Our Daily Bread April 30
Free Indeed / By: Arthur Jackson If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.
Today's Scripture & Insight:
John 8:31–36 (NIV):
31 To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” 33 They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?” 34 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. 35 Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.
The film Amistad tells the story of West African slaves in 1839 taking over the boat that was transporting them and killing the captain and some of the crew. Eventually they were recaptured, imprisoned, and taken to trial. An unforgettable courtroom scene features Cinqué, leader of the slaves, passionately pleading for freedom. Three simple words—repeated with increasing force by a shackled man with broken English—eventually silenced the courtroom, “Give us free!” Justice was served and the men were freed.
Most people today aren’t in danger of being physically bound, yet true liberation from the spiritual bondage of sin remains elusive. The words of Jesus in John 8:36 offer sweet relief: “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” Jesus pointed to Himself as the source of true emancipation because He offers forgiveness to anyone who believes in Him. Though some in Christ’s audience claimed freedom (v. 33), their words, attitudes, and actions regarding Jesus betrayed their claim.
Jesus longs to hear those who would echo Cinqué’s plea and say, “Give me freedom!” With compassion He awaits the cries of those who are shackled by unbelief or fear or failure. Freedom is a matter of the heart. Such liberty is reserved for those who believe that Jesus is God’s Son who was sent into the world to break the power of sin’s hold on us through His death and resurrection.
Wonderful Grace of Jesus
Set My Spirit Free
Scripture to Respond:
Luke 4:18-19 (NIV)
18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Romans 8:1-2 (NIV)
1. Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you[a] free from the law of sin and death.
Are you enslaved by sin, longing for freedom? God’s Son Jesus Christ can release you for freedom as long as you are willing to believe in Him. He will set you free from the bondage of sin and death, and then you can be truly free. Are you willing?
Lord Jesus, help me to trust you fully. Set me free from the bondage of sin and obtain real freedom!
Wong Wai Tung (Chief executive officer of The Great Wall Education Foundation) & Sam Chow (Administrative officer of The Great Wall Education Foundation) Translated by Esther Leung