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Summary: "Being a servant of Christ is to be free from the approval of the world"

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Recently one of the TV programmes I enjoy watching is Noel Edmonds “Deal or No Deal”. Has anyone here seen the programme. Bank’s offer could suddenly vaporize. ?

Basically there are 22 contestants and each one will get a go in the seat so to speak. There are 22 boxes, each one of them contains a cash figure from 1 pence with the top amount being £250,000. The main contestant will pick one box, the rest are given to the other contestants to look after. No-one knows what their box contains One by one the main player will select a box and eliminate an amount from their potential winnings in the box they’ve selected, it’s a game of chance and really does involve sheer luck. Periodically there will be a call on the telephone, on the end of the line is the anonymous banker. . The Banker is always watching the player, trying to analyse their psychology, and has has no idea what the contestant’s sealed box contains. The Banker’s sole purpose is to try and ensure the player leaves the studio with the smallest amount of money possible. Based on the amounts of money the player has eliminated and their perception of the player themselves, the Banker makes a cash offer to buy the mystery box. Whenever The Banker makes an offer, the player is left with a desperate dilemma... take the offer, or risk losing everything!- ’Deal or No Deal’. It’s certainly a tough one, a contestant could have £250K in their box, they could have a few quid. Do they turn down the bankers guaranteed amount of £20k or do they keep on playing?

Before you get to disappointed I havenot turned up with a quarter opf a million pounds and we will not be playing Deal or No Deal. But based on the 2 passages that were read earlier

from the gospel of Matthew and the letter in Galatians and the question that we will be considering is Free or Not Free that is the question.

Now the answer may seem fairly obvious. Jesus makes a number of claims about freedom

John 8:36

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

Luke 4:18

"The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed,

Mark 5:34

He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering."

The gospel message is that Jesus has come to bring in the kingdom of God and that through his death on the cross individuals can be forgiven for their sins and are free to live and serve him. So if you have said Yes to Jesus then you are free.

Yet there is this nagging voice in our heads “Am I really free?” – I don’t always feel free.

Lets look at some examples.

Tom works up in town – and has been at the same company for the last 4 years. When he started the hours were fairly regular. 9 till 5.30. But over the last few months he’s been made to work longer and longer hours and feels more and more trapped – having less and less time for his family. He feels constrained but not free to speak to his boss for fear of consequences


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