Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. (2 Corinthians 3:17 ESV)
In Christ, we are no longer slaves to sin or fear. We are not bound by the penalty of death because Jesus paid the debt himself. And he defeated death when God the Father raised him back to life, fulfilling the plan to redeem and save us.
There are many occasions recorded in the the Bible when God executed his judgments and delivered on his promises. These acts were done so that everyone would know that he is the Lord. He did not have to prove his credibility. Yet, with great patience and mercy he performed signs and wonders to teach the world once more that he is the only One True God.
It is through freedom that a genuine relationship can be formed between us and God. He doesn’t force himself on us because he wants us to voluntarily give our hearts over to him. And for that reason, it is my belief that love cannot be coerced out of anyone. The strictest rules and laws will never change us. Even the harshest consequences for violating them cannot prevent bad behavior.
This is why the work of Jesus is necessary. He is the only one that can transform us from the inside out. The chains and shackles that bound us to hell were broken the day we surrendered ourselves him. Our freedom from death was granted and we can now live out our faith in confident and daring ways that honor the Lord.
With that freedom we are no longer captives to worry, anxiety, and fear. We don’t have to covet resources or do things out of envy because the Lord supplies our needs. We don’t have to defend our names and reputations because our God does the fighting for us and administers perfect justice. We don’t have to protect our jobs because he will give us another one. And if we are battling health issues, we know that he will heal us on earth or in heaven. We don’t have to wonder if we are good enough because in Christ we are already sufficient and we are loved by him!
This is not a passive faith, but an active one because we are supposed to walk with him. Like the author of Proverbs says, the Lord will “make straight our paths” as long as we are connected with him. Under his freedom we can experience a fuller life, understanding the vast differences between joy and sorrow, where both are used to build and strengthen faith.
This world may tell us to look at what is going wrong in our lives, but we can respond by saying, “I have God and he is all that I need.” True freedom is knowing that our problems can never choke out our faith and that God works everything for good for those who love him.
So yes, wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. What has held you captive these days? Give that to the Lord and he will show you how to break free from it.