2 Corinthians 3:17 “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”
Don’t worry, I’m turning into super-grace where I am misinterpreting the scripture in Romans 5:20-6:4. I’m not saying ‘You’re free, do whatever you want! God will forgive you!’
Question: did Jesus create many instances for the Father’s grace to abound and for Jesus to receive forgiveness?
It’s a trick question, but just in case: NO Hebrews 4:14-16 says he is our High Priest who has been through everything we have been through, yet He did it without sin…so since we are encouraged by God to imitators of God, to follow Jesus who lived without sin…whyyyyy would you sin or think it is ok to sin simply because you receive forgiveness when you ask?
While yes it is true that we are free and that God will forgive us. BUT just because we know He will forgive us does NOT mean we should create more and more instances to experience His forgiveness. Rather He wants us to follow Him (Luke 9:23), to worship Him in Spirit and in truth (John 4:23), and to imitate Him (1 Thessalonians 2:14).
In order to imitate Him, we have Jesus to look at and follow.
Now that we have established what I am not talking about let us move forward to what I am talking about which is *drumroll* God’s freedom
When I was first introduced to the freedom all I wanted to shout was the Braveheart shout because I was excited about God’s revelation – for you readers, yes I did yell it in my class and hurt my voice 🙂
Freedom is currently defined as the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint. There are other definitions that ring with being free from slavery and from an oppressive government – which are both true in God. We are free from the slavery of sin (Romans 6:7, 6:18-22) and the government we are under is not oppressive is God’s (Isaiah 9:6-7)
But the freedom of God is one where we can speak/act/think as God wants us to without hindrance or restraint. (John 10:10) This applicable in both the church and outside. NOW this is not a license to start thumping the Bible on people’s heads or to go around “in the love of Christ” and tearing them up and down but rather this is more of a release from our boundaries of what is “acceptable” for us as a setting or atmosphere for worship.
I am not saying we should lower the standard of leadership qualities, where the line of sin is drawn, what is holy and permissible in the sight of God.
God’s freedom frees you from having to have certain circumstances or situations or the right ingredients to worship Him. Regardless of what is going on, God is still deserving of our worship.
We are free to worship Him – however you worship – in whatever situation we find ourselves in, without hindrance or restraint. That is what I mean by acceptable – well this wasn’t to my liking or I just don’t feel like it today. TOUGH! You do have the freedom to not worship, but more importantly you have the freedom to do so!
Most people are not going to worship or pray or do the Lord’s will when they don’t feel like it – that isn’t hard. It’s hard when nothing has gone right, nothing ‘good’ has happened, you don’t feel right in your spirit, etc. Basically pick an excuse and it will still be hard to worship because it is a war between flesh and the Spirit (Galatians 5:13-18).
In my time at college, I went to a friend’s church and it was not a tongue-speaking church. Well I ended up being seating next to her mother who felt very strongly against tongues and in the middle of worship, the Spirit was there and I began to extol the Lord in tongues. I wasn’t being disruptive or loud but she did not care for it. Well, the Word says that where the Spirit is that there is freedom or liberty and just because I was in an environment and next to someone who did not believe in it did not mean that I was to stop the Spirit.
I don’t encourage speaking in tongues to PURPOSEFULLY aggravate people (1 Corinthians 14:18-19; 39) – when this happened, I only realized she didn’t agree until after worship – and neither am I saying that just because you have experienced a freedom that someone else has not, you should shove that in peoples’ faces. (Matthew 17:27)