October 27

John 8:33-36

“So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.” vs. 36

In 1945 the State of New Hampshire adopted the motto “Live Free or Die,” a slogan with roots dating back to the French Revolution. Some feel that it’s the perfect summation of the revolutionary principles that guided American patriots to declare independence in 1776. Like Patrick Henry’s “Give me liberty or give me death,” its words evoke passion and lift up freedom as the most desired human core value. Many of us would agree–but the picture gets murky when we begin to define just what freedom is. Our tendency is to think of freedom in political terms and assume that it’s closely related to what our constitution calls the Bill of Rights. That’s not a bad definition but it doesn’t come close to what Jesus meant when he spoke of freedom. For him freedom meant liberation from the power and bondage of sin and was unachievable by human effort. Such freedom is far superior to that won by American patriots and can be experienced by people living under every kind of political domination. External circumstances do not affect the liberty enjoyed by those whom the Son has made free. Such persons find light and joy in every moment of every day–we can see it in their eyes and in their loving. It’s wonderful to live in a free country! But it’s even better to freely live in the Light of Christ!

Thought for the Day: What does it mean to be free from the bondage of sin?

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