Overcomer #18 – Freedom Means . . .
True or False: Freedom means you can do anything you want.
Oh sure, you’re free to choose to disobey the law. But then you’d have to cover it up, keep it a secret, and most likely pay for it later.
You’re also free to tell a lie. But then you’d have to keep telling the same lie. You’d have to remember who you told it to and how you told it. Or else you’d get caught.
You’re free to do drugs, abuse alcohol, and live a sexually immoral life. But all these so-called “freedoms” lead to slavery.
You’re free to make these choices. But considering the consequences, would you really be free?
Some are bound by rules and regulations. That’s legalism. Others throw off every rule and binge on whatever they please. That’s license.
Neither describes our freedom in Christ.
Paul wrote, “You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh” (Galatians 5:13).
In other words, “Don’t use your freedom in Christ as a base of operation for launching sinful desires, and then calling it ‘freedom in Christ’ so you won’t feel guilt and shame.”
Freedom in Christ is not freedom to sin. Not freedom to do as we please.
Freedom in Christ is freedom from sin. Freedom to control our sinful nature. Freedom to do what God wants us to do.
Someone might say, “I know God will forgive me anyway, so what does it matter if I sin?” Paul disagrees: “That’s not freedom. That’s an abuse of freedom.”
Plus, freedom in Christ is not freedom to disregard the needs of others. “Rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’” (Galatians 5:13-14).
We are never free from other people. We are to be concerned for them and their feelings.
With the Holy Spirit within us, the love of God compels us to live in freedom – liberated from our own sinful nature, and liberated to serve God and others.
~ Pastor Dave