The whole human race is on death row until we come to faith in Jesus and accept Him as our Lord and Savior. Without Jesus we would have no hope. Sin has a way of enslaving us, controlling us, dominating us and dictating our actions. Jesus can free us from this slavery that keeps us from becoming the person God created us to be. If sin is restraining, mastering, or enslaving you, Jesus can break its power over your life. He said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)
Jesus Himself is the truth that sets us free. He is the source of truth, the perfect standard of what is right. “To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, ‘If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.'” (John 8:31-32) He frees us from continued slavery to sin, from self-deception, and from deception by Satan. He shows us clearly the way to eternal life with the Lord.
Jesus does not give us freedom to do what we want, but the freedom to follow the Lord. Jesus said, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.” (John 8:34) As we seek to serve God, Jesus’s perfect truth frees us to be all that God meant us to be. “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” (John 8:36)
Thankfully, God has mercifully declared us not guilty and has offered us freedom from sin and the power to do His will. “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.” (Romans 8:1-2) As Christ followers, the Holy Spirit gives us the power we need to live the Christian life.
God’s grace does not cancel our duty to obey Him–it gives our obedience a new basis. “Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment.” (James 2:12-13) The law is no longer an external set of rules, but it is a “law that gives freedom”–one we joyfully and willingly carry out because we love God, and because we have the power of His Holy Spirit to carry it out. “But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.” (James 1:25)
Only God in His mercy can forgive our sins. We can’t earn forgiveness by forgiving others. But when we withhold forgiveness from others after having received it for ourselves, we show that we don’t understand or appreciate God’s mercy toward us, which makes us an unmerciful servant (Matthew 18:21-35). When we fall into Satan’s trap of an unforgiving spirit to others, he has managed to enslave us again. Do you want to be enslaved, or do you want to be free? “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” (John 8:34-36)