Originally published Wednesday, 28 January 2015.
There's a song that I just can't get out of my head. It's called "I Am Set Free" and is written and performed by All Sons and Daughters. The chorus is what keeps playing a loop in my mind continually. In fact, I've even woken up hearing the lyrics several nights in a row:
"I am set free oh oh oh oh
I am set free oh oh oh oh
It is for freedom that I am set free."
It is for freedom that I am set free––words echoing a truth, written by Paul long ago to the churches in Galatia, that said, "For freedom Christ has set us free..." But I love what comes next in this verse–– "...stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery" (5:1).
I think we all have a tendency to slip back into old habits, back into things we've been freed from. When I read the book of Deuteronomy, all I hear is the word remember. Remember who you are. Remember that you are God's. Remember where you came from––that you were once slaves in Egypt but have been set free. John 8:36 says, "So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed." But how often do we still live like slaves?
Slaves to our worldly passions.
Slaves to our sins.
Slaves to the law.
Second Peter 2:19 tells us, "whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved" (emphasis mine). Romans 6:16 says, "Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness."
We are no longer slaves of sin, but of righteousness. We have been given freedom so that we might "present [our] members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification"––leading to life (Romans 6:19b). True life comes when we submit ourselves to God. But with freedom comes choice. We have the ability to choose who or what we submit ourselves to. Galatians 5:13-14 says, "For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'"
We are free to love. To love God and love others.
We are free to actually do the Bible.
We are free to live by the Spirit of God.
We are free to walk in our callings. To do the good works God has prepared for us to do.
We are free.
It is for freedom that we are set free.
And now, it is the time to live like it!
I Am Set Free - All Sons and Daughters
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