- July 9, 2017
- Christian Living
As we finish off the leftovers of our 4th of July barbecues and put away the star-spangled decorations that infuse us with patriotic feelings, we should reflect on what freedom really means. We can certainly feel grateful for the rights that we have today and the ability to do many of the things we would like to do. Freedom, however, goes beyond what is listed in historical documents like the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. Our rights have been given to us by a wonderful Creator. The Bible has more than a few things to say about the nature of freedom and what it means to truly enjoy it. Here are a few Bible verses about freedom that teach us what it has to do with our Christian faith.
“It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.”
The writings of the Apostle Paul have much to say about freedom and Galatians 5 is as good a place as any to dive into what all that entails. Freedom is one of the greatest things in all of the world. When we encounter Christ, the heavy burden of sin is removed from our shoulders and we experience the abundant life that Jesus spoke about during His ministry. The trouble is that we don’t always choose freedom. Even after we have placed our faith in Christ, we are imperfect people.
Here Paul is telling believers to choose the gospel of Christ over everything else. Our sinful past is not option as we already know that it leads to death. We must also not be swayed by so-called religious thinkers who preach a flawed gospel. Staying on the narrow path of truth is what will lead to ultimate freedom.
1 Corinthians 10:23-24,31-33 - Bible Verses About Freedom
“All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful but not all things edify. Let no one seek his own good, but that of his neighbor….Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. Give no offense either to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God; just as I also please all men in all things, not seeking my own profit but the profit of the many, so that they may be saved.”
Imagine living in the early days of Christianity without phones, the Internet, or a half-dozen Bibles sitting around the house. When we also throw in the fact that you have several cultures clashing together, it’s easy to see how things might be a bit confusing. Freedom is rarely as simple as it sounds. The church in Corinth found this out when Paul wrote to them on several occasions to clear up some of their misguided notions.
By dying on the cross, Christ atoned for all of mankind’s sins. This cures our terminal condition and completely pays our debts. We are now clean in the eyes of God. Paul is quick to point out that we should not treat this as a free pass when it comes to future sins, though. Multiple times in 1 Corinthians he says, “All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable.” Even when walking in freedom, we have a duty to build others up, obey God, and act selflessly.
Exodus and the Slavery of God’s People
From the most basic understanding of the word, Exodus provides us with so many bible verses about freedom. As the Israelites are subjugated to slave labor over a period of many years, they desire freedom above all else. They weren’t just working long hours for no pay. At one point Pharaoh was happy to order the murder of all male babies. If ever there was a group of people in need of deliverance, it was here. God was never far from His people, though. He always works in His own timing and through His own means. God speaks to Moses in Exodus 6 and tells him that He has heard the groaning of His people and the time has come to deliver them. While most of the bible verses about freedom seen here will be talking in a more spiritual sense, the way in which God came to the aid of His people in Egypt is a very practical example of freedom in the Bible.
1 Peter 2:16
“Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God.”
This verse seems to be a little contradictory in its commands. On the one hand, we are told to live freely. The verse ends by saying that we should be slaves to God. How can we be both free and in slavery. As is stated in other parts of the Bible, mankind is always serving something. Sometimes it is greed concerning money, other times it is lust of the flesh, but we are always allowing something to have mastery over us.
When we allow God to be our master, we can experience the ultimate freedom. He is the only One capable of being a holy and true master. In the context of this verse, submitting before God also means that we must obey the laws of man so long as they do not go against God. We have authority that has been placed over us by the kingdoms of this world and we must respect that God has put those there. On top of this, we need to respect all whom we come in contact with and proudly exemplify the characteristics of Christ.
Genesis 2 - Bible Verses About Freedom
The main Bible verses about freedom in this passage are found in verses 15-17. God tells Adam that he can eat from any tree in the garden except for one. He even says that the reason why Adam can’t eat from this tree is that it would lead to certain death. Of course we know that God’s warning is eventually ignored only to lead to the Fall.
No matter where we go in life, there will always be rules. Every country, city, and state has their own list of wrongdoings. Between the laws of man and the laws of God, there are parameters that we must live our lives within. This does not mean that we cannot experience freedom. In fact, freedom is best enjoyed when it takes place in a society that respects laws and the other members of the community. If there were no laws to stop someone from robbing or murdering you each time you stepped out of the house, life would be like a post-apocalyptic film. Instead, we can enjoy a reasonable amount of safety due to the laws that God and man have set before us.
“Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give.”
Here we are reminded that the grace of God has been given to us freely. The 12 disciples were not chosen on the criteria of personal achievements, academics, or from what family they came. God chose them because they were ready and willing and He knew that He could use them. When we go into the service of Christ, we should remember that He is the one who is in control. You are not doing God a big favor by evangelizing or working in the children’s ministry. You have been invited to take part in the powerful work that He is orchestrating across the globe.
What a wonderful thing to be able to partner with the God of the universe to bring about real change! Christ is essentially reminding His followers that they should not be like the Pharisees who raise their noses to the common folk and are always eager to show off just how much religious doctrine they know. The ultimate freedom that we encounter through Christ is not something that is due us, but rather the greatest gift of all.
Mark 5:25-34 - Bible Verses About Freedom
“A woman who had had a hemorrhage for twelve years, and had endured much at the hands of many physicians, and had spent all that she had and was not helped at all, but rather had grown worse- after hearing about Jesus, she came up in the crowd behind Him and touched His cloak. For she thought, ‘If I just touch His garments, I will get well.’ Immediately the flow of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her affliction. Immediately Jesus, perceiving in Himself that the power proceeding from Him had gone forth, turned around in the crowd and said, ‘Who touched My garments?’ And His disciples said to Him, ‘You see the crowd pressing in on You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’’ And He looked around to see the woman who had done this. But the woman fearing and trembling, aware of what had happened to her, came and fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth. And He said to her, ‘Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace and be healed of your affliction.’”
One of the most popular stories of Christ’s healing is also one of the many Bible verses about freedom. Although we still have medical situations in our lives today that can eat away at us for years, we can only imagine how much worse it would be in Biblical times. For years, this woman went to many doctors who were unable to treat her ailment. She spent all of her money hoping to find a cure, but she only got worse. Then she hears about Jesus and the healing work that He is doing. She thinks, “If I just touch his garments, I will get well.” When she finds her moment, she does just that and she is instantly healed. Can you imagine what it would be like, after suffering for 12 years, to miraculously go from sick to healthy in a second? We see that the woman didn’t fully understand the situation because later she is scared to come before Jesus, but she knew that He had the power to help her.
When Christ speaks to the woman, He tells her that she is free from her suffering and that she should go and live likewise. Freedom in Christ can come in an instant, but the effects are lasting.
“So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, ‘If you continue in My word then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.’ They answered Him, ‘We are Abraham’s descendants and have never yet been enslaved to anyone; how is it that You say, ‘You will become free’?’ Jesus answered them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son does remain forever. So, if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.’”
Can you imagine living in slavery and not knowing it? As we see in these Bible verses about freedom, it is very possible to live in slavery to our sins and be completely unaware. When our lives are consumed by sinful habits, we are not walking in freedom. The only way to experience true freedom is to trust in Christ.
The Jews whom Jesus is speaking with here believe that they are righteous because they are descendants of Abraham. As we’ve discussed earlier, Christ does not care who your family is or how religious you claim to be. If you aren’t putting your faith in Him, it’s all for nothing. As Jesus states here, “a slave does not remain in the house forever, but a son belongs to it forever.” The only one who can save us from our sins is Christ.
Romans 6 - Bible Verses About Freedom
Another great place to go for Bible verses about freedom is Romans 6. What the chapter boils down to is that we have traded our slavery in sin for a slavery to God. Instead of being on a path to death and suffering, we are now on the path of life and righteousness. Even though the debt for our sins has been paid for, we should still be committed to acts and habits that are pleasing to God. He didn’t die for us to simply go on sinning without repercussion, but for us to have a chance at the most abundant life possible. Why should we trade a fulfilling life in Christ for worldly one that ultimately will not satisfy?
These are just a few examples of the many Bible verses about freedom that you can check out for yourself. We can never overstate the importance of studying God’s word in order to more fully understand Him and the world we live in. There’s so much to learn and to motivate you as you go through life. At the K-LOVE Fan Awards, we like to focus on the Christian entertainment that is making an impact on your life each and every day. By celebrating these artists and giving the fans a voice, we are able to create the ultimate fan experience. Find out how you can get in on the action by clicking below.