DID JESUS LOVE HIS MOTHER?

JOHN 19:25-27: “Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple he loved standing there, he said to his mother, “Woman, here is your son.” Then he said to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his home.” CSB

OBSERVATION: Did Jesus love His earthly mother? Some have questioned Jesus’ love for His mother because of a misunderstanding of the following Scripture;

  • “While he was still speaking with the crowds, his mother and brothers were standing outside wanting to speak to him. Someone told him, “Look, your mother and your brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you.” He replied to the one who was speaking to him, “Who is my mother and who are my brothers?” Stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.” Matthew 12:46-50 CSB

Was Jesus dismissing His own mother? If there was ever a question as to Jesus’ love for His mother, it was answered once and for all as He hung upon the cross. Beaten near death, exhausted, nailed to a Roman cross, in extreme agony, Jesus took the time and energy to make sure His own mother was taken care of after His death, resurrection, and ascension. In such a loving act of sacrifice He said to His mother, and to John;

  • “Woman, here is your son.” Then he said to the disciple, “Here is your mother.”

The text says that from that very hour John took Mary into his home and cared for her. Jesus fulfilled the entire law, including the Fourth Commandment;

  • “Honor your father and your mother so that you may have a long life in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.” Exodus 20:12 CSB

As a teenager, filled with angst and confusion, I fell short of honoring my mother. When I gave my life to Christ, one of the first things the Lord dealt with me about was my attitude and actions toward my mother. I had to repent before my mother and before the Lord. It became my life’s goal to honor my mother. I thank the Lord for each and every day I had with her.

I will never forget the last moments of my mother’s life. Karen and I stood at her bedside singing hymns. She lay motionless, her breathing was shallow, her eyes closed. We could not tell whether she could hear us or not. I whispered in her ear – “Mom, I love you. It’s alright to go now. Jesus is waiting for you.” A few moments later my mother’s eyes opened wide. She was not looking at me, she was gazing up into heaven. It was more than a mere neurological response. She was seeing something. She stared intently for a while, then closed her eyes. Less than an hour later she was with Jesus.

There is no one in the world who loves like a mother. She loves us in spite of ourselves. Her heart aches and longs for us. She desires only the best for our lives. She is selfless and giving. She is worthy of honor. When a child is born they cut the umbilical cord. Yet, there is a cord that can never be cut. It is the cord of a mother’s heart that is connected to her children. She loves until the day she takes her last breath. She is worthy of honor!

Jesus loved His mother. We should love and honor ours. We should include her in our life. We should remember her in our busy schedules. We should give her a call, spend time with her, and consider each and every day all the wonderful things she has done for us. We should remember that her heart is always connected to ours. When we hurt, she hurts. When we celebrate, she rejoices. When we fail, she is there to put her arms around us and restore us. She is worthy of honor!

Lord, I thank you for the wonderful legacy of my mother. I remember her song in the kitchen, her joy as she cared for her family, and her love for her friends. She was always kind, always gentle, always forgiving. Thank you for the blessed assurance that I will one day be reunited with her in Your presence.

In Jesus Name!

Posted in John | 1 Comment

AM I RUNNING FROM THE LORD?

PSALMS 32:1-2: “How joyful is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered! How joyful is a person whom the Lord does not charge with iniquity and in whose spirit is no deceit!” CSB

OBSERVATION: Am I walking in the blessing of forgiveness? Is my life marked by joy and freedom? Or, am I struggling under the conviction of the Holy Spirit because I am hiding from God, and from my sin? Am I running from the Lord?

There is a difference between conviction and condemnation. Paul makes it very clear in Romans 8:1-2;

  • Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus, because the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and death.” Romans 8:1-2 CSB

This verse starts with the word “therefore.” It follows Paul’s understanding of his fallen nature, the power of sin, and that his only hope of redemption and freedom from this power is Jesus Christ our Lord.

