|He Came to Set the Captives Free – And That Freedom Includes YOU Too!!
“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.” (Luke 4:18)
There He is, Jesus – with the key to your jail cell. I have a vivid imagination, as I read that scripture, I picture one of those large old fashioned skeleton keys – you know the kind, you see them in every old cowboy sitcom or movie. There Jesus is standing there, outside your cell, unlocking the door with a key only He has. The door creaks as it opens wide, Jesus is telling you to come forth! That you are free! What is your reaction?
You have been in the dark for so long – You think you are having a mirage. There stands a man, in blinding white light outside your cell. You can hardly look upon Him for the light surrounding Him is blinding. You say to yourself: “This is not real, there is not a man dressed in white with a beard and a key outside of my cell. I’m having an illusion.” You blink your eyes from the brightness and turn your head to face the wall which you have faced for many a season…
You run out that door as quickly as your legs will carry you, stopping only at the opening to throw your arms around the man who has rescued you, throwing your arms around Him and say, “Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!!!!” Tears of joy and relief and thankfulness streaming down your face…
You look at the man releasing you with a look of distrust wondering what is in it for Him. What will this cost you? Thinking that this is another trick. “No thank you, the devil that you know is better than the one you do not…”
Jesus came to set the CAPTIVES free! He can set us free, but He cannot MAKE us accept that freedom! The cost was His life for YOURS. He gave it willingly, obediently and with more love than we will not fully understand until we truly stand before Him. What are you going to do??
I understand all of the above reactions – because I have felt them. Have you? I say that humbly and with shame. Often times when we don’t walk out of our situation thankful for Jesus having made the ability for us to do so, is because we lack enough faith… (Ouch…) Faith to believe that God is BIGGER than any situation or problem… Or that He even cares enough about us to do anything about it. If we don’t become discouraged or depressed we become mad at God because we think He doesn’t “love us enough” to help us get through whatever situation we are in. Even if it is a situation that is of our own doing… And yet that is another reaction we have.
“Lord, this is my mess… I made it. It is my fault – Mine! Mine! Mine! I deserve whatever hell I have allowed myself to be in…”
That is an absolute LIE from the pit of HELL. There is not ONE of us worthy! Or Righteous! NOT one!!! The Bible tells us:
“As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one.” (Romans 3:10)
“All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away.” (Isaiah 64:6)
There is no degree of sin. And all of us sin! (Oh yes…) But the good news is that Jesus took those sins upon the cross with Him! He died for forgiveness of our sins!! The problem that we have is that we dishonor Him by believing that that is not ENOUGH to get rid of them! We believe we deserve to be miserable or to stay in the cesspool we have probably created ourselves. And that is simply not true…
If you were in the ocean drowning, and you were to be rescued – say they threw out a floaty to you. Would you reach out and take it? Or would you continue to drown, thrashing your arms and yelling, “Help! Help!”
Your help is right before you! Take the hand of Jesus and allow Him to pull you out of whatever mire you are in. It doesn’t MATTER the reason. The Bible tells us:
“You have searched me and known me.You know when I sit down and when I rise up; You understand my thought from afar. You scrutinize my path and my lying down, And are intimately acquainted with all my ways.…” (Psalms 139:2-3)
Nothing comes as a surprise to Him. He knows you intimately. Let Him love you, let Him heal you, let Him deliver you. He is there at this very moment that you are reading this. You may not be able to see Him physically with your eyes. But if you soften your heart, and just quiet your thoughts – you will by the Holy Spirit feel Him. TRY IT. Don’t just take my word for it – experience it for yourself, what do you have to lose? Listen…
“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.” (Revelations 3:20)
Do not allow your own captivity to keep you from experiencing the freedom that Jesus bought with His own blood… Do not allow doubt, or sorrow, or depression or self-hate to get in the way of allowing Him to free you. He is BIGGER than your situation. He loves you. Truly loves You. Don’t hold yourself back. Walk through those cell doors that Jesus has opened – rejoicing. Thankful. it is WHY He gave His life. He gave it for YOU to walk freely away.
The price is to turn away from whatever it is that held you captive previously. Believe that God has better in store for you…. It is true you know. He wants you to walk through those gates or doors that have held you captive so that you can live the life that He has created you for! You have a purpose! You have a reason for being! Isn’t it time that you found out what that was? There is nothing more satisfying than walking in the purpose that God has for your life! Take time to discover what it is, if you don’t know already!
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, And before you were born I consecrated you.” (Jeremiah 1:5).
Now that is a loving Father, don’t you think? You are consecrated!!!
“Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the LORD. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.” (Isaiah 1:18)
Take His hand. Talk to Him. You don’t need fancy words – just talk to Him. Share yourself with Him, it is not as though He doesn’t know you already, He does… But He likes to hear you share your mind with Him. It’s called “having a personal relationship.” And that is what He desires. The Bible says:
“Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.” (Psalms 34:8)
It is the only way that you can discover it and enter into a relationship with Him. Just like that floaty, you have to reach out and grab it. It is there – just receive it! Accept it! And when you do – cling to Him. He is your forever eternal life line. Once you have tasted and seen that the LORD is good – you won’t ever want to let go! And guess what? If you find yourself walking back into that “cell” – you’ll stop and turn around and say, “No! I have been there and done that! No! Once those God has freed are free indeed!!!”
“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” (John 8:36)
You will reach a point where you know – whatever place you are at in your life that what God has for you is so much better than what you had for yourself! And no matter how many times you turn around – God will be there directing you, strengthening you, encouraging you, loving you, believing in you…
Go! Be Free! Walk out of that cell that has held your mind captive! And believe in your freedom that He has bought with His own precious, precious blood.
“God paid a high price for you, so don’t be enslaved by the world.” (1 Corinthians 7:23)
Look! The door is open! Fly high! Glide! Soar! Walk in that freedom and don’t look back! The best is YET to come!