If Your New Year’s Resolution Is to Live the Christian Life, Don’t Bother

When you belong to Jesus, your life is always pleasing to God because the Spirit of Christ lives the life of Christ in you and for you. I know, you think you need to resolve to do better, that you are somehow falling short of God’s desire for you.

You’re not.

But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life because of righteousness. (Romans 8:10.)

You are the righteousness of God because Jesus himself is the righteousness of God, and the Spirit of Christ is in you. And because of Jesus, your old life is gone and your new life is here now and completely righteous in Christ:

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ … . God made him who had no sin to be a sin offering for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (2 Corinthians 5:17-18, 21.)

  • You are in Christ and Christ is in you.
  • Your old self is gone and your new self is here.
  • Christ is righteous and you have been given the righteousness of Christ.

That’s why I don’t bother myself with New Year’s resolutions. God has already resolved everything for me.

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23 Responses to If Your New Year’s Resolution Is to Live the Christian Life, Don’t Bother

  1. Tim I made a New Year’s Resolution to comment on your posts again been reading them but got to get back to commenting on them. However, seeing how you said don’t bother making new year’s resolutions, guess I won’t bother. LOL!

    Liked this, “I know, you think you need to resolve to do better, that you are somehow falling short of God’s desire for you. You’re not.”

    Thanks Tim!

  2. Jeannie says:

    Because He’s all about that grace! (Sorry, I just had to say that today.) This is one of those things that seems almost too good to be true, Tim, and yet it is. Thanks for reminding us of it at the start of a new year.

  3. Laura Droege says:

    Thank you for the reminder, Tim. It’s good to have you back in the blogging world. I hope you had a lovely holiday offline!

  4. John Allman says:

    So, “Candide”, everything is already as good as it could ever become, by our exercise of [wink] “free” will, in this best of possible all fallen and sin-ridden worlds?

    We please our “sovereign” God whatever our calendar-ritualistic resolutions or lack of them, and whether we keep any resolutions we do make or not, do we? Because His Spirit ensures that those-who-think-that-they-have-made-a-commitment-to-make-Jesus-their-Lord-meaning-it, have stepped onto a sanctification escalator, that ensures that their performance in the next year (and until they die, or Christ returns) will please God, because theirs will inevitably be the least-pleasing performance “possible”, come what may?: And also the least-pleasing performance possible, for that matter, since everything that happened was decreed before Adam was created in the first place?

    If so, then your apparently exhorting us to relax and to let God work out our salvation, to “let go and let God”, without any “fear and trembling” on our part, and certainly without any naively drafted “resolutions”, is just as silly as (interpreted likewise) the exhortation of the apostle Peter, that we ought to “work out” our “salvation” with “fear and trembling”. What will be, will be, after all. Let it be, let it be. Que sera sera.

    But if (as I hold) both nowadays popular determinisms, both materialistic and theistic, aren’t true – if we a free agents after all – then *resolving* strikes me as a big part of what the authentic gospel most often exhorts.

    Not that I can be bothered with this too much now, for reasons that will become apparent if you will take a walk in my own shoes, by visiting (say)

    http://slavery.org.uk
    http://JohnAllman.UK

    and learning something from my (as I said at the Brussels conference) “funny” life.

    • Tim says:

      I’ve read Candide, and I wouldn’t say that my post really reflects Voltaire’s protagonist any more than I would say your position reflects an exaltation of self over Spirit – although I could caricaturize your comment to say such a thing just as you’ve caricaturized my post to support your position. But just because one logical extreme of your take on things would be that someone might end up saying “Look what a fine fellow I am for having resolved and successfully followed through and now I have achieved the Christian life”, that doesn’t mean you yourself really mean someone should do such an absurd thing. Nor does my post lead to the absurd extremes you make it out to lead to.

      Cheers,
      Tim

      • John Allman says:

        Thank God that my “absurd extremes” are not yours after all.

        Er, why?

        Do you have ANY idea who I am, and what my ministry is? (Not of my own choosing.) The clue is in my links.

      • John Allman says:

        Maybe I should make a resolution (or not, as the case may be) to stop being so contrary. However, that is in my character.