  • “For in my inner self I delight in God’s law, but I see a different law in the parts of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and taking me prisoner to the law of sin in the parts of my body. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, with my mind I myself am serving the law of God, but with my flesh, the law of sin.” Romans 7:22-25 CSB

If we break this thought down, we will realize that, although the power of condemnation (being under the judgment and wrath of God) has been broken by faith in Jesus Christ, there is still an ongoing battle with sin and our broken nature. If we continue to yield our lives in faith to Jesus Christ, there is a continual outpouring of forgiveness and freedom. However, if we begin to run from the grace that so wonderfully set us free, we enter into the battle again, and will experience the power of conviction.

Conviction is the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives calling us back to the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. In the Gospel of John, Jesus proclaims;

  • “Nevertheless, I am telling you the truth. It is for your benefit that I go away, because if I don’t go away the Counselor will not come to you. If I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world about sin, righteousness, and judgment: About sin, because they do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see me; and about judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged.” John 16:7-11 CSB

David experienced this work in his life when he ignored his sin, and when he began to wander away from the Lord. In God’s faithfulness the Spirit began to bring conviction upon David’s life to draw him back to the Lord.

  • “When I kept silent, my bones became brittle from my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy on me; my strength was drained as in the summer’s heat. Selah”. Psalms 32:3-4 CSB

Have you ever wondered why you were able to sin without any thought before you believed in Jesus Christ? But now, when you do the same thing that once brought you a feigned joy, all you experience is a heaviness and sorrow. The more we run away from the Lord, the heavier His hand of conviction rests upon our lives. This is really His love in action. He is jealous over our lives and love. We cannot find peace and joy when we are running from the Lord.

We can run from the Lord by sinning, or by ignoring His call upon our lives. In essence, both are sin. They are both acts of disobedience. One to His command, the other to His call. When you study Scripture you will discover that running from the Lord never ends up well for the child of God. He or she will either experience the grief and anguish that David was experiencing, or they will be swallowed up by a great fish (the circumstances and challenges of life), as Jonah was. Once you have tasted the joy of forgiveness, you will never again be satisfied with the feigned joy of sin.

The good news is – God loves us. He does not reject us, even in our rebellion or sin. He works in our life through the conviction of the Holy Spirit to bring us back to Him. And just as it took a simple act of faith to be forgiven the first time, it is the same act of faith we must exercise when we find ourselves estranged from the Lord and in the grips of conviction. David writes;

  • “Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not conceal my iniquity. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,” and you forgave the guilt of my sin. Selah”. Psalms 32:5 CSB

The Apostle John echoes the same truth;

  • “If we say, “We have no sin,” we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:8-9 CSB

Like the Prodigal Son, so many today are wallowing in the pig troughs of regret and condemnation. It is easy to listen to the enemy’s accusations about our personal unworthiness in this situation. But the truth remains – “There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus!” This does not mean there is no sin. It simply means that the sentence of death has been removed, and the Jesus stands ready to forgive and cleanse our lives when we repent. The decision is ours. Will we wallow in the pig trough, or will we run to the Father?

I know the joy of forgiveness, and I know the misery of living in a backslidden condition. The Lord has been faithful in my life to allow the conviction of the Holy Spirit to weigh heavily upon my life until I repented. He has restored my life, and the joy of my salvation. I am here to proclaim – it is not too late! You are not condemned! You don’t have to remain in pain and the broken state you might find yourself in! Lift up your eyes – the Father is waiting for your return with open arms. Like David, confess your sin and receive the wonderful forgiveness of the Lord! Don’t wait any longer!

  • Therefore let everyone who is faithful pray to you immediately. When great floodwaters come, they will not reach him. You are my hiding place; you protect me from trouble. You surround me with joyful shouts of deliverance. Selah”. Psalms 32:6-7 CSB

Lord, hear the cry of my heart. I run to You this morning. Forgive my sin. Heal my heart. Restore my joy. Surround me with Your faithful love.

In Jesus Name!

Posted in Psalms | 1 Comment

EVERYBODY NEEDS A KING!

JUDGES 21:25: “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did whatever seemed right to him.” CSB

OBSERVATION: Is it possible to live without a king? This may seem like a strange question for an American to contemplate. We don’t have a king. Or do we? One of the most sobering verses in Scripture is the closing verse in the book of Judges,

  • “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did whatever seemed right to him.”

