God alone made it possible for you to be in Christ Jesus. For our benefit God made Christ to be wisdom itself. He is the one who made us acceptable to God. He made us pure and holy, and he gave himself to purchase our freedom. –1 Corinthians 1:30
The Declaration of Independence pronounced the colonies free from British rule on July 4, 1776. Freedom does not come without a price. Through the Revolutionary War, our nation’s freedom was paid for by the blood and sacrifice of the men and women who fought for their dream of what would become the United States. The battles were not easy, and the years took their toll on our young nation. In the end, the price was paid and freedom achieved. By 1781, the Fourth of July was named a national holiday, and today, fireworks, parades, and picnics still mark this celebration.
The gospel message preaches a similar tune. We have been given freedom in Christ. We have freedom from death caused by sin. Here again, our freedom was secured at a great cost. God sent His only Son to die and shed His blood for us. The ultimate price of freedom was paid through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross. Although the cost was high, Jesus’ death and resurrection purchased the freedom of anyone who trusts in Him. By faith, we become children of God and co-heirs with Christ. Through Him, we are made pure, holy, and blameless; all gifts God gives to us freely.
Still, with this freedom comes tremendous responsibility. The gift of freedom is not a license to do as you please. Rather, it is a calling to live unselfishly and righteously. Freedom rings when you chose not to indulge all your desires, but chose to live a life honoring the Lord.
As you enjoy Fourth of July festivities and celebrate the freedom of our nation, say a prayer of thanks to God for the freedom from sin He has given you, and for the life He has given you to live now and throughout all eternity with Him.
1. Why is it hard to separate good works from a saving relationship with Jesus? Why does doing good works often make more sense than having faith?
2. Romans 6:16 tells us that we are either slaves to sin or to righteous living. What does this mean to you?