8. Spiritual Liberty! Psalm 31:8

Text:  “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He hath sent Me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn.” 
                                                                                                                 Isaiah 61:1-2.

Good morning, Divinely-liberated Christian!  When our Father in Heaven gave you and I Spiritual ’ears’ to hear and believe His Word; to receive His ’effectual call’ from God the Spirit - we were not only redeemed by the precious Blood of Christ our Saviour, but set at total liberty by His Holy Spirit.  Hallelujah!  We prisoners of selfish sin are forever FREE!  Glory to the Lamb Who is truly worthy!  Amen.

“And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”   (John 8:32)

“If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.”  (John 8:36)

But what does the possession of this ‘Spiritual liberty’ mean for you and for me?  Many today will try to teach us that we, being born again of the Spirit of God, can now live our lives liberated from all laws and restraints; in fact, as we personally desire to live!  What nonsense! 

We who, by Christ, are made fit for Heaven cannot live like Hell on earth!”

Verse 8.  “And hast not shut me up into the hand of the enemy.”  Our ‘enemies’ are primarily the world, the flesh and the Devil.  Being enslaved by either one of this triune of enemies, snares us in a prison-house of Spiritual incarceration; our souls are ‘shut up’ in sin, and therefore we are enslaved to carnality and shame.

Verse 8.  “Thou hast set my feet in a large room.  Blessed be God for liberty: civil liberty is valuable, religious liberty is precious, Spiritual liberty is priceless.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 150)

“Now the Lord is that Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.“        (2 Corinthians 3:17)

Dictionary Definition: Liberty - (noun) freedom from constraint, captivity, slavery or tyranny; freedom to do as one pleases; the unrestrained enjoyment of natural rights; power of free choice; privilege; permission; free range; leisure; disposal; the bounds within which certain privileges are enjoyed  (The Chambers Dictionary, page 927)

As regenerate Christians therefore, we have a true liberty in God the Spirit, or, in the Spirit of Jesus Christ.  This means that we are free to do, say, think, feel, practice all things which the Bible allows, according to our own personally enlightened and redeemed conscience.  As Christians we, at all times, seek to live our lives in a Christ like fashion - doing only the things that Christ Himself would have done and, in the Spirit of Christ Jesus.

This is why the nine-fold ‘fruits of the Spirit’ - love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance (or moderation) - are all character traits, actions, and expressions that fall inside the law of God.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22-23)

If we seek to live our daily lives inside God’s Spiritual law, then we are not ‘…shut up into the hand of the enemy…’ of licentiousness nor legalism!  We are truly FREE.  Hallelujah!

Dictionary Definitions: Licentious - (adjective) indulging in excessive freedom; given to the indulgence of the animal passions; dissolute.

Legalism - (noun) strict adherence to law; the doctrine that Salvation depends on strict adherence to the law, as distinguished from the doctrine of Salvation by grace (theology); the tendency to observe letter or form rather than spirit, or to regard things from the point of view of law.

The author learned this lesson the hard way - living a life of profligate sin; leading down, ever down, into darker and darker depths of depravity, until at 30 years of age, I found myself securely ‘shut up’ in ‘the hand of the enemy’, in a maximum security Prison serving two life sentences for terrorist murders!  My sins had ‘found me out.’

However, on August 12th, 1979, in cell 9 of H Block 6, Maze Prison, Northern Ireland, UK - the Lord Jesus Christ proclaimed liberty to me, sin’s captive, and set my soul and spirit Eternally free!  Hallelujah!  The Lord looseth the prisoners!  Glory to His Name!

After spending some 16 years in prison (1977-1993) - the just consequences of my own personal sin - the Lord saw fit to release me from the prison-house, and has, for the past twenty-three years ’…set my feet in a large room…’ indeed.  In Christ, I am truly FREE.  "If any man be in Christ...", he is Free!  Hallelujah!  Jesus sets us free!    (2 Corinthians 5:17)

Thought:   “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings… to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound…”  Hear with your hearts and believe.

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