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Sunday LeftoversSin is not liberating.

People will say it is liberating.  Advertisers will attempt to convince you it is liberating.  Those who engage in habitual sin will assert that Christians who follow the way of Christ are in bondage and enslavement.  Sinners will smile, laugh, and appear joyful when engaging in sinful behavior, asserting that they are free!  But they are not free.

Sin is bondage.

Our temptation and inclination is to think that there is no freedom when we obey God’s Word; God says there is no freedom without obedience, because if we do not obey, it is a demonstration that we are still ensnared by and in bondage to sin.  This is what Jesus said about sin:

“If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.…Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son does remain forever. So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.” (John 8:31–36)

And read Romans 6:14-20ff and you will find the same truth.  Sin is bondage; and obedience is liberating.

That’s why the Psalmist said, “And I will walk at liberty, For I seek Your precepts” (Ps. 119:45).  Liberty is only known when we are obedient to God’s principles for living.  So reading God’s Word reveals real liberty and freedom to us — the liberty of enslavement to God.

One writer says it this way:

“Let but our eyes be opened, our judgments clearly exercised, our consciences suffered to speak; and this point is clear — Sin is slavery (John, viii. 34)— Holiness is liberty. The sinner may live in bonds with as much delight as if he was in his element. He may seem even to himself to be at large, while in fact be is ‘shut up, and cannot come forth.’ For such is the tyranny under which he is bound, that he cannot help himself; and (to use the confession of a heathen) while ‘he sees and approves better things, he follows the worse.’ Every sin is a fresh chain of bondage (Tit. iii. 3), under the check of a cruel master. On the other hand—the Lord’s commands—as he himself declares, and all his servants testify—are ‘for our good alway.’ (Deut. vi. 24. Matt. xi. 29, 30. Comp. 1 John, v. 3.) His ‘service is perfect freedom.’ (Liturgy.) The life of liberty is to be under the bonds of holy love and duty. (Luke, i. 74, 75. Comp. Ps. cxvi. 16.) Let the trial be made of two Masters; conviction must follow.

“True it is, that the corrupt and rebellious inclinations will ‘lust’ (Gal. v. 17) to the end. But as long as indulgence is denied, conflict excited, and the constant endeavour maintained to “bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (2 Cor. x. 5), our liberty is established, even where it is not always enjoyed. Every fresh chain, by which we bind ourselves to the Lord, makes us more free.” [Charles Bridges, Psalm 119, 112-13.]