Romans 8:1-2 "Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death."
Sin at its very core attempts to envision life independent from God. Whenever a Christian tries to live apart from submission to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, the Christian life becomes locked down. Today's post is about explaining Romans 8:1-11 in what we could call: "the declaration of dependence". We will propose that true spiritual freedom is dependence by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Charles Carroll, one of the signers of the "Declaration of Independence", notes: "Without morals a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they therefore who are decrying the Christian religion, whose morality is so sublime and pure...are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments." Carroll's statement shows that with respect to God in general, what marks true freedom (even more so than national freedom) is not independence, but dependence. The specific revelation of this point in scripture itself reinforces the argument in texts such as Proverbs 14:34 and Jeremiah 18:7-10.
What about present circumstances? Reliance upon God entails exercising forgiveness towards those who have wronged us. Whenever we forgive, we are laying aside our so-called "rights" of gaining vengeance and instead depending upon what Jesus did on the cross as our paradigm for spiritual freedom (Ephesians 4:32; Colossians 3:13). There is never any greater freedom found than when we forgive. In Jesus Christ, our past and our present find freedom.
Unlike our civil freedom in which we broke ties with a human Sovereign, the Gospel declares that true freedom is only found when we are reconciled to the Divine Sovereign. Spiritual freedom is dependence upon God.
On February 20, 1962, decorated WWII and Korean War veteran John Glenn circumnavigated our globe three times in a span of just under 5 hours. Reaching speeds of over 17,000 m.p.h, Glenn achieved a feat that no one had ever accomplished. How did he do it? He did this otherwise impossible feat by climbing into the Mercury program space capsule known as "Friendship 7". Moreover, the laws of lift and science of rocketry were necessary to overcome the other leading influence - gravity. Glenn's inaugural journey was one of the quintessential moments that launched the modern space race. You and I dear friend need to be "in Christ" if we are to declare dependence on God and be set free from condemnation.
1). Freed from condemnation as a result of depending on His righteousness (Romans 8:1-2).