When we confuse law and gospel, we avoid both the trauma of God's holiness and the liberating power of his grace. We begin to speak about living the gospel, doing the gospel, even being the gospel, as if the Good News were a message about us and our works instead of about Christ and his works. The proper response is neither to dispense with the law nor to soften it from demand to helpful advice. . . . We are not called to live the gospel but to believe the gospel and to follow the law in view of God's mercies. Turning the gospel into law is a very easy thing for us to do; it comes naturally. That is why we can never take the Good News for granted.Which is precisely why Horton insists that we must preach the gospel to ourselves every day! "THE LAW TELLS US WHAT TO DO; THE GOSPEL TELLS US WHAT GOD HAS DONE FOR US IN CHRIST. . . . The law tells us what God expects of us; the gospel tells us what God has done for us." (emphasis mine)
Indeed, it IS for freedom that Christ has set us free (Gal. 5:1), not freedom from the law, but freedom IN CHRIST to believe and be saved. It is the work of Christ that you believe and are saved (John 6:29). HIS work. We rest in that, and in that alone! Don't bolt at this under the pretense that "we're supposed to do something!" We DO. We believe. We trust. We depend on God. It's not OUR doing. It is HIS. Why do we fight this?
"Jesus, I am resting, restingAmen!
In the joy of what Thou art.
I am finding out the greatness
Of Thy loving heart." --Jean S. Pigott (1876)
Taken from Christless Christianity by Michael Horton.