32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” - Jesus. John 8: 23
What does Jesus mean when he says "Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free”?
What is the truth? What is it to be free? I searched for the meaning of freedom and the result was the below;
1 1. The power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants.
2. 2. The state of not being imprisoned or enslaved. Liberation, release, delivery, non- confinement.
To me, I don't think meaning 1 leads to meaning 2, and I don't believe Jesus was talking about the sort of freedom that meaning 1 describes.
When I was 16 years old, I remember that I couldn't wait to be 18. 'Absolute freedom!" I told myself. The freedom to be who I wanted. No more taking orders from my parents, no more having to go to school and doing my homework every night. Eat what I want when I want and live where I wanted to. My friends and I would fantasise about being able to drive anywhere without our parents and being able to legally buy alcohol and drink it where ever, when ever.
But was this really freedom?
I can tell you right now, I took liberty and advantage of every bit of 'freedom' that was credited to me when I turned 18. The end result was not freedom at all. In fact doing all the things that I believed where actions in my freedom brought me captivity and slavery. So how can meaning 1 in the online dictionary also mean the same as option 2?
The result in me exercising my freedom was seeing people hurt and my life shattered. I was a slave to my thoughts and suffered severe anxiety and depression.
The day this all changed was one moment when I was in my room and at the end of my rope. I had tried just about everything this world had to offer to find freedom and happiness but these things led to quite the opposite. So with these results laid before me, I thought I would give one last thing a try. Jesus.
"Jesus, come into my life. Forgive me of my sins because I need God in my life." That's all that I said.
I didn't really understand what I was doing at the time, but I do know that that night I slept like a baby having been getting an average of 4 hours sleep a night over the past few months. When I woke up, something was different. All of a sudden I felt that the load of life was lighter. I couldn't and still can't express the freedom I felt.
36 "So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed."- Jesus. John 8: 36.
Sin will hold you captive. When you realise that you are living in sin and are convicted by the Holy Spirit to believe that Jesus has the ability to set you free from your captivity, because He died on the cross to pay the price that sin demands, and then rose again to show the authority of God over sin and death, you will be born again and born free.
I want to encourage you, once Jesus has set you free, you are both now and forever free. This does not mean you are free to do what ever you want, it means that you are free to live and do as God wants you to. This is not possible when you are still captive to your sin.
I know God enough to know that He wants the best for me and you. More than I could ever hope for or dream about. That He has the ability to deliver me into what is best for me and deliver on His promises. That He knows me better than I know myself and if I listen and do as He asks, if I stop and receive and seek after His love, which is freely given, I will truly, truly be acting out in my freedom.
Because of Jesus I now have the ability to say 'yes' to God and 'no' to sin so as I can receive all that God has for me.
Now, don't think for one minute that if you sin whilst in Christ this ability to still choose God is taken away from you. Confess your sin and try again. Keep chasing that freedom. Sin can no longer separate you from God.
If you want true freedom, believe in Jesus and He will set you free.
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