Rebellion. That word takes on so many different meanings in our lives. I always remember growing up and even now that the rebels of this world are those that didn’t hang with the crowd. Maybe they were bikers, got tattoos or piercings, road with the rough crowds. These are just some broad examples, but you get the point. When we typically think of rebellion we think of people that are around wilder elements and don’t live like the way people think they should.
Another kind of rebellion that we are so good at doing as a fallen humanity is rebelling against God. We have really perfected this art in this world as we find it so easy to choose our own pleasure and seek to figure things out on our own rather than trusting in God and following where He is leading us. Read the book of Jonah. This book shows Jonah’s rebellion from God and trying to flee to Tarshish rather than going to Nineveh as God tells Him. As my pastor spelled out however, this book also shows God’s unending grace and radical love in His pursuit of Jonah and seeing the people of Nineveh repent and turn to God. You here his teaching at this link https://vimeo.com/161467082
Yet, there is another rebellion I really want to talk about. This is the kind of rebel that Jesus was in His time on earth. Jesus grew up in a time that was filled with laws and rules for the people of Israel. The religious leaders of the day had the people jumping to hoop after hoop to follow their impossible to follow rules. Jesus, however was not bound by that. He lived with what John Eldredge referred to as a scandalous freedom. As Lecrae says, Jesus was a rebel, a renegade outlaw, and a sanctified trouble maker. Yet, he never sinned, living life by a different set of rules.
The type of rebellion that Jesus lived is the type of rebellion that we are meant to live. A rebellion against this world, not against God. Romans 12:2 says, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is.” Do not be conformed to this world. That’s real rebellion. Following the Father’s will for our lives. Living a life of spiritual discipline where you walk with God daily, seek Him out, and be sanctified daily through Christ.
This all sounds so simple in theory and many of us talk of our faith and trying to live it out, but that is the key isn’t it. Trying to live it out. There are so many pressures in this life to live for our own pleasure and desires. We turn to so many things that end up controlling our lives and hold us in bondage instead of giving us freedom. Freedom
C.S. Lewis stated, “God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing” Real freedom is found through Christ alone and in seeking out the heart of God every day. Be the kind of rebel that Jesus was. Don’t let this world define who you are. Your real identity is found in the person of Jesus Christ alone.
I love the ending of the Rebel Intro by Lecrae where it states:
You’re just a conformist, if you’re drunk and naked and driving around on a loud motorcycle smoking cigarettes and breaking commandments
And getting pregnant out of wedlock
Everyone’s done that, it’s so tiring
If you really want to be a rebel, read your Bible, because no one is doing that
That’s the only rebellion left
Read your Bible, because that’s the only rebellion left. That’s so true. This world has pulled us further and further from the heart of God and everyday there is a stronger pull. You don’t have to follow what everyone else is doing. Don’t minimize the Word of God and who we are in Christ. Rather get to know Him more and follow Him more.
Trust me it will be difficult. Just yesterday, I had to stand strong and say no something related to my kids and sports that we have been a part of for years. We have always been told that was the way to go, but realized that it was running our lives and we had to change our priorities. That simple little no may not have seemed like much, but it was a powerful statement for my life and my family.
My challenge to you all is to look over your life. Look at where your priorities and commitments are and then gauge if those are things that draw you closer to or further from the heart of God and His will for your life. Sometimes, it requires tough decisions that others may not understand and that may seem wrong to you, but the freedom that will come from truly standing against conformity and following the will of God is so great.