Summary: Jesus frees from sin, despair, religious bobdage, death.
Jesus’ Declaration of Independence John 8:31-35
INTRO.: Truth makes one free. What is freedom? Not leisure, license, anarchy.
Opportunity: 1. To reap what we have sown and keep it, 2. To make our own decisions, 3to be the best that is possible for us.
What is truth” John 18:38. Jesus’ answer: John 14:6 and 17:17. One central Truth from which all others emanate. The teachings of the Bible make men free because they lead them to Jesus. It is not enough to know about Him. We must know Him.
The freedom Jesus gives:
I. Jesus’ hearers claimed they were free. Jn. 8:33
A. They had been slaves for centuries:
1. Egypt, Assyria, Syria, Persia, Babylonia.
2. Even as they spoke they were slaves of Rome.
3. But Jesus had a different slavery in mind. 34.
4. We become slaves to sin and don’t even know it. We fool ourselves.
5. Slavery to sin is the essential slavery.
B. What can set us free? Rom. 6:17, 18
1. Obedience to the truth from the heart.
2. Men are made to serve something. There is no complete freedom.
3. Slavery to sin leads to death, so it is better to be a slave to obedience (righteousness).
II. We live in a world full of discouragement:
A. Despair is easy to come by. It is a major problem in our world: Depression, suicide, etc.
1. Sin greed, low regard for human life, etc. all breed despair.
2. Indifference toward Christ, even in Church also leads to despair.
3. Hard to find a real moral person, let alone a real Christian. We often despair.
B. The Christian is freed from despair. Looks forward to a better future: Rom. 8:18-23.
1. Glory: v. 18
2. Redemption: 23 - freed from corruption resulting fr. Sin. Freed from limitations of the physical, temporal realm.
3. Recognition: 19 - The world will know us for who we are; children of God.
4. There is no cause for despair for the Christian.
III. There is a religious slavery.
A. Millions today bow down to idols.
1. This is religious slavery.
2. Jews were slaves to Law, temple, priests,
3. Many today rely blindly on guidance of “enlightened leaders.”
4. Even Christians sometimes slaves to buildings, preachers, denominations, etc.
B. In Christ, there is religious freedom. Gal. 5:1
1. All are priests.
2. All enjoy free fellowship with God.
3. All can read and understand His Word.
4. No outside influence can separate us.
IV. Humans fear death more than anything else:
A. This fear ultimately causes slavery:
1. Men do as they are told when others hold the power to kill them.
2. The power of death is sin. If we have no sin we will never die spiritually or eternally.
3. If we have no sin we needn’t fear death. Jesus didn’t.
B. Jesus freed us from the fear of death: Heb. 2:15
1. He alone had that ability. He possessed the authority f God and a sinless life.
2. He proved the sinless need never die when He was raised from the dead.
3. So, the Christian has nothing to fear from death. Christ has conquered death.
CONC.: Are you truly free? From sin, despair, religious bondage, fear of death?
True freedom is only in Jesus. John 8:32