Friday, July 6, 2018


And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.  If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. 
(John 8:32, 36 KJV)

Irving Berlin singing God Bless America

On July fourth we celebrated a special day in the United States of America—the day when our Founding Fathers declared independence from the tyranny of Great Britain (in 1776).  Many of them knew that the ultimate freedom was found in right relationship to the Lord.  As a group, these brave men (and their families) were willing to pay a high price to rebel against Great Britain—some lost their lives for the cause, while others lost homes, family members, and many lost their wealth.  Yet they believed that the price paid was worth it to live free and independent lives; we today in America are the beneficiaries of their commitment and sacrifices.

Earlier this week, I spent some time thinking about freedom.  What is freedom?  What is true freedom?  How is freedom in Christ different from political freedom or any other type of freedom?  What does it mean to be free?

As an undergraduate political science major I studied the constitution and history in some depth.  Our Founding Fathers knew there was a better way to live and to govern.  Many of them knew that it was in Jesus alone that we find true freedom—the United States’ Constitution reflects the difference made by founding a nation on godly principles.

Freedom of all types does come with a cost—sometimes even at the cost of our lives—literally and metaphorically—this is true in gaining freedom politically or spiritually.  In the spiritual realm, Jesus died and rose again that we could be free from satan’s tyranny and free from sin.  

But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. 
(Romans 5:15 KJV)

As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God. 
(1 Peter 2:16 KJV)

Freedom is not exactly “free”.  All types of freedom come with certain principles to adhere to—freedom is not a license to do whatever we want we wish—freedom comes with rights and responsibilities to meet.  True freedom has laws (or commands) to protect us—this is true in democracies and spiritually.  God’s laws are truly loving and protecting us from harm—yes, we have been set free by grace.  Grace does not mean that anything goes and we can sin all we want to; grace means that God forgives our sins through Jesus and in turn we obey Him out of love.  

Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. 
(Romans 5:18 KJV)

Personal photo

Jesus truly sets us free—free to truly live an abundant life (John 10:10) now and throughout eternity.  Living in a democracy does not mean that we are truly free if we do not acknowledge our need for God, our need for salvation through Jesus.  No one and I do mean no one is good enough on his or her own to make it to Heaven without surrendering to Jesus asking Him to forgive their sins and come into their heart.  With Jesus it is fully possible to live in a country that is not free, yet be freer than those in a democracy, if Jesus is Savior and Lord.

Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. 
(2 Corinthians 3:17 KJV) 

Jesus is standing ready to come and set you free from sin, from your past (no matter how horrid it is); He loves you deeply and desires a relationship with you.  Our Lord is a gentleman and will not force Himself upon You.  What are you waiting for in surrendering to the Lord and being set truly free?  In surrendering to the Lord, you will find great freedom! 

Yes, this freedom does come at a cost.  What do we need to die to in order to be set truly free?  (This is a daily process.)  We die to self, crucifying the flesh AFTER we said yes to Jesus, seeking His forgiveness for our sins and inviting Him to dwell in our heart.  This is true freedom—we can be imprisoned and be freer than those who have imprisoned us!

For those who are set free in Christ, how can you use your freedom responsibly?  How has freedom in Christ changed your life?  If you are not free in Christ why say “yes” to Jesus today—He has already said “yes” to you!  Saying “yes” to Jesus sets us FREE!  Praise the Lord!

Please join with me in prayer:

Lord of All, Thank You for the true freedom we have in You—freedom that is true and that comes at a cost.  For those of us who live in freedom we express our thanks to those who have gone before us, sometimes even giving their lives that we might remain free.  For those who do not live in freedom, please surround them with Your loving presence and woo them into a relationship with You or in to a deeper relationship with You.  Encourage us to be ever mindful of what it means to be truly free in Christ.  In Jesus’ Name we pray.  Amen.

From My Heart to Yours,