If there is a verse that could sum up the current culture in America, I think this would be the one. No one wants a king. Yet, everyone wants the benefits of a kingdom. Everyone want to do their own thing, and at the same time reap all the benefits of a kingdom. One cannot take place in exclusion of the other.

Everyone needs a king!

God’s design for the nation of Israel was that He would be their King. They were not to be like other nations. They were not to look to a man as their source of provision and safety. They were to look to the Lord. When the Lord rescued Israel from Egypt, He gave them Moses to lead them. Yet Moses was not really their leader. Moses was the intermediary between Yahweh and the nation of Israel. Moses simply received the commands of the King and communicated them to the people.

When Moses died, Joshua took his place. The nation of Israel remained faithful during Joshua’s life, and a short time beyond. Yet, it did not take long until they cast off their need for a leader and decided that each one of them was capable of leading themselves. The book of Judges is the sorry cyclical story of this bad decision.

  • “The Israelites did what was evil in the Lord’s sight; they forgot the Lord their God and worshiped the Baals and the Asherahs. The Lord’s anger burned against Israel, and he sold them to King Cushan-rishathaim of Aram-naharaim, and the Israelites served him eight years. The Israelites cried out to the Lord. So the Lord raised up Othniel son of Kenaz, Caleb’s youngest brother, as a deliverer to save the Israelites. The Spirit of the Lord came on him, and he judged Israel. Othniel went out to battle, and the Lord handed over King Cushan-rishathaim of Aram to him, so that Othniel overpowered him. Then the land had peace for forty years, and Othniel son of Kenaz died.” Judges 3:7-11 CSB

This is the story of the first judge in Israel after Joshua’s death. The cycle is repeated judge after judge. Israel rebelled against God as their King and worshipped other gods. God’s anger was then directed against Israel and he allowed other nations to defeat and persecute them. Israel then cried out to the Lord to deliver them. God in His mercy sent a judge that led them to victory. And a period of peace followed their deliverance, until they allowed the cycle to begin all over again. Israel wanted the peace and prosperity of the Lord, but they did not want to allow Him to be King.

Everyone needs a king!

In fact, everyone does have a king. Whoever, or whatever you serve, is your king. Paul makes this very clear in the book of Romans.

  • “What then? Should we sin because we are not under the law but under grace? Absolutely not! Don’t you know that if you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of that one you obey — either of sin leading to death or of obedience leading to righteousness?” Romans 6:15-16 CSB

Notice, Paul makes it clear, everyone has a king. Whoever, or whatever we serve, we become a slave to. And whatever we become a slave to, we become. If we serve our own selfish desires, we become a slave to them. They become our king. And the ultimate outcome of serving sin, self, or the devil is death. However, if your honor God as King, if you serve Him, you become a slave to His love. And the ultimate outcome of serving the Lord is freedom, righteousness, and life – both abundant and eternal!

By surrendering to the Lord as our King, we become free. By casting off all restraint and doing whatever we want, we become bound. Bob Dylan, in a song he wrote years ago, makes it very clear.

But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes

Indeed you’re gonna have to serve somebody

Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord

But you’re gonna have to serve somebody

While I don’t know what is in Bob Dylan’s heart, from outward appearances it looks like he has followed the cycle of the nation of Israel in the book of Judges. Yet, the words in the chorus of this song still ring true. You are going to serve somebody. And when you distill it down to the very purest of choices, in reality it is only a choice between the devil or the Lord. Everybody is serving one of the two.

Everybody needs a king!

Lord, this morning I desire to make You the King of my life! I recommit my life to You. I ask You to search me deep within. Show me any areas where I have begun to follow the cycle of brokenness in the book of Judges. Help me to surrender all to you. Give me the grace to be a servant of righteousness. Be the King of my life!

In Jesus Name!

Posted in Judges | Leave a comment

GOD IS INVESTED IN ME!

PSALM 23:3: “He renews my life; he leads me along the right paths for his name’s sake.” CSB

OBSERVATION: God is invested in me! What a wonderful truth and comfort as I face each day. He is my Good Shepherd. He is not a hired hand, but the true shepherd of the sheep. He cares for me intimately each day – “…for His name’s sake.”

Psalm 23 is such a wonderful psalm. It is something that we can spend a lifetime meditating on. And it is something that we can read each day in just a moment to remind us how much God loves us. Here are the wonderful truths from this great psalm.

