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Set Free – Live Free!

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. – Galatians 5:1

Two hundred thirty-four years ago, the Fathers of this country signed the Declaration of Independence from England. They determined to “live free or die.”

Nearly two millinea ago, Jesus said that if you will continue in His word, you will “know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32).

Political freedom is one thing; freedom in Jesus is something else, even though we sometimes get the two confused.

Jesus sets us free from the power, the penalty, and – to the extent we truly follow Him – even the practice of sin.

His life, death, and resurrection give the ultimate Truth. He Himself is the Truth that sets me free. Without Him, I would still be in slavery to my lusts and selfish desires. With Him, when I allow His Spirit to work in me.

He has set me free to be free. Therefore, Paul said, I should not allow myself to be yoked with slavery.

What can enslave me? It could be law, as in the context (see Galatians 4:21-31). It could be inner-heart passions. It could be traditions and opinions. It could be addictive substances or behavior. It, in short, could be anything that makes me committed to something other than Jesus. It can even disguise itself as true devotion to the Lord.

That is one reason I need to examine myself at this Table. I need to renew my pledge of loyalty to Jesus and to Jesus alone. I need to truly listen to His Word so I can walk in it – and be free.

SIMPLIFIED JOURNEY (21): Between the Testaments

The Bible world changed dramatically between the end of the Old Testament about 400 BC and the beginning of the New Testament.


Though the Jews returned to Jerusalem and their home country, beginning about 536 BC, they were just a tiny part of the Persian Empire at the end of the Old Testament. That continued until the Greeks and later the Romans over-ran Palestine.

Most Jews lived outside their homeland. Many chose not to leave Babylon, leaving a large group of Jews there. Under the Greeks and Romans, Jews found homes in other parts of those empires. Continue reading

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