Don't You Know You're Free?

Bill Brinkworth

“If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” John 8:36

In an attempt to retrieve an escaped rooster, I set out a live trap in hopes of retrieving him.  In the morning I was surprised to see that I did not trap the escapee, but in his place was an opossum.

My intent was not to catch the local wildlife, so I purposed to set him free.  I raised the trap door at one end and forced it to stay open with a nearby brick.  After gently prodding the animal to leave, the entrapped marsupial would not vacate.

I walked away hoping that when I was not around, he would leave his captivity through the open door.  One hour later he was still there. 

I found a thin stick and tried to push him out of the trap. He refused to turn around and flee.  He backed up so that his tail and hind legs were in freedom, but still he remained confined.  If I stopped my prodding, he would return back deep into his prison. After many minutes and attempts to push him out with the goad, he finally did turn around and fled to the woods. 

While endeavoring to free the opossum, I realized how similar the situation was for so many Christians. Folks have found themselves slaves to their sin. They are trapped by its unrelenting hold on their life. They mourn being slaves to their controlling lusts and other iniquities, but are not able to do anything about freeing themselves from its bondage. 

Finally, they hear how they can escape the penalty of their sin.  They trust Christ as their Saviour and become “born-again” children of God. Their sins are forgotten and forgiven (Ps. 32:1, 103:12), but they still remain subject to their sinful behavior. They continue in the sins that they were saved from. Although they could be free and have a more joyous and productive life, they remain in the same state they were in originally.

Just as that opossum had to turn around and purposely leave his cell, so must a believer make the move to leave his present condition.  He is free from the eternal wages of sin, but he has to put “feet” to his repentance. He has to turn around and go the new direction God has for him, as scary or different as it may seem.

It may involve leaving the fellowship of the wrong crowd.  Not going to the places where the temptation to do activities unpleasing to God’s commandments is an important step that must be done. Stop doing what you now feel uneasy about doing. Do not participate in what you believe God would not have you do.

Instead of feeding the flesh with what it wants to do, one must gratify the new need for spiritual food.  Daily reading the Word of God for yourself is essential, as is obeying what is revealed for you to do in its pages. Consistently talking to God in prayer and attending a Bible-believing and obeying church is also important.
“Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” Gal. 5:1

The door to a new life in Christ is wide open and awaiting you.  It offers changes and opportunities that you could never imagine; but you must choose to walk away from the “old life”, and let God guide you to the new. 

“What we mean by salvation is this: deliverance from the love of sin, rescue from the habit of sin, and setting free from the desire to sin.” — C. H. Spurgeon

This article was featured in The Bible View #650.

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