July 4th, 2018 || Scripture of the Day

To the Jews who had believed Him, Jesus said “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free…

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.   

John 8:32- 36.

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because He has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free…”

Luke 4:18

From ages past, humans have fought for their freedom.

Our first “fight” for “freedom” was when was sought to set ourselves “free” from God by believing the satanic lie that God was not really interested in our well being because He was keeping us from eating the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil. We fell for that deception, and realized that Satan had only defeated us and put us in bondage to sin. It was a choice we made. We exercised our “freedom” from God only to regretfully find out that our so called freedom would only land us in bondage and give us a covering of leaves on our bodies.

Our innocence disappeared. Our joyous communication with God was lost and we were banished from the garden of Eden. The free ride was over. Picking and eating from whatever tree we desired in the beautiful garden of Eden was no longer an option. We had to toil for every morsel of food we fed our bodies. (Genesis 3).

The heart of humans became so wicked that the Bible says: “The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time. The LORD regretted that He had made human beings on the earth, and His heart was deeply troubled.” (Genesis 6:5-6).

So, what was the end of our so called freedom? God ended up destroying the entire world with a massive flood. He only spared the righteous man Noah and his family and restarted the human race with them. But evil still resurfaced. The story of humanity has been riddled with greed, killings and wars. Humans have subjected, controlled, and destroyed one another. The powerful have even subjected to other humans to years of enslavement. But God raised up concerned righteous people to fight for their freedom. He always does and always will through His word and chosen vessels.

Humans have fought costly and very destructive wars to free themselves from subjugation to other humans. We have even fought “World Wars.” to secure our freedom from evil. Nations have fought wars of independence and foreign powers to the same end.

But question: Why are humans still in bondage to wickedness, bondage and imprisonment to destructive tendencies in spite of all we do to free ourselves? The rich and poor, great and least, educated and uneducated, literate and illiterate are subject to the same plight!  We are helpless in our own strength to free ourselves from evil thoughts and acts.

The reason? We have rejected the only true source of freedom. We have rejected Jesus, the Savior of the world and the freedom He offers us through His word! Jesus says: “If you hold to my teachings, you are truly my disciples and you shall know the truth, and the truth will set you free…” Jesus came to set captives free and to release the oppressed. So, as individuals, families, communities or nations, there can be no freedom apart from walking with Jesus and living in obedience to His word. Without His person and His truth, there is no true freedom. God’s word and His commands never puts us in bondage. It only sets us free.

Is that really true? Absolutely! If it wasn’t true, humanity would not have endured all the sufferings we have been encountering in our existence. Even God’s Church has not been living as true disciples of Jesus; hence Satan continues to have free reign because we do not hold on to the teachings of Jesus. So how do we gain true freedom? Jesus and the Word of God is the answer. Living by God’s word and statutes is the greatest source of freedom you will ever know. What freedom is there in lying, committing adultery, coveting what belongs to others, disrespecting your parents, or committing murder? Nothing but bondage! True freedom is found in Christ and His teachings alone. It has no equal in history.

Prayer: Lord, without you and the truth of your word, my life will be held in bondage by the evil one. Please help me to enjoy the freedom that only comes from you and your word. Amen.