32. Liberty’s Secret!

Being adopted by God as his child implies absolute and eternal liberty for our lives! However, the very concept of liberty is corrupted from a human perspective, as we have no true point of reference to guide our human thinking into understanding what true liberty is.
There is a great illustration of what was just stated. It is a historical illustration and it pertains to the nation of Israel.
The Bible tells how the nations father, Abraham, was first contacted by God and offered the covenant to be made a father of multitudes. He chose to believe God and begun a journey that took him away from all he knew and trusted and into a pilgrimage that lasted the rest of his earthly life. In the process he learned the principles of the life that would be offered to all human beings and because of his amazing willingness to believe was named by God: “Father of faith” Today, three of the world’s largest religions claim to know and understand this important man, but none really do as they fail to understand and follow his example.
Abraham, as we have said, was taken away from all he knew and trusted in order to make it possible for him to discover another existence. One that was not bound to the rules of humanity, but to the capacity of God to bless, prosper, protect and promote.
Abraham traveled for over half a century. Went through many inhospitable, dangerous, unknown lands and people. But through it all he learned that his existence no longer depended on his abilities, his possessions, or his power and influence; everything about his existence was now the responsibility of the one who had made a covenant with him forever and was able to keep it: God. As a result he prospered immensely and the Bible says he became the wealthiest man of the Orient.

Many years after Abraham’s death, his son Jacob whose name God changed to Israel came to Egypt with his family. He had 12 children, many servants, some of his children were married and many grandchildren. They came because there was a great famine in the earth at the time and Egypt had been spared due to one of his sons wisdom. Joseph had received from God the wisdom, understanding and power to guide the efforts of the greatest empire of the time to prepare for the 7 years of famine that came upon the earth. So when his father Israel came to Egypt, the Pharaoh, Joseph’s boss, welcomed him to his country and made them special permanent guests, giving them some of the best lands of Egypt to live in. They settled there and prospered immensely. They were hard working, intelligent people and soon multiplied from a few into many thousands, then hundreds of thousands and later millions of people.

The Pharaoh which welcomed them into Egypt was of course long dead by the time this happened and so were Israel (Jacob) and Joseph. At a point in time, a new Pharaoh arose in Egypt that had no regard or respect for Joseph and his contribution which saved Egypt from destruction. He did see that Israel had become extremely numerous and with his advisers perceived a threat in them. So he took the decision to enslave them and use their strength and wisdom to his advantage. He was extremely hard on them, and for 430 years him and his descendants use them as they saw fit to enrich their empire.

Israel suffered under the yoke of slavery and groaned their prayers and supplications to a God they didn’t know and learned to doubt. The complete opposite to their progenitor! But in due time God raised a man through whom He would deliver Israel and fulfill a pending part of the covenant He had made with Abraham: Give his descendants all of the land that he had journeyed through his pilgrimage.

Moses was the man that God would use to fulfill his promise. He had been in God’s school of REPENTANCE FROM DEAD WORKS! Moses was a bright, doer kind of a man. At the time of his birth the Pharaoh had ordered all the male born Israelis to be killed at birth, but his parents were able to save him, only to be forced to let him go as he was only a few days old for fear of his and their lives. They placed him on a basket and put him on the river which carried him straight into the Pharaoh’s palace! There the princess discovered him and adopted him! Moses grew up as an Egyptian. Surrounded by wealth and power as he was considered part of the royal family. But the time came when he would find out his true origin and as he saw the suffering of Israel he intended to start doing something about it! What came out of his efforts? DEATH! He killed one of Pharaoh’s guards and had to flee for his life!
40 years later, having no more ambition left in him as he had spent his adult life as a shepherd in the desert of Sinai, God appeared to him and commissioned him to go back to Egypt to deliver Abraham’s family and lead them into the land that had been promised to him as part of the covenant. Moses argued and feared, but God taught him and convinced him that it was not for Moses to do, but to allow God to do through him on Israel’s behalf and somewhat grudgingly he accepted and went.

Through many awesome miracles, God delivered Israel from Egypt without a human war! Moses and his people walked out of Egypt with the Egyptians pleading with them to accept their treasure, their cattle, their expensive clothing, etc.!
After they left Egypt, Pharaoh changed his mind and pursued them with his mighty army to destroy them and bring the survivors back to slavery. But God fought Pharaoh! Israel didn’t have to lift a finger against his enemy. God was present and He is ALL POWERFUL!

Later in their walk, they run out of water. God gave them water in the dessert; enough to satisfy approximatively 2.5 million people and their animals! Then they run out of food. God gave them fresh food every single day! Then they wanted meat instead of the special food they were given; God gave them meat until it came out of their nostrils! It was hot in the dessert during the day; God kept a column of cloud over them that moved as they walked to their destination! Cold at night; God raised a column of fire every night to air condition the dessert for them! Other kings came to fight against them, God defended them!
Amazing no?

No! Not to them! They never saw themselves as free people. Every time something else came up they wanted to return to Egypt! They were all born slaves and that’s how they saw themselves; they had no concept of liberty and could not appreciate or value what was being offered to them.
Many centuries later they would be enslaved again and taken to Babylon, and at the time of Jesus birth they found themselves serving the Roman empire.
All of this sets the framework for us to understand a conversation that took place between Jesus and the Jews recorded in John chapter 8.

“So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
They answered him, “We are offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How is it that you say, ‘You will become free’?”
Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” (John 8:31-36 ESV)

Jesus words directly addressed the human condition. Here he was talking to these very people whose history we have briefly described and they claim: “We have never been enslaved” The amazing thing is that Jesus didn’t argue with them about their slavery to Egypt, or Babylon or the Romans, but instead He spoke to them about adoption as the way to true liberty:
“Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”


How did He proposed to grant this true freedom? Listen to his words:
“If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

Here is the secret of TRUE FREEDOM! Let’s quickly see what is being declared to us by the SON:

1. You abide in my word = You choose to hear and receive and keep hearing and receiving my word
2. You are truly my disciples = You are really letting me teach you the truth about who you are and who my Father is
3. And you will know the truth = I will make you live this truth so that it becomes your reality This is how you will know the truth because it will be your reality!
4. And the truth will set you FREE! = When you discover this reality in your own existence, you will never see yourself as a slave again!

We will talk about this in more detail in our next episode!

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