No. 15: Slave or Free?
“If the Son sets you free, you will indeed be free.” John 8:36 LB.
To be true disciples of the living God, Jesus says here that we must hold fast to His teachings. This means that, having decided to die to what we want, we have no opportunity to back out, even if the going gets tough. Once we have become children of the living God we are not in a position to change our allegiance, even if we are not very well-behaved children! Commitment and “stickability” are so important at all times, but especially in these times. When God has called you, do not turn your back on Him or forget to whom you belong. In any problem, run to Him, in the same way you would like someone to run to you if they had a problem. Work at being a true disciple.
Jesus shows us that in order to be His true disciples, we must abide in the truth, which means: receive it, love it, keep it and walk in it. The person who is free is, in fact, the person who is walking in the power of the Holy Spirit, having made God their Father through the blood of His Son, Jesus. Although we may fall and do something we know we should not do, we have complete cleansing when we turn away from the error, because of the blood of Jesus.
This does not give us freedom to do what we want, but freedom to follow God. As we seek to live for God, Jesus’ perfect truth frees us to be all that God meant us to be. He is the source of truth, the perfect standard of what is right. He frees us from the consequences of sin, from self-deception, and from being deceived by Satan. Sin has a way of enslaving us, controlling us, dominating us, and dictating our actions. Jesus can free us from this slavery that keeps us from becoming the person God created us to be.
If sin is restraining, mastering, or enslaving you, Jesus can break its power over your life.
We have been challenged over the last couple of studies, about being a “hosepipe or drainpipe” and a “light in the darkness”. Let us decide, once and for all, to be completely sold out to the King of Kings and to know the true freedom of being secure in our position in Christ. Let us know that we all have a place in God’s revival at the end of time, to be useful in bringing in the harvest of millions of people. Let us also know that we are free from life-controlling habits and no longer slaves to sin or flesh.
Real freedom is:
- Knowing Jesus and the truth about who He is.
- Having victory over the power of sin, by the inward Holy Spirit.
- Not feeling guilt, or condemnation.
- Instant obedience to God because of His love towards us.
- Serving Christ anywhere, anytime.
- Knowing who you are and accepting who you are.
- Not needing recognition from people – all glory going to God.
- Being yourself in Him – The real you!
- Confidence in knowing that what you are doing is best for everyone.
- Joy in the Presence of God and en‘joy’ing fellowship with other Christians.
- Being thrilled at others’ victories.
- Being determined to keep unity at your own expense.
Real slavery is:
- Life-controlling habits and addictions.
- Inability to stop sinning.
- Having to sin to feel better.
- Hating truth and lying regularly.
- Thinking that the lies of the devil are truth (deception).
- Not seeing need of help.
- Being self-sufficient and stubborn.
- Planning others’ downfall.
- Prejudice – preventing others from believing Jesus.
- Depending upon parents or husbands/partners for our position.
F – Fruitful
R – Righteous – clear conscience
E – Enjoyment
E – Eternal perspective
Choose today to be free
“So Christ has made us free. Now make sure that you stay free, and don’t get all tied up again in the chains of slavery … by the help of the Holy Spirit, we are counting on Christ’s death to clear away our sins and make us right with God. And we to whom Christ has given eternal life don’t need to worry … for all we need is faith working through love.” Galatians 5:1-26 LB.
“No one who obeys Me will ever die!” John 8:51.
Obedience is true freedom. God is our Father. He knows everything about us and is totally motivated by true love. Everything He asks us to do is only for our good. So, we can happily obey and rejoice that He is working in all things for our best, as we work together.
We obey God with…
Our Heart By loving Him more than any other relationship, activity, achievement or possession.
Our Will By committing ourselves completely to Him.
Our Mind By seeking to know Him and His Word, so His principles and values form the foundation of all we think and do.
Our Body By recognising that our strengths, talents, and sexuality are given to us by God to be used for pleasure and fulfilment according to His rules, not ours.
Our Finances By deciding that all of the resources we have ultimately come from God and that we are to be managers of them, not owners.
Our Future By deciding to make service to God and people the main purpose of our life’s work.
John 8:58: “Before Abraham was, I Am.” is one of the most powerful statements uttered by Jesus. He undeniably proclaims His divinity. Not only did Jesus say He existed before Abraham, He also applied God’s holy name to Himself: “I Am”. (Exodus 3:14)
This claim demands a response. It cannot be ignored. Jesus is God.
Have you truly recognised this fact?
Home challenges for Power Up! – No. 15: Slave or Free?
1. Read the notes “Slave or Free”.
a) Do you think you are free?
b) If so, how does this show in your life? Do you pass the “freedom test”?
2. Are you a slave to any bad habit? Would you like prayer to overcome this?
3. Do you find obedience easy? From the notes, “We obey God with…“, which part do you find easier and which do you find harder?
Read John 9:1-12
4. What is the disciples’ opinion of the connection between sickness and sin? (John 9:2)
5. What was Jesus’ reply?
6. From the previous lesson, who does Jesus remind the disciples that He is? (John 9:5)
7. What does Jesus do with dirt to this beggar? What does Jesus require the man to do?
8. What was the man’s reply to the crowds’ question “How were your eyes opened?”
Read John 9:13-34
9. On what grounds do the Pharisees object to this miracle? (John 9:16, 22, 24, 29)
10. What is the reaction of the healed man’s parents? (John 9:19)
11. When considering this man’s second interrogation, what excites you most about his reply to the Pharisees?
12. How do you think this man’s whole life changed?
Read John 9:35-41
13. Why did Jesus look for the man a second time?
14. What was the man’s response to this wonderful revelation? (John 9:38)
15. What will happen to the spiritually blind? (John 9:39-41)
16. a) Choose one verse out of this chapter and memorise it.
b) Try to sum up what you have learnt in one short sentence.