On Sunday, July 3, 2022, a great friend of mine, Kerry “Mitch” Mitchell, presented his, “Random Thoughts,” at Mission Blvd Baptist Church in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Brother Mitch has been gifted by God to be able to share some of the most profound thoughts in his short, five-minute messages. (Free To Love; Free To Serve) He made a statement about WHICH freedom was most important—-which you may remember was quoted in last Friday’s devotional:
The human race is the recipient of the greatest freedom…that is, the freedom from sin. ~Bro. Kerry “Mitch” Mitchell
Now, I don’t remember if that’s exactly the way he said it, but that’s what I heard. It’s 100% true and it’s a profound thought. What follows in this devotional is a summary of his “Random Thoughts,” with some of my added commentary…because y’all know I get excited about God’s Word and can’t keep quiet! I pray these thoughts encourage you to grow in your pursuit of Christ!
Man’s original Independence Day was in the Garden of Eden when the human race made the decision that WE would decide what is good and what is evil. It didn’t work out so well, did it? Since then, we’ve all made the same decision. We declare our independence from God; we swear our allegiance to another god; and…enslave ourselves to sin. We desperately try to maintain order in our mind and in our society so we can function amidst the shambles we have created without destroying ourselves or each other. Deep down, we know…
…Freedom requires order; and order requires restraint.
But who has the right to restrain another human? The only kind of restraint that does not contradict freedom, is self-restraint. And yes, we restrain ourselves, but it’s usually only for our own convenience so that we do NOT have to recognize that the deeper problem with freedom is really within our own heart. Our hearts are corrupt, (desperately wicked according to Jeremiah 17:9) and throughout the centuries the sinful bent of man all plays out the same. We are in pursuit of freedom FROM God and His will in our lives. No two people will ever agree on all the rules. Apart from God—the plight of the human race—never ends well.
But—-for those who love Christ, HE is our life.
Jesus has set us free to LOVE and to SERVE Him and each other. The Bible says:
“Knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be DEAD indeed to sin, but ALIVE to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Therefore do NOT let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members [your body] as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.”Romans 6:9-13
“For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you SHINE as lights in the world.”Philippians 2:13-15
“For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.”Galatians 5:13
The only freedom that really matters is the freedom FROM sin through Christ —all other freedoms are merely a subset of this glorious freedom. A life lived free from sin, boils down to Jesus two great commands: Love God and Love others. As we enjoy our MARVELOUS freedom in Jesus Christ, let us walk humbly with God, as we seek to love and serve one another.
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