What’s freedom? Well, freedom.
MARCH 3, 2021
What’s freedom? Well, freedom. Let’s talk about it on Key Life.
This is Key Life here to let Christians know that God isn’t mad at them. Keep listening and you’ll hear that because of what Jesus has done, you’re welcomed home into the family of God, because of his radical grace, free from the penalties of sin and never alone in your suffering.
Thank you Matthew. I spent more time than I meant to on a side road of this particular text we’re studying, Galatians 5:1-12, talking about the fact that Paul says freedom is on a passive state. It’s not just something you enjoy. It’s something you have to hang on to with everything you’ve got. And in that sense, freedom, isn’t free. But in another sense, and then I’m going to really move on. In another sense, freedom is exactly what it says it is. There are those who teach and there’s some truth to this, that when you become a Christian you’re free, but you’re only free to be obedient and you aren’t free to be disobedient. You’re just free to be obedient. I get that. I mean, I am able to love people more, to follow the law a little closer, to si, less in the freedom that Christ has given me. Before I couldn’t do any of those things. Didn’t know how to do those things. And so he has given me freedom, but if you limit freedom to that only, it’s not real freedom. Freedom has gotta be freedom to do just the opposite. We used to steal apples when I was growing up from a man who had two apple trees. And he was not a nice person, when we got caught, we got punished badly, but suppose the man should catch us stealing apples and adopt us. And say, Hey, now you’re the heir. Now you own both of these apple trees and you can have all of the apples that you want, because you’re free. That’s what Jesus has done, he really has. And that’s why if you stay with him, the way the slave girl I told you about yesterday, stayed with Lincoln. That’s good. But if you don’t, that’s good too. It means you’re free to be a obedient or disobedient, to be spiritual or not spiritual. But the truth is, when you’re loved that much, it really does change what goes on inside. But don’t let anybody ever tell you, you’re not free. And that freedom is something other than freedom. It’s not .Okay, that’s all I’m going to say on that. And you’re going to say, well, thank heavens. I was getting tired of it. But let me show you another side road, please note that you can do nothing about your salvation. You can’t add to it. You can’t subtract from it. You can’t make it different than what it is. It is, and it’s settled and you can rest in it with joy. I saw a bumper sticker the other day, it said,
Jesus loves you, but don’t let it go to your head.
Well, I think Jesus loves you, and you should allow it to go to your head, because it’s settled. And it’s settled forever. Listen to what Paul said, Galatians 5:5-6.
For through the spirit, by faith, we wait for the hope of righteousness. For in Christ Jesus, neither circumcision
And you can read there parenthetically, being good and kind,and wise and loving and gentle and obedient and nice.
For in Christ, none of that or not doing any of that is of any avail, but faith working through love.
In other words, Paul is saying that your hope is simply a matter of waiting until it’s finally fulfilled. If you try to do anything to make that hope more secure or bigger or better, or you don’t do anything to have that happen, it’s of no avail. It just is. You know, there’s some things you can’t add to, in order to make them more than they are. For instance, March is March. You can’t add days to March in order to make the month different than it is. There are just so many days in March. And if you take one day from December and add it to March, it doesn’t become something better for March. It just is. For instance, you can’t become more married than you are right now, if you’re married. By going through another ceremony or getting another preacher to marry you or being more spiritual, you’re either married or you’re not married. You can’t add to it and you can’t subtract from it. For instance, you can’t add to pregnancy and become more pregnant. You can’t add to ordination, and become more ordained. You can’t add, well to maleness or femaleness, despite what people say, it just is. And your salvation is that too. I’ll tell you, once you get that, it does play into your freedom. What if you couldn’t do anything? Once you’re his, you’re his. Paul said this,
I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me.
That is not an item for petition. It is a statement of fact. That’s who you are. When, when you came to him and he forgave you, you’re forgiven. You’re saved. You’re his. Deal with it. You think about that. Amen.
Thank you Steve. That was Steve Brown, continuing to lead us in our guided tour of Galatians 5. We’ll continue from right here tomorrow. Do hope you’ll join us. Well, Easter is now about a month away and with Easter comes Easter services and Easter clothes, maybe even some Easter candy, but hopefully this Easter also comes with some questions. For example, why exactly did Jesus have to die? Couldn’t there have been another way. If Jesus had lived to a ripe old age wouldn’t he have had more time to teach us. Well, Steve has addressed these very questions in a sermon called Why Jesus Had to Die. Take a listen. Then I’ll be back to tell you about a special free offer. Here’s Steve,
When you’re old, you forget names, but you remember the tears and the pain. I was a young pastor. It was three o’clock in the morning when I got the call and I rushed to the home of a family that I loved. And the flames were coming out of the roof. They all escaped except the father. I remember the teenage girl, as she saw me coming, ran into my arms and wept. And I remember what she said. She said, pastor, why did my father have to die? It was years later in Boston, I probably was saved. I just didn’t know Jesus. When another teenage girl in my study said, Mr. Brown, I don’t understand why did Jesus have to die? You know what I did, I gave her a book cause I wasn’t exactly sure, but I never saw those teenage girls. I don’t remember their names. I keep thinking that maybe they’re grown now with their children and they’ll be in some conference where I’m teaching. Maybe in a church service like this one, cause I’ve found some answers and I would like to share them with them. I was invited back to that first church for their hundredth anniversary and always wanted to go there, because I found some things that I didn’t know, when I was serving as their pastor. It was a little church and you visited a hospital. It was never more than one there. And then you could fish and play golf the rest of the time. All they wanted you to do was talk for 15 minutes and I’ve always been able to do that. So I’d stand in a pulpit, talk for 15 minutes and then Jesus came and screwed it up. He’s been doing that with my life, but I always said, Lord, let me go back and tell him the truth. I got to go back. And I said, I know what I taught you. And I know what I said. And, but listen carefully, because I’ve got some corrections to make, but let me tell you, there were a thousand crosses. Jesus wasn’t the only, there are people who died with more pain and suffering than Jesus ever experienced. That’s not the issue. It wasn’t the length of the pain. It was the person who faced the pain. It wasn’t a little Jewish rabbi hanging, spread eagle on crossbeams on the town garbage heap. It was God entering time and space. Then you go, whew. I can’t believe that I, God did that for me. You gonna die. Most of you, it’s going to be a quiet slipping away. Some of you are going to struggle. And if it’s commensurate with sins, I’m going to die in great pain. Cause I, cause I’m good and home and it’ll be over, but a lot of people die. We all die. Big deal. But when the eternal, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient God of the universe enters time and space and hangs spread eagle on crossbeams, between two thieves. That is something else. He did. The Cross. Why? Why did he have to die? Couldn’t it be good to have done it another way? It seems to me reasonable. I think that teenager had it right. He could only longer and loved us more and taught us more profoundly. I mean, we could have understood the answers to our questions. If he just stayed around. How come he died so soon. We got four little books and that’s all, we ought to have volumes and volumes, as John said, Well, I don’t know? He could have, why didn’t he have to die? Well, I got four or five reasons, I’m going to share with you very quickly.
And you will hear those reasons when you get this full sermon on CD for free. How? Just call us right now at 1-800-KEY-LIFE. That’s 1-800-539-5433. You can also drop an email to Steve@keylife.org and ask for the CD. By mail, send your request to
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