Because the Lord is my Shepherd, because He is invested in me, “…for His name’s sake,” –

• He provides me with everything I need.

• He brings rest to me when I am weary.

• He refreshes my soul in His presence.

• He renews my life each day by His grace.

• He helps me make the right decisions each day.

• He leads me through the darkest valleys of life.

• He protects and comforts me.

• He vindicates me before the enemy.

• He pours out His Holy Spirit upon my life.

• He gives me life and life abundantly.

• He pursues me with His goodness and faithful love.

• He prepares a place for me in heaven.

• He receives me into eternal life with Him.

When you reflect on these wonderful truths you too can say with the psalmist – “The Lord is my shepherd; I have what I need.“. He will never leave us or forsake us. When trouble arises, He arises with His rod and staff. When need arises, He arises with His bountiful provision. And when death knocks at our door, He answers the door with eternal life.

Lord, help me take time this morning to meditate upon the wonderful promises in this psalm. Let Your demonstrative love for me undergird me through this day. Whenever I am troubled, remind me that You are always with me. You are my Shepherd!

In Jesus Name!

Posted in Psalms | Leave a comment

HOW DO YOU SEE YOURSELF?

JOHN 11:38-44: “Then Jesus, deeply moved again, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. “Remove the stone,” Jesus said. Martha, the dead man’s sister, told him, “Lord, there is already a stench because he has been dead four days.” Jesus said to her, “Didn’t I tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?” So they removed the stone. Then Jesus raised his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you heard me. I know that you always hear me, but because of the crowd standing here I said this, so that they may believe you sent me.” After he said this, he shouted with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out bound hand and foot with linen strips and with his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unwrap him and let him go.” CSB

OBSERVATION: How do I see myself? What is limiting my life? What perceptions do I have of myself that I have allowed the world to define? When I look in the mirror what do I see? Do I see a child of God with unlimited potential, or a broken man bound by his own failure and personal limitations?

The story of Lazarus is a story about perception and reality. There are always two realities at play in our life. There is the perceived reality, and there is the true reality. It is hard for us to discern between the two. And if we are not careful, we will embrace the wrong reality. We need to learn to discern the perceived reality from the true. The true reality is how Jesus views our life.

In the story of Lazarus the only one who saw beyond the perceived reality was Jesus. When Jesus told his disciples that Lazarus had fallen asleep, they did not understand His words. Jesus spoke of his death, but spoke of it in a temporary way. Jesus knew He was being sent by the Father to raise Lazarus from the dead. When Jesus told Martha that Lazarus would rise again from the dead, Martha perceived He was talking only of the resurrection. And when Jesus asked where they had laid Lazarus, the crowd that followed Mary mocked Him in their hearts.

When Jesus beheld their unbelief, when He discerned their hardness of heart, when He beheld the grief of Mary and Martha, He was both filled with compassion and anger. And when Jesus beheld the tomb where Lazarus had been placed, with the stone rolled into place – “Jesus wept.”

I believe Jesus weeps whenever He looks over His children that have been bound by the perceptions they hold of themselves, or that they have allowed others or the wisdom of this world to place upon them. Jesus looked upon Lazarus as one who was destined to show forth God’s glory. Everyone else looked at Lazarus as one who was dead. And Martha, completely bound by her perception of Lazarus’ death, saw a life that was beyond any hope. It had been 4 days. His body was now in decay. It was beyond hope.

Yet, there is no life that is beyond hope in the Lord. There is no sin, no failure, no self imposed perception, and no declaration of unworthiness by others that can limit the power of God’s grace. The story of Lazarus is a story of the power of redemption. It is not simply a story of a miracle. It is a profound declaration that every perceived concept we hold about ourselves can be broken and redeemed by the grace of God.

  • “After he said this, he shouted with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out bound hand and foot with linen strips and with his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unwrap him and let him go.”

