Welcome to another edition of My Thoughts. We have embarked on another Independence Day (July 4th), which is our 247th year of freedom from Great Britain. Our country is still very young compared to other countries in the world. Many of those countries do not have the kind of freedom we enjoy. The ones that have this freedom either take advantage (good or bad) of it at the expense of others, take it for granted, or feel that it is deserved.
Here is a fact that I like to point out. Of the 56 brave men who signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, committed “High Treason” against the crown of England. The committed act was punishable by death. After the signing of the most important document in our country’s history, bloodshed followed. Many have given their lives for the freedoms we enjoy here in the United States. We call this “physical freedom.”
One man, over 2000 years ago, challenged religious leaders to know and understand the real truth and paid for it with His life. Who was this person, the Lord Jesus Christ? He put it all on the line for everyone past, present, and future. The reason is simple, “spiritual freedom.” Jesus put it all on the line, so we can enjoy freedom from sin, and condemnation, and receive God’s love and grace.
Our foundational Scripture comes from 2 Corinthians 3:17, “Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.”
Meaning of Freedom
Another name for freedom is liberty. The dictionary meaning of freedom is, “the condition of being free to act without externally imposed restraints.” Physical freedom is, “the possibility for a person to go and do what they want.”
Free person, innocent person, freewill offering, jubilee year, and liberty are used in place of the word freedom when used as a noun. Freedom can also be used as a verb meaning to deliver, send out, go unpunished, be free, or pardon. All I just mentions is “physical freedom.” I will discuss “spiritual freedom” in just a few minutes, so stay tuned.
God Provided Freedom With His Words
Freedom was first introduced in the Garden of Eden. Genesis 1:26, “Then God said, ‘Let us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds in the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.’”
The key word here is “dominion,” which means sovereignty or control. You’re probably thinking about how dominion could be associated with freedom. At that very moment, God also gave us free will to make choices. We are not God’s robots. If so, sin would have never crept into the world God created. So, we have the freedom to make choices in our lives.
God told Moses to send out a warning in Deuteronomy 30:19 about making choices, “I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live.” The freedom of choice is yours, spiritual or eternal life in heaven or spiritual death in hell. Do you want to live in the blessing of Deuteronomy 28:1-14 or the cursing in verses 15-68? We have a freedom of choice and I pray you to choose wisely.
Jesus Provided Spiritual Freedom With His Blood
In Luke 4:18, Jesus is quoting Isaiah 61:1, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed;”
Jesus guarantees freedom or liberty from the oppressive state of the law of Moses. The Pharisees made it so oppressive that it was impossible to live up to how they continued to change how the law was to be upheld.
This passage offered great expectations to many oppressed people. Look at what Jesus offered to them:
- Preach the gospel or the “Good News” to the poor in Spirit. Because of the constant constraints of the law, Jesus comforted them and us with hope.
- Jesus healed the brokenhearted with the truth, so by grace, they now have hope for eternal life.
- Proclaimed liberty or freedom to all captives of sin. His blood shed at the cross broke the chains and set us free.
- By recovering the sight of the blind, we can see the truth, repent, and receive God’s awesome gift of salvation.
Jesus brought the New Covenant God spoke to the prophet Jeremiah (Jeremiah 31:31-34). God would not write it on tablets of stone, He wrote it on everyone’s heart, so now we have no excuse. The result of the New Covenant is freedom. This freedom is possible because Christ has redeemed from the penalty of the Law those who believe so that they become children of God. This freedom as children is confirmed by the Spirit, who enables Christians to call God Father.
The Truth Makes You Free
Here at Van De Bogart Ministries, we use John 8:32, “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” The truth that shall make you free, is the truth of His grace. This is the truth that He came to give us. His Word proclaims that “grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17).
The good news is that grace came to set you free from the curse of the law. Grace is not a doctrine or a theological subject. When Jesus talks about grace, He is talking about Himself. Grace is a person. Grace is Jesus Christ of Nazareth, the Son of the Living God! The truth that has the power to fling wide open your prison doors is His grace. His grace is the antidote to counteract every poison in your mind and provide the freedom that you are searching for.
When you encounter Jesus, taste His love, and savor His loving-kindness and tender mercies, every wrong belief begins to dissolve in the glory of His love. Every dark thought and evil addiction that may have held you captive cannot but scatter when it is exposed to the light of His grace!
Your freedom is found in rightly believing in Jesus. His favor and His love in your life. When you believe right about His grace, you will begin to live right.
The more you see in His Word what His grace has done for you, the more fears, condemnation, depression, and destructive habits will lose their grip on your life. And the more you believe and enjoy His grace and love, the more you’ll find the Lord’s wisdom, stability, and peace guiding your decisions and actions.
Right believing always produces the right living and the right results. By accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, you are making a conscious decision to finally become free of the slavery of sin. To live a life now of spiritual liberty or freedom, Amen!
I am Dale Van De Bogart and I fully agree on God’s Word!
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