July 8, 2018
So with that being said, let’s explore for a moment what we are NOT free from while also testing the waters of our freedom.
We are NOT free from the storms of life, but we are FREE from any destruction they bring.
I 1st think of Joseph…
Psa. 34.19 (NKJV) Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the LORD delivers him out of them all.
7 We are like common clay jars that carry this glorious treasure within, so that the extraordinary overflow of power will be seen as God’s, not ours.[h] 8 Though we experience every kind of pressure, we’re not crushed. At times we don’t know what to do, but quitting is not an option.[i] 9 We are persecuted by others, but God has not forsaken us. We may be knocked down, but not out.
3 But that’s not all! Even in times of trouble we have a joyful confidence, knowing that our pressures will develop in us patient endurance. 4 And patient endurance will refine our character, and proven character leads us back to hope. 5 And this hope is not a disappointing fantasy,[d] because we can now experience the endless love of God cascading into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who lives in us![e]
No one is free from the challenging & difficulty people of life, but we are FREE to love them and overwhelm them with goodness.
Our church & family community is an opportunity to practice love so we can learn how to love the world.
13 Beloved ones, God has called us to live a life of freedom in the Holy Spirit. But don’t view this wonderful freedom as an opportunity to set up a base of operations in the natural realm. Freedom means that we become so completely free of self-indulgence that we become servants of one another, expressing love in all we do. 14 For love completes the laws of God. All of the law can be summarized in one grand statement: “Demonstrate love to your neighbor, even as you care for and love yourself.”[b] 15 But if you continue to criticize and come against each other over minor issues, you’re acting like wild beasts trying to destroy one another![c]
43 “Your ancestors have also been taught ‘Love your neighbors[be] and hate the one who hates you.’ 44 However, I say to you, love your enemy, bless the one who curses you, do something wonderful for the one who hates you,[bf]and respond to the very ones who persecute you by praying for them. 45 For that will reveal your identity as children of your heavenly Father. He is kind to all by bringing the sunrise to warm and rainfall to refresh whether a person does what is good or evil.
19 Beloved, don’t be obsessed with taking revenge, but leave that to God’s righteous justice.[h] For the Scriptures say: “If you don’t take justice in your own hands, I will release justice for you,” says the Lord.[i] 20 And: If your enemy is hungry, buy him lunch! Win him over with kindness.[j] For your surprising generosity will awaken his conscience, and God will reward you with favor.[k} 21 Never let evil defeat you, but defeat evil with good.[l]
No one is free from Satan’s accusations but we are FREE from any and all guilt, shame and condemnation they bring.
So now the case is closed. There remains no accusing voice of condemnation against those who are joined in life-union with Jesus, the Anointed One.[a]
13 This “realm of death” describes our former state, for we were held in sin’s grasp.[i] But now, we’ve been resurrected out of that “realm of death” never to return, for we are forever alive and forgiven of all our sins! 14 He canceled out every legal violation we had on our record and the old arrest warrant that stood to indict us. He erased it all—our sins, our stained[j] soul—he deleted it all and they cannot be retrieved! Everything we once were in Adam[k] has been placed onto his cross and nailed permanently there as a public display of cancellation. 15 Then Jesus made a public spectacle of all the powers and principalities of darkness, stripping away from them every weapon and all their spiritual authority and power[l] to accuse us. And by the power of the cross, Jesus led them around as prisoners in a procession of triumph. He was not their prisoner; they were his![m]
So child of God – Stand fast in your new found freedom. Rise up and be the son and daughter God is calling you to be! Plant your feet firmly therefore within the freedom that Christ has won for us, and do not let yourselves be caught again in the shackles of slavery.