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Sermons

Sun, Feb 04, 2018

Remaining Free in Christ

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Scripture clearly teaches that he who the Son has set free is free indeed (John 8:36). However, Scripture also teaches that it is entirely possible for a Christian to again come under a yoke of slavery (Romans 6:16).
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Scripture clearly teaches that he who the Son has set free is free indeed (John 8:36). However, Scripture also teaches that it is entirely possible for a Christian to again come under a yoke of slavery (Romans 6:16). So, how can we be protected from the spiritual slavery that many Christians commonly fall into? First, the Church can remain free by understanding the characteristics of secular wisdom (Col. 2:8). Paul warns the Colossians not to be taken captive by the false teaching that was attacking this church. Part of the Greek philosophy that was affecting the Colossians was the belief that the body was evil and the spirit was good. This led to gross extremes in their religion.

 

Some became ascetics; they would starve themselves, beat up their flesh, and allow themselves no pleasures, while others would say it does not matter what you do with the body because the spirit is all that matters. This led to antinomianism—living with no law. Second, the Church can remains free by understanding Christ’s deity. Paul makes the argument that Christ is enough and we do not need any extra revelation (Col. 2:9–10). The Gnostics claimed that Christ was not fully God but simply an emanation from him—a part of God’s fullness. Paul corrected this view by teaching that Christ is not a lesser God or an emanation from Him. He is fully God because the “fullness of God” dwelled in Him (John 1:1; Heb. 1:3), unlike what the Gnostics were teaching, and also unlike what many cults teach today. Third, the Church can remain free by understanding her sufficiency in Christ (Col. 2:10).

 

When we became born again, we received everything we needed for salvation. There are no new experiences we need to be seeking, no new knowledge to find in order to be saved as the Gnostics taught (2 Peter 1:3). We are sufficient in Christ. God, in his divine power, has given us everything we need for life and godliness through the knowledge of him. Fourth, the Church can remain free by understanding her deliverance from Sin in Christ (Col. 2:11). Paul declared that Christians are the true circumcision (cf. Phil. 3:3). When we were saved by God, Christ circumcised our heart.

 

He cut away the sin nature and delivered us from the power of the sin. We are no longer slaves of sin. We do not need legalistic laws or spiritualism to conquer sin because Christ is sufficient. Our old man died with him, and therefore we can start to walk in that freedom. Fifth, the Church can remain free by understanding her forgiveness in Christ. The Christian must understand the forgiveness that God has given us in Christ. People who are drawn into cults or other false teachings are often people who are bound to sin and guilt and don’t truly know their forgiveness in Christ.

 

Scripture declares that false teachers feast on people loaded down with sin and guilt, and they use that guilt to bring them under further bondage (2 Timothy 3:6; 2 Peter 2:18–19). These teachers promise freedom when they themselves are actually slaves of sin. If we are going to be protected from cults and secular wisdom that promise freedom, then we must know Christ is sufficient. He is enough to deliver us from sin and also give us complete forgiveness. Sixthly, the Church can remain free by understanding her victory over Satan in Christ (Col. 2:15).

 

These believers were being tempted to submit to elementary spirits and the worship of angels. This was very common in paganism. Pagans lived in fear of demonic spirits and would offer sacrifices and perform religious acts to pacify them. Paul says all these spirits have been disarmed and triumphed over in Christ. All these powers are in submission to Christ, and therefore we should not be enslaved to them.

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