display the character and compassion of our Father (Romans 8:1-4). We are freed from fear and shame because the Spirit is the guarantee not just of our forgiveness but also of our cleansing (1 Corinthians 6:9-11) and our salvation (2 Corinthians 1:21-22; Ephesians 1:13-14).
O God, our confidence is in Christ, who died for our sins and who was raised for our righteousness and now has filled us and empowered us with the Holy Spirit. May our words, our thoughts, our hearts, and our lives show Jesus as we seek to share him with others. It is in his name, the Lord Jesus Christ, that we pray. Amen.