Notice the contrast between God’s perception, and the perception of everyone else. Jesus saw God’s purposes in Lazarus. Jesus treated Lazarus as one destined for glory. He did not perceive him as dead and decayed, but as one sleeping, only to be awakened by God’s grace. Everyone else treated Lazarus as a dead man, without hope, and no remaining purpose. They bound Lazarus in grave clothes to proclaim their perception and understanding. And they laid him in a tomb. Jesus proclaimed – “Lazarus, come out!” And Jesus did not stop there. He also proclaimed – “Unwrap him and let him go.”

The Lord desires to both raise us up and set us free. He wants to deliver us from all the false perceptions of our life that we have placed on ourselves, and that we have allowed others to wrap around us. We may have heard these perceptions so long that we believe them. However, they are simply grave clothes that need to be removed. They are keeping us from walking in the new life that the Lord has called us to. Jesus looks at our life and commands – “Unwrap him and let him go.”

Lord, this morning my heart breaks for all those who have embraced a false perception of their lives. It is not the reality of how You see them. It is the lie that has been wrapped around them. They are alive, but bound by these false perceptions. I pray that they will hear Your voice cry out – “_____________________ come out!” And I pray that they will yield to the gentle ministry of the Holy Spirit who desires to unwrap them from the grave clothes of these false perceptions.

Lord, set us free by Your mighty power!

In Jesus Name!

Posted in John | Leave a comment

ACHIEVING YOUR HEART’S DESIRES…

PSALM 20:4: “May he give you what your heart desires and fulfill your whole purpose.” CSB

OBSERVATION: What is my purpose in life? What is my heart’s desire? As I look over my life I see that the answer to these questions have changed quite dramatically. One of the benefits of getting older is the extended view you have from the rear view mirror. It is in this view that you gain some perspective and understanding.

I love the promises of God’s Word. Yet, I am careful not to hang my hat on one isolated verse of Scripture. This is one of those promise verses that can give us great hope, and also get us into trouble if we are not careful. The part that can get us into trouble is our heart.

The heart is a fickle thing. It is probably the most unreliable factor in determining God’s will and direction in our life. Why is that? It is because we have difficulty discerning between the thoughts and the intents of the heart. An old saying goes, “The heart knows what the heart wants.” This may be true, but why does the heart want what it wants? How many times have I gone done the wrong path because I was listening to what my heart wanted.

So, if the heart is so unreliable in determining the direction of our life, why would the Lord proclaim this promise in Psalm 20:4? What is the context of – “May He give you what your heart desires and fulfill your whole purpose.”? The context is found in the preceding verses.

  • “May the Lord answer you in a day of trouble; may the name of Jacob’s God protect you. May he send you help from the sanctuary and sustain you from Zion. May he remember all your offerings and accept your burnt offering. Selah”. Psalms 20:1-3 CSB

The context of this promise for the heart is threefold. It is surrender, worship, and offering.

  • “May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble…”

When we come to the Lord in times of trouble we come in a position of weakness and surrender. It is usually when we have exhausted all of our efforts and finally realize that He is our only source of help and supply. This surrender is humility in action. We come to Him empty, needing to be filled. We come to Him broken, needing to be healed. We come to Him with a heart that is seeking His will.

  • “May He send you help from the sanctuary and sustain you from Zion…”

David recognized that all of his help came from the Lord. However, his writings were very specific. David cried, “May He send you help from the sanctuary, and sustain you from Zion.” This was the place of God’s presence. This was the center of worship. This was holy ground. The very ground where God met with man. It is when we come to Him in humility, and position ourselves before Him in worship, that we are prepared to hear His voice.

  • “May he remember all your offerings and accept your burnt offering.”

Worship was not complete without sacrifice. In the Old Testament this was an animal sacrifice, or the sacrifice of some form of burnt offering. The humble and worshipful heart was called to express itself in an act of obedience through sacrifice. In the New Testament our sacrifice is much different. We are the sacrifice.

  • “Therefore, brothers and sisters, in view of the mercies of God, I urge you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God; this is your true worship. Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.” Romans 12:1-2 CSB

And within the act of sacrifice we find the key to the promise in Psalm 20:4. Our humility brings us to God. Our worship positions our hearts before God. But, our sacrifice surrenders our will and our actions to God. When we present our entire lives as living sacrifices, we do so to yield our lives to His will and purposes. Our worship is not complete without this sacrifice. And it is in this sacrifice that we discover His heart, and in discovering His heart, we discover ours.