        If you (for example) say something (as you did) that, taken as you intended it, could encourage a true believer along the road to heaven, I will always look for a way in which it could be misinterpreted, a meaning put upon it that I realise you probably didn’t intend, but which might encourage a false believer to remain on the road to hell.

        You understood that that was what I was doing, and therefore didn’t take, or give back, offence. Thank you.

        And it was the first “least-pleasing” that should have said “most-pleasing”, in my first post. Clumsy me. And I was stone cold sober at the time too!

        Anyway, happy new year, to you and all your readers.

  5. John Allman says:

    Typo: in the second “least-pleasing”, I meant “most-pleasing”

  6. Ruth says:

    Just read the afore mentioned blogger’s site, well a bit of, won’t be again! Welcome back Tim, lovely to read your blog! 🙂

    • Tim says:

      Thanks, Ruth, I’m glad to be here once again too!

    • John Allman says:

      What did you dislike about the blog, Ruth?

      The thing about blogs is that every blog tells you something about what sort of life the blogger has led.

      Sometimes people only want to read autobiographies, or blogs, musings or essays, that were written by people who have had experiences similar to their own. Somebody who was really happy with their church, and who appreciated its leaders, might find a blog like Julie Ann’s (where I first “met” Tim) hard going, whereas somebody who had just left a church, because they were very unhappy with its leaders, might take to it like a duck to water, for example.

      It takes a different sort of person enjoy reading something written by somebody who sees things from a completely different point of view from their own.

      But a point of view is simply how the world looks from a particular position, when looking in a particular direction.

      We don’t always get to choose what position life carries to, because what other people do to and around us, of their own volition, which we would often prefer them not to do, take us to new places, from which the landscape of what one can see of the whole world looks different from before. But, from any position we have ended up in, there is only one view to see, for each direction one looks in, or for each thing one looks at.

      It may be that you don’t like that blog, because the writer has been on a different journey from yours. It’s no good saying, “Well he shouldn’t have been on a different journey from mine, because mine is the right journey to be on, and his has been the wrong journey, so no wonder he sees what I see from a different angle, the WRONG angle. He’s in the wrong place, that’s why. He should be in the right place, where I am standing, if he want’s to see things *properly*, from MY point of view.

      See what I mean?

      I am in a lonely place I never chose to be in. I write about my life, indirectly, because I write about what I see, from my lonely place. I hope that somebody will tell me how to bloom where I am planted, rather than to tell me to uproot myself, and plant myself next to them, where there are lots of other people, all seeing things the same, not just because of group think, but also because they are all in the same place.

      • Ruth says:

        John Allman,
        You ask….do you know who I am of readers here. No, but I know who Christ is and that is sufficient to all,things.
        Your blog contains, your opinion, and that’s fine. Analyzing why I won’t be reading much doesn’t really matter. Suffice it to say I read widely, often wildly opposing views, comment on some and leave others.
        All the best for your journey, you sound sad and disempowered in your life, may you find peace.
        My place is, among others, here where opinion is shared and enjoyed in a way I enjoy.
        Happy New Year from me too. 🙂

        • John Allman says:

          I wouldn’t have asked what you disliked, if you hadn’t considered it important enough to make a point of announcing it here that there was something you disliked, sufficiently to leave quickly, resolving never to return.

          Happy new year.

  7. Pastor Bob says:

    I agree and then some. Health decisions can get a good start here, but that is all. I am who I am in Jesus Christ, and nothing will change that.

    “FOR THE GLORY!!!!!”
    -Glory to God!

    Happy New Year to all!

    • Tim says:

      “I am who I am in Jesus Christ, and nothing will change that.”

      Amen to that, PB, and well said!

      • Ruth says:

        And Amen from me too. Being free of guilt and walking in the light is awesome, and my one resolution is to read Tim’s blog, proverbs 31 and Living Truth regularly, and probably blog a lot, well some, far too easy for me to write essays instead of comments.
        How does anyone cope with Twitter….lol 🙂

  8. Ruth says:

    ….and of course Joyce Meyer….there’s fire in them there bones…and they burn bright for me…must be a small, clear voiced, strongly convicted little ladies thing!

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