Thursday, June 30, 2016

Timeless Truths: Freedom!

#27. Timeless Truths: Freedom!
June 30, 2016

The 4th of July is next week. America celebrates it's 240th birthday. Let's give thanks for what America, and let us pray for our country in this time of turmoil and hatred.

31 To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” 33 They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?” 34 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. 35 Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.
 John 8:31-36
All Scripture quotations are from the NIV.

As we reflect back on the 4th of July, this blog takes a look at an interpretation of freedom that is too often overlooked.

It is easier to describe the cost of freedom than it is to define freedom itself. Religious freedom is far more than not being bound by physical chains

  • In John 8, Jesus reveals that freedom is the truth. Therefore, Jesus is where we find real freedom—from sin and death. See also Romans chapter 8.
  • Paul also makes it clear that we do not have to live in the bondage of sin*.

*Definitions of sin:
  • Missing the mark.
  • Choosing to reject God and go our own way.

Not being bound by sin is good news!

What is/are the benefit(s) of freedom?

1 It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery… 13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. [Galatians 5:1, 13]
  • Freedom is not just for us.
  • We are set free so we can serve others and live in right relationships with God and those in our lives.
  • Freedom does not mean we can do whatever we want to do.
  • Freedom through and with God is the attractive freedom that the world is looking for.
  • This is real freedom.

Real freedom does not allow us to do whatever we want to do.

Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is [real] freedom! [2 Cor 3:17]

Thanks to Rev. Scott Peterson for the central teachings used in this blog.

Next Thursday's Timeless Truths Series: Crooked Walls Hate Plumb Lines

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