Monday: The Nature of Christian Freedom
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Paul’s command to stand firm in freedom is not made in isolation. An important statement of fact precedes it: “Christ has set us free.” Why should Christians stand firmly in their freedom? Because Christ has already set them free. In other words, our freedom is a result of what Christ has already done for us.

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This pattern of a statement of fact followed by an exhortation is typical in Paul’s letters (1 Cor. 6:201 Cor. 10:13-14Col. 2:6). For example, Paul makes several indicative statements in Romans chapter 6 about the facts of our condition in Christ, such as “We know that our old self was crucified with [H]im” (Rom. 6:6, ESV). On the basis of this fact, Paul can then issue the imperative exhortation, “Therefore, do not let sin exercise dominion in your mortal bodies” (Rom. 6:12, NRSV). This is Paul’s way of saying essentially, “Become what you already are in Christ.” The ethical life of the gospel does not present the burden of trying to do things in order to prove that we are God’s children. Rather, we do what we do because we already are His children.

From what has Christ freed us? Rom. 6:14Rom. 6:18Rom. 8:1Gal. 4:3Gal. 4:8Gal. 5:1Heb. 2:14-15.

The use of the word freedom to describe the Christian life is more prominent in Paul’s letters than anywhere else in the New Testament. The word freedom and its cognates occur 28 times in Paul’s letters, in contrast to only 13 times elsewhere.

What does Paul mean by freedom? First, it is not a mere abstract concept. It does not refer to political freedom, economic freedom, or the freedom to live any way we might please. On the contrary, it is a freedom that is grounded in our relationship to Jesus Christ. The context suggests that Paul is referring to freedom from the bondage and condemnation of a law-driven Christianity, but our freedom includes much more. It includes freedom from sin, eternal death, and the devil.

“Outside of Jesus Christ, human existence is characterized as bondage — bondage to the law, bondage to the evil elements dominating the world, bondage to sin, the flesh, and the devil. God sent [H]is Son into the world to shatter the dominion of these slave-holders.” — Timothy George, Galatians, p. 354.

What things do you feel enslaved to in life? Memorize Galatians 5:1 and ask God to make the freedom you have in Christ a reality in your life.
Amen!(44)

Comments

Monday: The Nature of Christian Freedom — 7 Comments

  1. We are definitely enslaved by our own limitations! Body, mind and soul are bound to this degenerative life of ours! We have no escape! But in Christ there is hope! He came here and overcame this prison! He won the race, he owned the prize because of His love for us! And only because of it! His strenght came from the fact that He Himself created us, although suddenly, somehow, we did not choose His love! We trusted in ourselves too much... We betrayed Him. We lost because we were proud! Nahive! But now, there is a chance for us to recover from falling! A chance for us to be really free again! When we decide to run back to His arms! When we decide to accept His merciful and passionate love for us! When we recognize His sacrifice of love! That's when we can partially restore our royal nature! Sons of King! Which will fully be made perfect again by the time He comes to rescue us forever!

    Amen!(27)
  2. We need to also memorize: John 8:31-32. Christ words on the matter. For if we abide in Him, that is obey His message. We are trully free from the bondage of sin. Isaiah put it this way: Those who want peace will keep there thoughts always committed and focused on God, because they put their trust in Him. Isaiah 26:3. To stay in the love of the Lord we need share our love. Let me refer you to Maurice and Stephens post of Yesterday. And add these text: 1John 3:18. 1John 4:12.

    Amen!(9)
  3. Repetition for emphasis! Again Paul makes speaks strongly against the legalistic mindset based on ‘saved by works and not by faith’ mentality, synonymous across the first 4 chapters of Galatians.
    Freedom in Christ from Self! It is liberation in Christ Jesus through faith, devoid of any form of belief, view or activity that shifts the focus from Christ to SELF – it can be many things in our daily lives, as Paul was alluding to justification through own works or plainly doing the ‘right things’ (biblically right) for the wrong reasons or intent.
    Freedom from selfishness, self-sufficiency, self-glorification, self-pity and so forth. Self-centrism is devoid of love, the type of love that Christ shows us and wants us to show others - the Christ like love in 1 Corinthians 13:1-13.
    The requirement of circumcision for the gentile believers, in the early church, to be heirs of Salvation was not reflective of the love of Jesus who died to save the whole world. Where His promise of Salvation is for free to all who believe.

    Amen!(8)
  4. Recurring sins quite often steal my joy and peace, and I know it's not because God isn't faithful. It's because I have not stood fast in the Liberty wherewith Christ has made me free! His promises are sure and never fails even when I am unsure and fail often. I thank God that it's only through His grace that I have victory and not my works!

    Amen!(7)
  5. Hallelujah! Hallelujah! I just want to celebrate the COMPREHENSIVE package of freedom that the lord has given to humanity. Paul got it right: "Even so when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world"(gal 4:3). The worldview of ethnicity, social status and salvation have enslaved the majority. But we are no longer children in BONDAGE being negatively influenced by the elements of society, thus we think and behave like sons and daughters of God!!!

    Amen!(4)
    • Indeed Lorraine!
      According to Galatians 4:4-7 But when the fullness of time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law, 5. To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. 6. And because we are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His son into our hearts,crying Abba Father.7. Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ!
      We have nothing to fear, our righteousness is in Christ, there is nothing we face that is foreign to Him. We must go on living a redemptive life, because we are His Redeemed!!

      Amen!(4)
  6. Freedom in Jesus does not mean that we no longer struggle with sin. It also does not mean that we now live and never make mistakes either.

    I like what 1 john 3:2 says, "Beloved, now are we the sons of god, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be; but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is."

    In other words, in Jesus, we are god's sons and daughters "Now." and it will not be until he appears (at his second coming,) that we will be like him and never sin again or struggle with sin or make mistakes again after that.

    Amen!(3)

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