As we head into the weekend celebrating our nation’s independence, I am reminded that this is really a celebration of when our independence was declared. What’s the difference? In 1776, our nation was not yet free. It would not be free until the final battle of the Revolutionary War at Yorktown in 1781 when British Parliament was convinced they couldn’t win. But the war actually continued at sea until the Treaty of Paris was signed in 1783 and the United States was recognized as a sovereign nation.
The freedom celebrations started me thinking about our personal and spiritual freedom.
In Luke 4, Jesus is in the temple synagogue at Nazareth and he reads this passage from Isaiah:
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
After reading this, he begins to speak to the people by saying,
“Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”
He had declared freedom for all. Through the good news of the gospel, he was proclaiming freedom. Many experience immediate freedom from bondage (addictions, illness, etc.) when they accept the good news of the gospel. For others, there is still a battle that needs to be fought to overcome that bondage. Does that mean they aren’t free?
I believe there is freedom in accepting the truth of the gospel. But I also believe that because we live in a fallen world, we may have to do battle with our human addictions and sinful desires in order to experience complete freedom. It’s very hard to win a battle if we haven’t decided and declared that we are going to win, and recognized that God through Christ has given us that freedom.
Our founding fathers and ancestors (my fourth-great-grandfather was at that battle in Yorktown) declared their freedom and then were willing to fight for it. They picked up arms and fought until their freedom was recognized by their oppressors and the world.
In the same way, have you declared your freedom in Christ and are you willing to fight the battles to realize that freedom? What weapons do you need to employ to win your freedom over the bondage (addiction, behaviors, relationships) that keeps you from experiencing complete freedom through Christ? Read Ephesians 6:10-19 to find out how to arm and protect yourself against the attacks of the enemy that would hinder your freedom.
Let’s make this weekend a real declaration of freedom for ourselves! Let’s declare war on those things that hold us back from experiencing complete freedom in Christ and fulfilling His call on our lives.
Sharing my heart 4 home and freedom!