Verse 16 Only let us live up to what we have already attained.
Following his reminder to pray about places where there were differences of opinions, Paul reminds his readers that they have something to live up to.
Living up to what we have already attained may seem like a strange phrase. It is requiring of the present what was established in the past. Living up to something suggests that there is a level that is raised that needs to be gone after. And since it is already attained we know it isn’t a moving target.
Knowing it isn’t a moving target should ease our minds as we can be sure that it is attainable. More than that Paul says that we have already attained it. This solid object is our salvation. We can’t lose it, it is ours because Christ has attained it for us and that sealed it. Oh what comfort to know we can’t lose this precious gift!
So what does Paul mean when he says that we should live up to this gift? This isn’t a way of earning the prize of salvation, this is an understanding of what that prize is worth. This gift of salvation is costly and therefore so worthy of our dedication. It cost Christ His life, so why would we not give Him our lives?
By saying that we should live up to this standard, Paul is saying that we should live with a proper understanding of what His sacrifice means for us. If we look at Christ’s death on the cross as just an event in history that we hope benefits us, we will miss the true working of His work for us. He didn’t die to keep us where we are.
Christ’s plan for us is that we become more like Him. We should be so honored by and thankful for His sacrifice that we desire to live in a way that will bring Him honor and glory. We need to live in a way that points to who He is. The Sinless One deserves followers who are willing to turn from their sinful desires out of love for Him. This is how we live up to what we have already attained.
Making It Personal
Where does the level of your obedience stand? Are you willing to take it deeper to show you are thankful for all He has done for you? What is the first thing you need to obey about?
Making It Personal Kids
Why does Jesus want you to obey Him? Do you like to obey Jesus? What can you do to obey Jesus today?
Father, please forgive us for the times we have not shown You how seriously we take Your sacrifice. Give us an ever deepening desire to obey You and bring You glory by the way we live. In Jesus’ name, amen.