It is the renewed heart and mind that receives the promise of Psalms 20:4.

  • “May he give you what your heart desires and fulfill your whole purpose.”

The question is no longer – “What does my heart want?” The question is now, “What does His heart want?” His desires become my desires. His will becomes my will. His purpose becomes my purpose. And a wonderful thing happens when this exchange takes place. I finally discover my true destiny and enter into the fullness of joy for my life.

This morning Lord I come to You in full surrender. I humble my heart before You, and prostrate myself in worship. I bring my entire life to You as a living sacrifice. Please accept my heart. Pour out Your desires and make them mine. Help me to fulfill Your entire purpose for my life.

In Jesus Name!

Posted in Psalms | 1 Comment

AM I REALLY FREE?

JOHN 8:31-36: “Then Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you continue in my word, you really are my disciples. You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” “We are descendants of Abraham,” they answered him, “and we have never been enslaved to anyone. How can you say, ‘You will become free’?” Jesus responded, “Truly I tell you, everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin. A slave does not remain in the household forever, but a son does remain forever. So if the Son sets you free, you really will be free.” CSB

OBSERVATION: What does it mean to live in freedom? Is it to live in the United States of America? Is it freedom of choice, or to do what I please? What is freedom anyway?

It is a wonderful thing to live in a country that affords one personal liberties. To be able to travel where you want, or to pursue whatever path in life you desire, is truly a blessing. This type of freedom is not experienced by the majority of the world. Yet, even with these liberties, one can still be be living without freedom. We can be slaves to sin, to attitudes, to unforgiveness, fear, doubt, and sorrow, just to name a few. Even though we live under the banner of freedom, we can still be a captive.

True freedom is not the ability to do whatever you want. True freedom is the ability to say no to the things you do not want. It is to break the bonds of sin. It is to overcome attitudes that limit us and others. It is be be set free from unforgiveness, fear, and doubt. It is to be healed from overwhelming sorrow that cripples us. It is to live unfettered within. To live free within the human soul is true freedom.

How do we do this? Jesus gives us both the positive and the negative. The Jews who heard Him were astounded that He was calling them to freedom. They were not slaves. They were children of Abraham. Yet, they were slaves. They were in reality under Roman occupation, and they were blinded by their unbelief and sin. Therefore, Jesus tells them,

  • “Truly I tell you, everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin. A slave does not remain in the household forever, but a son does remain forever.”

Whatever we serve, we become a slave to. If we serve the Lord, we become a slave in love unto Him. If we serve sin or self, we become a slave to it. One leads to death, the other to life. The paradox of this truth is amazing to behold. When one resists the Lord because they want to be “free,” they become enslaved to their own sin and brokenness. When one submits to the Lord, and out of love becomes a slave in obedience to Him, they are set free. One is bound by his freedom. One is set free by his servitude. It is a great paradox indeed!

Jesus said,

  • “If you continue in my word, you really are my disciples. You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

It is not just the Word that sets us free, it is our continuance in the Word. As we grow and obey Jesus’ words we discover the truth. And as we discover the truth, we are set free. When we take His yoke upon us, we are not burdened down with rules and regulations, we are emancipated to live life to its fullest. What the world views as binding is actually that which set us free. And this freedom is powerful!

  • “So if the Son sets you free, you really will be free.”

It is a good exercise to check and see if we are really living in freedom. Are we free to say no to sin? Are we free to forgive others? Are we free to love without any strings attached? Are we free to give our finances to the work of the Lord and to help the poor? Are we free to live victoriously over fear? Are we free to not be defined by our past? Are we free to accept our place in life? Are we free to be content? Are we free to rejoice in the sufferings of life?

We could be locked up in prison and still be free. True freedom is not determined by our outward circumstances. True freedom is determined by the condition of our heart. True freedom only comes through Jesus Christ, and it only grows as we continue in His Word.

  • “If you continue in my word, you really are my disciples. You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

Lord, this morning, help me to run to You. Help me to take Your yoke upon me. Teach me Your ways. Set me free. Set me free, indeed!

In Jesus Name!

Posted in John | Leave a comment