Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Truth or Dare (08/28/08)
- TITLE: Daring to Be Made Free
By Randy Foncree
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You shall know the truth, and the truth shall MAKE you free…
Many times since I’d become a Christian, I’d read it from the Bible, and heard others teach and preach about how the truth makes us free. I’d found it a hard concept to grasp at times, because the world, and even some Christians say that it’s impossible to experience true deliverance and freedom in Christ. I’m a living testimony that that is just not the case.
On the other hand, I’ve heard some teachers and preachers misquote this passage of scripture that was uttered from the mouth of Jesus during His earthly ministry. Their take on it is, “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall SET you free.” Some might put being set free and made free in the same category, but it’s not. The difference is one implies a one time act; the other implies a continuous, ongoing work in the life of a believer.
If an animal is caught in a trap, and someone sets the animal free, that doesn’t mean the animal is permanently set free. The animal could easily be ensnared again. If someone MAKES the animal free from the trap means that they take measures to be sure the animal is never caught in a trap again. A child might free the animal, take it home, and attempt to make it a pet, thus it comes under the child’s continual protection. That is what Jesus is saying He does in the life of a believer. He makes us free. When someone becomes born again, God goes to work on his or her life, and gives that person what he or she needs to walk in continuous, ongoing freedom. The bondage comes when a believer disobeys what God tells them in His Word, or they have un-dealt with issues that causes them to turn away from God’s provision and protection when they experience problems related to the issues in their life.
I spent years in bondage to mental and emotional problems. After I became born again, it didn’t totally disappear. But God started to work on those areas of my life that caused me pain and distress. The mental problems I had were directly linked to my childhood. I suffered abuse at home and school. I had a father whom I could never please. The only affection I received from my parents was at the end of a leather strap. My father left this earth not speaking to me, but I never stopped loving him regardless. It left me horribly insecure and suffering from mental problems that would take years to overcome. Much of my freedom came when I chose to forgive those who hurt and abused me.
The Lord began to make me free when He took me up and became a Father I never had. He began to nurture me back to mental and emotional health, much like someone does a baby bear after losing its mother. God used very special people to speak words into my life that I rarely heard growing up. Words like, “God says He loves you”, and “God said He’d never forsake you.” At those times I would feel the tangible presence of God and begin to weep before Him. Those were healing tears of love and acceptance. The words from the Bible began to become real in my life. It was as if God took His big loving arms and wrapped them around me tight and said, “It’s ok! I’m here now!” It was at that point I dared to be set free, and God’s promise of lasting deliverance became a reality in my life. Not by my own feeble effort, but a God who loved me more that I ever could have thought possible.
As God moves us from glory to glory and faith-to-faith, He makes a way for us to experience lasting freedom from the pain of our heartaches and distresses. It doesn’t mean He’ll remove all the circumstances that causes us pain, But as we learn to rest in the shelter of God’s loving arms, we’ll find that he does truly desire to MAKE us free.
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