Summary: The freedom we have in Jesus
Anatoli Shcharansky, a dissident Soviet Jew, kissed his wife goodbye as she left Russia for freedom in Israel. His parting words to her were, ’I’ll see you soon in Jerusalem."" But Anatoli was detained and finally imprisoned. Their reunion in Jerusalem would not only be postponed, it might never occur. During long years in Russian prisons and work camps Anatoli was stripped of his personal belongings. His only possession was a miniature copy of the Psalms. Once during his imprisonment, his refusal to release the book to the authorities cost him 130 days in solitary confinement.
Finally, twelve years after parting with his wife, he was offered freedom. In February 1986, as the world watched, Shcharansky was allowed to walk away from Russian guards toward those who would take him to Jerusalem. But in the final moments of captivity, the guards tried again to confiscate the Psalms book. Anatoli threw himself face down in the snow and refused to walk on to freedom without it.
Those words had kept him alive during imprisonment. He would not go on to freedom without them.
Oh that we would be so bound, so attached, so depended upon God’s word that we would not think about living a day without!
Galatians 5:1-Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.
Galatians 5;13-For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.
Paul Harvey once told about a group of scientists who were determined to teach a chimpanzee to write. For fourteen years, the scientists labored diligently and patiently with this chimpanzee, providing things in its cage to enable it to form certain syllables. Finally the day arrived when it seemed that the chimpanzee was actually going to construct a sentence from the symbols it had been learning. Word went out, and other scientists crowded into the room and gathered around the cage. The scientists could hardly contain themselves as they pressed around the cage to read the history-making sentence. This is what the chimpanzee wrote: “Let me out!”
In the society that we live in, has a distorted idea of freedom, it believes you can have freedom without accountability and defines liberty as license to do what you want without consequences.
This type of thinking will always loss it’s freedom!
Because freedom cannot be kept, where responsibility is ignored!
Freedom doesn’t mean we are no longer responsible to work, pay our bills, to discipline our children, or to obey the law or to help those in need.
When we don’t do those things there are consequences for our actions!
Freedom is not the absence of responsibility, no, freedom requires of us more responsibility than we would had, if we were ever had under slavery.
Freedom demands more self-control, it demands more self-discipline. Here is a perfect example:
When a person moves from being an employee to owning his or her own business. The personal responsibility level increases. They must now manage other people beside themselves, pay the bills, write the checks, sign the bank loan, maintain the equipment, do the paperwork, and work many more hours than before without pay. If a self-employed person is not able to manage themselves or their business responsibly, they will lose the freedom to have their own business.
Freedom requires that we must be responsible for what we allow in our homes, at our job, and into our lives, and what we do with our finances and whether we serve others in love.
Failure to do so can open the door to destructive influences that will eventually bring us back into slavery to sin!
Verse 1-Christ has freed us so that we may enjoy the benefits of freedom. Therefore, be firm , and don’t become slaves again.
A Christian is a free person.
A Christian is free, from the guilt of sin because he has experienced God’s forgiveness.
A Christian is free, from the penalty of sin because Christ died for them on the cross.
A Christian is free, from the power of sin in his daily life.
Verse 13-but through love serve one another
Romans 13:8-10-Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.
For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear false witness,” “You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
In his book Open the Door Wide to Happy Living, T. Huffman Harris told of a young man named Eddie who became tired of life and decided to leap from a bridge into a turbulent river. Jim, a total stranger, saw Eddie being swept downstream and plunged into the water in an effort to save him. Eddie, a good swimmer, noticed the man floundering desperately in the strong current and knew that without his help he would drown. Something stirred within him. With all of his strength, Eddie swam over to the man and rescued him. Saving that stranger, who had attempted to save him, brought new hope and meaning to Eddie’s life.