For the Sake of Freedom
July is the month that we celebrate our freedom here in the United States. From the beginning of this great country to today, brave men and women have fought and died to keep us free. America is like no other nation when it comes to freedom. We are blessed to be citizens of a free country, though the Bible tells us that we are to be citizens not of an earthly country, but a heavenly one: "For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Yeshua the Messiah" (Philippians 3:20-21). Over the years, great kingdoms have come, and great kingdoms have gone. There has been the rise and fall of empires over history, but there is one kingdom that will never end, and that kingdom is the kingdom of God the Almighty, the Creator of heaven and earth, all that is seen and unseen, known and unknown. Great is His kingdom! Today we want to look at this great kingdom and the one who died for us to set us free.
In the Beginning, There Was Two
There are two kingdoms: the kingdom of darkness and the kingdom of light. These kingdoms were established at the time of creation when God separated the light from the darkness in Genesis 1:2-5: "And the earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. Then God said, ‘Let there be light;' and there was light. And God saw that the light was good, and God separated the light from the darkness. And God called the light day and the darkness He called night, and there was evening and there was morning, one day." This was before God created the sun, moon, and stars in verses 14-19 on the fourth day of creation. So we see this first separation of light and darkness goes beyond the light and darkness that we understand. John tells us that "God is all light, and there is no darkness in Him," (1 John 1:5). Yeshua (Jesus) tells us that He is the Light of the world: "He who follows Me shall not walk in the darkness, but shall have the light of day" (John 8:12). What does He mean by "day?" 1 Thessalonians 5:5 tells us, "For you are all sons of light and sons of day. We are not of night nor darkness." Paul tells us in Galatians 5:1, "It was for freedom that Messiah set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery."
Yeshua, our mighty warrior, came to give us freedom. He won the battle on the Cross of Calvary. He bought us our freedom. He redeemed us and set us free. Paul tells the Colossians in chapter 1:13-14, "For He (Yeshua) delivered us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins."
You see, our sins made us slaves to a hard taskmaster in the kingdom of darkness, and we had no way of freeing ourselves from this bondage which had control over us. "Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of death?" (Romans 7:24). But Yeshua our Messiah came and set us free. He delivered us just like He (God) delivered the people in the time of the Exodus from Egypt; but this time, Yeshua was the Passover lamb that laid down His life, and His blood covers us from the death angel. The writer to the Hebrews tells us in chapter 2:14-15, "Since the children (that's us) are of flesh and blood, He too shared in their humanity so that by His death He might destroy him who holds the power of death, that is, the devil, and free those who through fear of death (for the wages of sin is death) were subject to slavery."
Romans 8:1-2 tells us, "For there is now no condemnation for those who are in the Messiah Yeshua. For the law of the Spirit of life in Messiah Yeshua has set you free from the law of sin and of death."
"But now having been freed from sin and now free to serve God, you derive your benefit, resulting in sanctification, and the outcome eternal life," (Romans 6:22). So we see that because of our sin we became slaves in the kingdom of darkness, and death was our final outcome. We needed a savior who would save us and redeem us and deliver us out of bondage and take us out of the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of light. That savior was and is Yeshua, who for the sake of freedom came and delivered us out of bondage. He laid down His life. He fought the spiritual battle to give us the victory, to give us our freedom.
But we are not to use our freedom to continue in sin (Romans 6:14-15). In fact, just the opposite—we are to crucify our flesh and the desires that lead us in sin. Galatians 5:24 tells us, "Now those who belong to Messiah Yeshua have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires."
At the End There Is One
We see that our Savior not only delivered us from sin and death, but that He will totally destroy the kingdom of darkness so that light will prevail for all eternity. Revelation 17:14 tells us, "These will wage war against the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, because He is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those who are with Him are the called and chosen and faithful." Isaiah 42:13 also says, "The Lord will go forth like a warrior, He will arouse the zeal like a man of war, He will utter a shout, yes, He will raise a battle cry. He will prevail against His enemies." Yes, Messiah is a mighty warrior, and He fights for us every day to give us the victory in our lives. Romans 8:28 says, "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose."
At this time that we celebrate our freedom in this country, let us also remember our mighty warrior Yeshua who came also for the sake of freedom.