(Today's post by Marc Cannon)
Freedom, it’s something that we talk a lot about in Christian culture and in America in general. There are many definitions of freedom and if I asked you, most of you would probably give a similar testament to what you think freedom means or what it’s meant in your life. It could mean freedom of owning a firearm, riding a motorcycle without a helmet, hunting to put meat on your family’s table, driving any speed you want or to pursue a job or career that you choose. If any of those things are something you would correlate with freedom you aren’t wrong. We in this country celebrate and enjoy a lot of freedoms that are rare across the globe.
Slavery, it’s not something that is politically correct to talk about in this country. In fact it brings up a lot of old wounds. But, even with that being said most of us would define slavery uniformly. I can also venture to guess that no one reading this desires to ever be a slave. In this chapter Jesus speaks about freedom and slavery. In fact the two are married in a way, like two ends of a magnet. I know all too well about slavery. See, I have been a slave. No, I haven’t been horsewhipped, chained to another man while I work, been bought or sold, etc… But I have been bound to sin and many of them – Anger, lust, Alcohol Abuse, Materialism. Just like the slavery that’s not popular to talk about in our culture, these masters over men aren’t popular to talk about in our culture either. In fact, the enemy, also known as Satan, lies and creates pathways for us to allow ourselves to become enslaved to these very things. They cause shame, guilt, hurt, and condemnation and manifest rapidly. So as a man, what do we do? We suppress and hide our addictions, obsessions, compulsions, rage, and contempt.
I think we’re born to inherently crave freedom and in this chapter of John, Jesus tells us how to obtain freedom. In HIM!
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.”
Placing your trust and faith in Jesus is the only way to obtain the ultimate freedom over those things that enslave you. I can’t speak for anyone but myself, but I can testify that when I follow Jesus, trust in his teachings and word that I am set free from those things that bound my mind, body and soul. But first I had to come to the conclusion that I had enslavers. I had to face them and rely on Jesus to chip my compulsions away. Some compulsions were gone over night and others were chiseled away over time.
Today, I still struggle, but when I’m overcome with the feeling of being bound I rely on Jesus to provide the Freedom from those things that cause so much pain.
My prayer today is that if you’re enslaved by sin, no matter what the issue is, you confront it with Jesus and His truth and His guidance. I pray that you place your faith in Him to set you free from those ties that bind.
How has Jesus set you free?