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Rev. Carl H. Kemp, Pastor

Real FREEDOM

May 27, 2007

 

(Liberty, Privileges, Responsibilities)

 

How do we know we are really free?

 

BIBLE READINGJohn 8:30-47

 

            KEY BIBLE VERSE: (John 8:36 NIV) So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

Knowing Jesus is knowing real freedom. Jesus himself is the truth that sets us free. He is the source of truth, the perfect standard of what is right. He frees us from the consequences of sin, from self-deception, and from deception by Satan. He shows us clearly the way to eternal life with God. Jesus does not give us freedom to do what we want, but freedom to follow God. As we seek to serve God, Jesus’ perfect truth frees us to be all that God meant us to be.

Knowing Jesus is freedom from the power of sin. Sin has a way of enslaving us, controlling us, dominating us, and dictating our actions. Jesus can free you from this slavery that keeps you from becoming the person God created you to be. If sin is restraining, mastering, or enslaving you, Jesus can break its power over your life.

 

 (Rom 5:21 NIV)  so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Freedom in Christ is the freedom to obey. As a sinner, separated from God, you see his law from below, as a ladder to be climbed to get to God. Perhaps you have repeatedly tried to climb it, only to fall to the ground every time you have advanced one or two rungs. Or perhaps the sheer height of the ladder seems so overwhelming that you have never even started up. In either case, what relief you should feel to see Jesus offering with open arms to lift you above the ladder of the law, to take you directly to God! Once Jesus lifts you into God’s presence, you are free to obey—out of love, not necessity; through God’s power, not your own. You know that if you stumble, you will not fall back to the ground. Instead, you will be caught and held in Christ’s loving arms.

 

 (Gal 5:1 NIV)  It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

 

 

 

Freedom in Christ is the freedom to serve. Christ died to set us free from sin and from a long list of laws and regulations. Christ came to set us free—not free to do whatever we want because that would lead back into slavery to our selfish desires. Rather, thanks to Christ, we are now free and able to do what was impossible before—to live unselfishly. Those who appeal to their freedom so that they can have their own way or indulge their desires are falling back into sin. But it is also wrong to put a burden of law keeping on Christians. We must stand against those who would enslave us with rules, methods, or special conditions for being saved or growing in Christ.

 

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