The Bare Soul - July 4, 2010
God's Freedom

Galatians 5:1 - It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.

Much is spoken regarding our individual freedoms in western civilization. Probably no other day is quite like America's Independence Day, when we celebrate both our country's liberty from tyranny and our own individual emancipation from oppressive government. Even our songs herald this great land as the "Home of the Free and the Brave". However, day by day we see these freedoms being encroached upon by secular socialist agendas that would seek to drown us in a sea of government restraints. Taxation is at its highest level in most states of the Union, while fringe groups who insist upon their "rights" infringe upon the moral majority's rights to live as godly, respectable citizens. Never before in the history of this nation have we seen the rights of the godless upheld in such a demonstrative manner, while the lives of the innocent continue to be exploited through mass murder. As the greatest genocide ever perpetrated on American soil continues (nearing the 50 million mark of murdered babies since Roe v Wade), homosexuals continue to chip away at the American fabric by insisting on the same familial rights as heterosexuals. God weeps as the devil rejoices over making a mockery of the Almighty's design for humans on planet earth, and particularly in the United States. We have fallen from the height of arrogance in believing that tolerance towards the ungodly is granting them individual freedoms. As we succumb to the desires of those who mock and jeer at a holy God, we only share in their sin. The fall of America continues while we don't even know we are falling. The ultimate impact, however, will be heard around the world.

Slavery comes in various ways and forms. The national disgrace of this country's pre-civil war was slavery. Today, there is a more subtle bondage. The sad reality is that man will always try to enslave or he will be enslaved by others, outside of the grace of God. Only through humble submission to the Lord God will someone find a place of sonship, rather than slavery. As Paul told the Galatians, the whole reason that Christ set humankind free was so they could experience true freedom. While atheists spout continually the need for the separation of church and state (which, by the way, is NOT in the Constitution but was penned in a letter expressing an opinion by Thomas Jefferson to John Adams in 1814), they don't comprehend that true freedom ONLY comes through the unity created by a strong church that influences the tenants of government. A nation is never greater than what we are collectively. If we continue to force the issues of supposed individual liberties in this nation, we will soon see its demise. More than self actualization of liberties, we desperately need individual revival -- an understanding of who God is and what He desires to free within us all. Only as we come into relationship with Jesus Christ, one soul at a time, will this country once again know the freedom that it touts. As long as self-serving agenda-seeking splinter groups are allowed to function as the voice of America, we will continue to see the downward spiral of wickedness and depravity that is overtaking this nation.

Outward, individual freedom can only come from the inside as God has His way with a man, woman, or child. To the degree that we are free inside from the tyranny of sin is the degree that we can be free in all areas of our lives. To attempt to impose freedom, whether it is Socialism on the left or Fascism on the right, is attempting to legislate morality. It will never work, from either side of the proverbial sphere. What will work, however, is men and women sold out to Christ and not subjecting themselves to the bondage of idealism. Man's vision will always be full of corruption and self-serving, but God's vision and desires for humankind will be full of moral restraint that is born in heaven. It will be guidance through the Holy Spirit that will be full of love and compassion toward others, but at the same time not bending to any that would seek to usurp God's perfect plan. Even as the Galatians were led astray by a spirit of legalism, believing they could DO something for their salvation, we must be careful in this great nation to not attempt to save ourselves. Conservatives, as well as liberals, are subject to massive failure without the Spirit of God upon their lives. We have seen both parties in this country succumb to ungodliness as they rejected God's leading. We must have revival! We must cry for it even as Rachel cried for offspring, saying that she despised living unless God would grant her request (Genesis 30:1). That, beloved, should be our attitude as believers. We should desire that at all costs we would know the freedom of God within, so that we can collectively change our nation as an army of the Lord that will not be denied. Passing legislation to thwart an onslaught of godliness is commendable, but it is only a Band-Aid on gangrene that will eventually kill us. What we desperately need is a body of believers that will first reconcile within their souls their own freedoms and liberties granted to them by Jesus Christ. Then, we need to rise up and invoke His freedom by a wide-spread revival within this glorious land. Only as we see and understand through His glorious revelation (Ephesians 1:17-19), will we be able to "be fruitful and to multiply" His freedom to a nation.

As stated, slavery comes in many forms, both inward and outward. The Galatians were deluded into thinking that working hard for their salvation meant they would secure it. Paul was quick to point out that true freedom comes ONLY in trusting the Savior's completed work. Are we ready to stand up for Jesus in this perilous time? Are we ready to declare the freedom of the Lord to a nation that is quickly despairing of life? The abundant liberty is only for those who wish to give up their own self-seeking and follow Him that gave them true freedom. It is up to us this day -- shall we continue to give ourselves to "me" or shall we give ourselves to "Thee"? There will be no lasting freedom without making the right choice,  in this land we call the "Home of the Free and the Brave". God help us to be free through our courage to give ourselves unreservedly to Him.

O Lord, "Our Country 'tis of Thee", even as the song states. But we have fallen so far from You, Lord. Give us hearts of fire that yearn after You. Then, help us to take these hearts aflame and to awaken a country that is on the precipice of destruction. Give us hearts of freedom that we can awaken the hearts of others and cause a great revival that will indeed change not only the government but the very fabric of our society. Help us, Lord. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Your Barefoot Servant,

Rick

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