16 Freedoms We Have in Christ

by Jul 4, 2016Assurance, Fear, Holidays

Today people throughout the United States celebrate the freedom we have as Americans. But, the concept of freedom didn’t originate with the founding of the United States. It’s found throughout the pages of the Bible, culminating with the person and work of Christ.

Jesus declared, “Therefore, if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed” (John 8:36).  

As believers, we enjoy numerous freedoms because of what Jesus has done for those who have placed their trust in Him alone.

Because of Jesus and His death and resurrection on our behalf, we have:

 

  1. Freedom from guilt. “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 8:1).

  2. Freedom from shame. “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame” (Rom. 10:11).

  3. Freedom from God’s wrath “For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thess. 5:9).

  4. Freedom from fear of death. “But has now been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel” (2 Tim. 1:10).

  5. Freedom from bondage to sin. “For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace” (Rom. 6:14).

  6. Freedom from the curse of the law. “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us” (Gal. 3:13).

  7. Freedom from legalism. “Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage” (Gal. 5:1).

  8. Freedom from Satan’s dominion. “He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love” (Col. 1:13).

  9. Freedom to approach God. “Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus” (Heb. 10:19).

  10.  Freedom to relate to God as His child and His heir. “Therefore, you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ” (Gal. 4:7).

  11.  Freedom to partake and enjoy every spiritual blessing. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ” (Eph. 1:3).

  12.  Freedom to bring our concerns and requests to God. “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God” (Phil. 4:6).

  13.  Freedom to walk with God throughout life. “For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: ’I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people’” (2 Cor. 6:15–17).

  14.  Freedom to authentically love others. “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God” (1 John 4:7).

  15.  Freedom to live out God’s purposes in your life. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them” (Eph. 2:10).

  16.  Freedom to enter the gates of heaven. “In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also” (John 14:2–3).

“What if I don’t know how to answer an objection about my faith in Jesus?”

This is a top fear people face when seeking to introduce a friend or loved one to Jesus. Sadly, it will stop many Christ followers in their tracks while sharing their faith this year. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

First, we should get one thing settled – if you are actively sharing your faith, you will be stumped by an objection about the Bible, Jesus, or Christian beliefs eventually. Unless, of course, you have an immediate answer to every potential question someone may ask about our infinite, all-knowing God. If that’s the case, I need to be reading your blog. However, if you’re more like the rest of us, the question really isn’t “what if I get stumped?”; instead, the question is “when I get stumped, how should I respond?”

Here are three things to do and one very important thing to remember when you run into an objection that shortens your breath, quickens your pulse, and makes you want to exit stage left.

Ask a clarifying question

Many Christians falsely believe that when an objection is raised, the clock starts ticking, and they have a very short window of time to answer the objection. If that’s how you feel, I want you to read this next sentence carefully. When someone makes an objection, you are not on the hook to answer it; they are on the hook to explain more. You can invite them to do so with a clarifying question like, “What do you mean by that?” I think an example will help.

Joanne: “Tina, I appreciate your beliefs, but I really don’t see any good reason to believe in God.”

Tina: “Thank you for being honest. However, may I ask what you mean when you say ‘God’?”

Joanne: “Well, I just don’t think there’s an old bearded guy up there watching our every move.”

Tina: “I see, and actually, I don’t believe in an old bearded guy either – can I share a little about who God is according to the Bible?”

Look back at what Tina did (politely). She asked a what do you mean question that invited Joanne to explain more. That did two very important things: It kept the conversation moving toward the gospel, and it took all the pressure off Tina to cobble together a defense of God’s existence on the spot.

Acknowledge the objection and advance the conversation

Consider this brief exchange:

Jonathan: “I just don’t think there is any evidence that Christianity is true.”

Craig: “I definitely want to hear your thoughts about that, but can I briefly share what I believe about Jesus?”

In this short conversation, Craig isn’t interested in proving Jonathan wrong, and he isn’t avoiding the objection. In fact, he makes it clear that he wants to hear Jonathan’s thoughts. All he’s seeing permission to push the objection to the end so he can share about his faith in Christ. This can be very effective, because in some cases, someone like Jonathan has been bringing up this objection for years and has heard 1,000 reasons why Christianity makes sense (and continues to ignore them), but what he’s never heard is the gospel of Jesus Christ.

“But,” you may be thinking, “what happens when they bring up the objection again and I don’t know how to respond?” Well, that leads us right into the next suggestion.

Use Your 5-word Ace Card: “Let me think about that”

If you ever feel pinned down by an objection, these five words will get you off the hook 100% of the time: “let me think about that.” Here are four reasons this phrase is so powerful: 

  1. It lets the other person know you appreciate their objection and want the time it deserves to think about it
  2. It removes all pressure to provide an immediate answer
  3. It allows you the opportunity to set up a future time to talk
  4. It gives you the chance to meet with a pastor, mentor, etc. about the topic at hand so you can come prepared to the future discussion

As you can see, this simple phrase does a lot of work for you. It is quite literally your ace card in any conversation that goes sideways.

One critical thing to remember

Now that you know some helpful tactics to address objections while sharing your faith, there is one last thing to remember – and it’s vitally important.

Your job is to glorify God, not win arguments.

Too often people come to blogs like this with the goal to “not look foolish” or “to get the best of someone.” If your honest intention is to win arguments instead of souls, then your intention has more to do with glorifying your intellect than glorifying God. Sit with that for a moment before you depart to put these tactics into action. Ask God to make these a part of your efforts to glorify Him as He opens opportunities for you to share the wondrous message of the cross.