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The Truth Shall Make You Free

by Carey Scott

"So now we call the proud blessed, for those who do wickedness are raised up; they even tempt God and go free" (Malachi 3:15).

The sad situation in Malachi presents an attitude that many people today hang on to.  The people were tired of being restrained in their behavior by the dictates and laws of God.  Once they removed themselves from the restraints of God’s law, they felt a freedom to do as they please.  It is not much different today.  People do not like restraints, and will seek any means to be free from such restraints.

That is why many people reject Jesus Christ and His commandments.  In order to receive the blessings of Christ and God, one must submit to God’s commandments.  It is a matter of restraining oneself in service to God.  As Jesus prayed: “not My will, but Thy will.”

For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness” (Romans 6:20).  As we say, when one continues in sin, they are not bound to the rules of God concerning righteousness.  Many people make up their own rules concerning what they consider right from wrong.  Yet our judge is not ourselves or men. Our final Judge will be God, and God is not going to use our rule books we make for ourselves.  God will use the Bible to judge us.  The words of Jesus will judge us as we read in John 12:48.

So, what does Jesus mean when He says, “you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free” (John 8:32)?  The freedom Jesus is talking about is freedom from the bonds of sin.  One of the things that sin does is to restrain us from reaching out to God.  Sin keeps us in bondage so that we will not want to leave it.  Sin gets a hold of us, and does not want to let go.  And as much as we may want to get away from sin, we cannot do so on our own.  The worst thing is that sin will drag us down to Hell.  While we do have to make the effort to leave sin, we must realize that without Jesus it is impossible.  We must believe that Jesus paid the penalty of our sin, which the bible tells us “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23).  It is through obedience to God’s commands that we can access the one thing that can cleanse us from our sins.  The blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin (I John 1:7).  We access that blood in baptism.  Acts 22:16 tells us that baptism washes away our sins.  So since only the blood of Jesus can wash away sins, our baptism is what contacts that blood for us.  There is no salvation available to mankind before baptism.

Freedom works both ways.  For those who want to be free from sin, they turn to God and Christ, and obey Their commands, and live faithfully all their lives.  For those who want to be free from the restraints of righteousness, they just start sinning and continue sinning.  While some people think they can do some righteousness and get away with sin, or think that some righteousness will make up for the sin, they are wrong.  Any un-repented of sin will keep one out of Heaven. 

To have true freedom in Christ, one must totally subject themselves to God and be diligent to keep as many laws of God as possible, relying upon His grace to make up for what we lack in ourselves.

Do you want to be free from sin?  Come visit with us and let us show you God’s remedy for this problem.  We will teach you what the Bible teaches, and will not rely upon the made up laws of men.

God is not willing that any lose their soul, so He made it possible for us to avoid hell.  However, in order to avoid hell, we must believe in the Christ as the son of God.  We must repent, which means to change the course of our lives and turn towards following God. We must be willing to confess our allegiance to Christ, and be willing to stand up for Him always, and we must be baptized for the remission of our sins.  That will begin our Christian journey through life in which we will need to grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ.