Let freedom ring! What a beautiful thought; a joyous sound of no longer being enslaved, indebted, controlled and in captivity. But it’s much more than the history of a country, it’s the history of humanity. The bible speaks very clearly about our freedom.
John 8:32 “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
John 8:36 “So if the son sets you free, you really will be free.”
We are no longer a slave to sin. We’ve been given a new name. Yes, good things. But freedom comes with cost. Being “bought out of slavery” doesn’t come cheap. Our freedom that we have been given – well, it was undeserved. We have been redeemed, but not for our own sake.
When is the last time you purchased something costly? Was it a vacation – maybe Disney World, or a cruise to the Bahamas? Not me… no rollercoasters or boats, thank you. (In fact, they both give me the same queasy feeling.) Perhaps it was a new tech device. Giant TV? Anyway, it could be as simple as a gumball purchased from a candy machine. (Yup, they still have those… but I seem to recall a different price point, holla penny candy!) Whatever the purchase was, there were expectations on the buyer’s end. Vacation = good times and memories. Tech device = functionality. TV = Awesome movie/ sports experience. Gumball = duh. And as the buyer of whatever it was, why wouldn’t you have expectations? You paid the price, you put in the purchasing effort. You made the commitment. As did our God.
So why do we seem to think that the freedom, the actual transaction of our salvation, was the destination? God didn’t bring the Israelites out of slavery and say “well, off you go, you’re free”. No, he tookthem somewhere. He had a destination in mind – the promise land.
In Isaiah 61, the same passage that Jesus reads in the temple and says that it is fulfilled by him (Luke 14:17-21), it lays out the purchase arrangement. Verse 10 gives an interesting picture:
“I greatly rejoice in the Lord, I exult in my God; for He has clothed me with the garments of salvation and wrapped me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom wears a turban and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.”
Think of it this way: you get all decked out for the marital transaction. But the point isn’t the ceremony, it’s the commitment and the lives to be fully lived out together. The belonging to one another. When Adam and Eve sinned in the garden, the devil wanted them to stay where they were. Naked, ashamed. But God clothed them and continued to bring them out to a new place. Yes, it was a place of consequence, but he didn’t smite them. He didn’t throw up his hands and say, “You ruined everything!”, no. He tookthem somewhere. The same God who gave us free choice never intended us to sit down in the emptiness of that freedom. The Israelites received their freedom and God had a kingdom in mind. The wilderness was part of the transaction, the freedom that they journeyed through in order to get to their destination. The kingdom they were heading to was one of belonging. True fulfillment of being purchased by the Lord and changing their identity. He said, “You will be my people, and I will be your God” (Ex. 6:7). So that ringing that you hear? It is the bell of freedom, reminding us to usher in the Kingdom – the true destination of our redemption.
what is "spark"?
Its a small thing - like the flash on a spark plug that hopefully ignites something bigger to propel you forward.