We are prisoners of war who’ve sided with the enemy, becoming enemies ourselves. Yet God, desperate to restore his cherished creations to their rightful place in relationship with him, launched a daring rescue behind enemy lines. “Under cover of night, he stole into the enemy’s camp incognito, the Ancient of Days disguised as a newborn. [Jesus’ coming to earth], the Incarnation, was a daring raid into enemy territory. The whole world lay under the power of the evil one (the Liar) and we were held in the dungeons of darkness.” (B. Curtis & J Eldredge, The Sacred Romance) God gave it all to rescue us. Why? Because he created us to live with and love him. We are his prized, carefully crafted masterpieces in the making.
And he wouldn’t let us go without a fight.
That’s the good news of the Gospel. The Church often talks about this idea of being “saved,” but I think sometimes we miss the full depth of the meaning of it. The greek word most often used in the original writings is “sozo,” which means: saved, delivered, preserved, healed and made whole. This week, we’ll be talking about the first part of that.
Jesus is the Chainbreaker. He’s the one who stepped out of all the good and perfection of heaven itself to get in the mud and the dust of our battle field. Ultimately, he voluntarily traded places with us, taking the consequences of our sin-sentencing once and for all, so that we could be saved. Saved from the torment and the prison. Delivered from the consequences of our enslavement. And preserved in relationship with him, now and forever.
He’s our rescuer. Our hero. Our champion. Our savior.
God did not send his Son into the world to judge and condemn the world, but to be its Savior and rescue it! (John 3:17 TPT) This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. (1 John 4:17 NLT)
To set us free. To rescue us from the Liar and win our hearts back to his.
To turn to Jesus, we take his hand. We acknowledge our position as prisoners and enemies who’ve fought to do things our way and failed miserably. But it’s not with shame or condemnation – feelings of worthlessness or filth – it’s with gratitude. Your Maker says you’re worth a high price – the highest. Your Maker says you’re worth DYING for. To save us from the consequences of our betrayal and superiority complex, he took our place. It’s done.
As we turn, as we take this gift he offers, we look up into the eyes of Love itself and somehow, we get an unfathomable prize: all of him and all he has. Love. Forgiveness. Peace. Joy. Kindness. Patience. It doesn’t take away the weight of the battle field, but he comes along side and helps us carry it. We don’t carry it alone. Never alone.
We’re invited into relationship with Love himself. To be saved. Delivered. Preserved – both now and forever. With the promise of restoration, healing, wholeness, and purpose. And that makes all the difference.
Join the Journey
Consider these journal prompts as you think about what’s in this post:
- Read this: “For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, in his grace, freely makes us right in his sight. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins.” (Romans 3:23-24 NLT) What’s your reaction to the idea of Jesus as your rescuer? Why do you think that is?
- Consider this: if slavery is living according to our own nature and impulses, without regard for consequences, then true freedom is aligning with God’s better ways – love, peace, joy, etc. What does the concept of FREEDOM mean to you? Make some notes.
- What are some of the things you might need freedom from or areas you need freedom in? Make a list with two columns. On the left, write the area or place you’re stuck. On the right, describe where those come from. …
- Save this list to begin research. God gave us the Bible as a roadmap and guidepost to understand his story, his heart, and his ways. It takes time to learn and unlearn what we think is best. Pick an area and look it up in the back reference area of a bible. Then read some passages and write a brief description of what life might look like if you were free in this area.
- Living in freedom isn’t something that happens all at once; it’s a practice of realigning ourselves with God’s viewpoint. Ask Jesus what the first, practical step towards that freedom. Share that step with a safe friend and ask for accountability.
Remember – this is just a starting point. This is an idea of how we can begin the journey. This is one small step. Stay tuned in for more tips and insights on stepping forward into #fiercefreedom.