Today’s Scripture: Romans 7:19-25
For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good. For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!
Madam Guyon, the 18th century Christian mystic, lived an incredible life. She influenced several evangelicals including Charles Spurgeon and Watchman Nee. In 1695, she was thrown in prison by the Roman Catholic Church for seemingly heretical postulations. In prison, she meditated on the concept of freedom and penned the following words:
“Stone walls do not a prison make
Nor iron bars a cage;
Minds innocent and quiet take
These for a hermitage;
When I am free within my heart
And in my soul am free
Angels alone that soar above
Enjoy such liberty.”
Few words carry as much weight as freedom does. In fact, freedom has remained one of the most central themes of human existence. Millions have been denied it. Millions more have fought to secure it. And governments (at least, in the modern era) have made it their primary obligation to preserve it. But what really is freedom? A myriad of definitions have been given with the most basic being “the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint.” Of course, the state can create environments that allow for freedom of expression, speech, association, etc, but the state cannot free us from the real shackles of our existence. Paul captures this human dilemma in our opening scripture. In the natural sense, he was a free man, a Roman citizen even. But just like many of us, he was in bondage to his fear, his flesh and his ignorance. He lacked the capacity to live up to his ideals; he lacked the capacity to fulfil his potential.
The same is true of for all mankind. Many are physically free, but their souls, their wills, are in chains. Total freedom, and the peace it brings with it, continues to elude them. Some are financially free but emotionally shackled; others are intellectually liberated but spiritually enslaved. We struggle to live up to the highest of ideals, but fall short of them and into a web of guilt, again and again. It is only in turning to Christ we find absolute freedom. For if the Son sets you free, you shall be free indeed. Only Jesus can give you the power to defy the restraints of fear, depression, ignorance, poverty and death. It is only in Christ we find the freedom to walk in the God’s will. Have you embraced Christ? Then know that you have a passport to a life of genuine and total freedom, an option open to any who would receive the Lord today. For those who have, be reminded today that you are a citizen of the only free Kingdom in the universe, the Kingdom of God. Nothing can hold you back.
Memorise & Meditate:
“Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.” John 8:36
Prayer & Confession:
Lord Jesus, I thank You for dying for me; I thank You for setting me free. I am free because the Son has set me free. I am free to pursue and accomplish the God-ordained plan for my life. Nothing can hold me back, in Jesus’ name. Amen.