Boundaries are a Boundary

Camino de Santiago with Kingdom Journeys

I use boundaries and have them in my life but I’m wondering if they are just something we’ve accepted as a “Christian practice” instead of what Jesus and the Bible tell us how to live.  I’m even wondering if there are healthy boundaries…

I’ve been wrestling with the idea that boundaries actually create a boundary from the Holy Spirit moving in our lives.  That we setup these rules and regulations, that temporarily help, but keep us from experiencing deep healing and walking in the Spirit like it talks about in Romans, Hebrew, Philippians and Galatians.

If we are constantly setting up boundaries in our relationships, fleshly struggles or normal lives then we will miss out or forget what it looks like to walk with Christ.

Boundaries I am speaking about here are boundaries that revolve around the law or flesh.  I am not saying that we always say, “Yes” to everything.  We need to be self aware, getting daily oxygen from the Word, and know your identity in Christ.  I am merely questioning if we’ve realized that Jesus’s death had a greater purpose.

Camino de Santiago with Kingdom Journeys

Yes, I’ve created boundaries in my life.  Looking back, I feel as if I am not mature enough to go into many situations that I am going to be tempted because I hear the Spirit telling me to stop but I keep going, like it talks about in Romans 7.  But then I look at Jesus’s perfect life as a human, giving up His Godly deity (Read Philippians 2:4-8). And especially His life when He is combating the devil in the wilderness.  He offensively attacks him with scripture and keeps from sinning (Read Matthew 4:1-11).  He walked in with full confidence knowing that He would have communion with God at the Tree of Life, He walked in faith.

Living by Christ’s example should give me confidence to walk into situations knowing I have His Spirit, “and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father.” (John 14:12 NASB)

Do we really believe we can live fully in the Spirit, not desiring things of the flesh?  Men, do we really believe we can go the rest of our lives without lusting after a woman?  Or, do we put a limit on God by saying that it is impossible?

Camino de Santiago with Kingdom Journeys

Galatians 2:19-21 in the Message has some powerful truth it says, “I tried keeping rules and working my head off to please God, and it didn’t work. So I quit being a “law man” so that I could be God’s man. Christ’s life showed me how, and enabled me to do it. I identified myself completely with him. Indeed, I have been crucified with Christ. My ego is no longer central…

It is no longer important that I appear righteous before you or have your good opinion, and I am no longer driven to impress God. Christ lives in me. The life you see me living is not “mine,” but it is lived by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I am not going to go back on that…

If a living relationship with God could come by rule-keeping, then Christ died unnecessarily.”

Paul is living in this freedom, to the point he is questioning himself… Questioning if he is really living in agreement with the scriptures, so he asks his brothers Barnabas, Titus, James, Peter, and John.  God kept His promise in Jeremiah 31:33 when He said, “I will put My law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts.”  They all agree that Paul is preaching the same gospel that they have been preaching.  That he was in fact correctly living in the Spirit and the “New Covenant” created when Jesus died on the cross.

“Rule-keeping does not naturally evolve into living by faith, but only perpetuates itself in more and more rule-keeping, a fact observed in Scripture: ‘The one who does these things [rule-keeping] continues to live by them.’” (Galatians 3:12 MSG)

Therefore, if we are constantly setting up rules to keep from sinning or failing then our faith will never grow.  We will hinder ourselves from experiencing high grace or mercy.  Sure, there are going to be times when you go outside of your boundaries, but the thought process and reasoning behind the boundaries is the religious root that I am starting to believe Jesus would be against.

Camino de Santiago with Kingdom Journeys

In Galatians 5 it says, “The moment anyone submit ourselves to any rule-keeping system, at that moment Christ’s hard earned gift of freedom is squandered.”  Those are bold words that challenge us to live by faith in the Holy Spirit instead of lacking courage to live by faith (Galatians 6).

It does state specifically through-out scripture that living in freedom is not to be abused or be used for selfish reasons, if it is you wont inherit the Kingdom of Heaven.  “Everything is permissible but not everything is beneficial.” (1 Corinthians 10:23)

You will know you’re living in the Spirit by the fruits of the Spirit or in the flesh by the fruits of the flesh. (Read Galatians 5:13-21)

I believe that the Apostles were living in a community of grace in the New Covenant, something only the Holy Spirit can reveal to us.

God, I pray that you reveal the truth in our lives and living in faith.  Help us to have courage to walk in faith.  Reveal the deeper truths through the intercession of the Holy Spirit.  As it says in Galatians 5:5, “We wait expectantly for the hope of righteousness.”  God, help us to use our freedom to serve others.  Help us to see that the Holy Spirit is everything.

|| Update July 30, 2013: Almost 2 months later after writing this I still don’t know where I stand on this issue. I’ve come to see a great value in boundaries… I still don’t know if all that we establish are healthy. I do agree now that there are healthy boundaries. ||
  • I think I hear where you’re headed, but I wouldn’t go so far as to say that boundaries are not good (Romans 7:7). Boundaries/law don’t create Life, but they serve a purpose. I love that you want complete freedom in Him!

  • Ponyboy

    I believe these boundaries are dynamic. There is a way to walk through life and the relationships making it up with a Christ like conscience. Clearly, a Christian living within boundaries, is no Christian at all. Mercy and grace free is from laws and rules. When you walk with The Lord, you walk with his ordained hand. Life is dynamic. Jesus knew this and knows this better than anyone, so guess what? He armed himself with the most perfect weapon, the Word of God and my holy roller the Holy Spirit!