“If the Son sets you free, you are free indeed.” John 8:36
When Jesus began His public ministry He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day and stood up to read.One of the things He read from Isaiah 61:1-2 was, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me because He has anointed Me to...proclaim liberty to the captives.”Jesus came and died on the cross for our sin to set us free.Yet many believers continue to live in the devil’s prison.Christ has opened the door to freedom but we choose to stay inside the cold damp cell.What would possess us to live this way?
The 1994 movie The Shawshank Redemption plays on cable TV quite often.It is a very intriguing story of a falsely accused man named Andy breaking out of Shawshank State Prison.In the movie Morgan Freeman plays the part of a man serving a life sentence at Shawshank who becomes a close friend of Andy’s.Following Andy’s escape he is suddenly and unexpectedly paroled after 40 years in the prison.As he walks into freedom he realizes that he’s not ready to live on the outside.In a nearby cheap hotel room he finds the scribbled message of another friend who had been released only to take his own life because he couldn’t adjust to freedom.Freeman himself struggles greatly with the same thoughts.He is able to survive and is finally reunited with Andy on a secluded beach in Mexico.
What was the problem with Freeman?Why was freedom so hard for him?Freedom was hard because his mind had been trained for years to think like a prisoner.This mindset was so powerful that even when he walked out into the sunlight of freedom he continued to think like a prisoner.
This is what many believers do.We have been set free by Jesus Christ but in our minds we still think like prisoners.Our past tells us we are prisoners.Jesus tells us we are free.Who are we going to believe?
Bill and Gloria Gaither wrote a great song entitled, It Is Finished.The song talks about the words uttered by Jesus from the cross moments before He bowed His head to die.In His death our freedom was accomplished.The lyrics in verse two depict the struggle in our minds when we don’t know and believe in the freeing power of the cross and how that struggle is taken away when we hear and believe the good news of Christ’s liberating power.
Yet in my heart, the battle was still raging Not all prisoners of war had come home These were battlefields of my own making I didn't know that the war had been won Oh, but then I heard the king of the ages Had fought all the battles for me And that victory was mine for the claiming And now praise his name, I am free.
There are many voices out there and many voices that may be reverberating in our minds but only one voice is the Voice of truth.Hear His voice and you will be able to say, “I am a prisoner no more.”