Pastor Granillo: The Slavery Delusion

By Pastor Raul Granillo
La Vista Church
White Rock
 
This is true of any freedom: You are obligated, if you want to stay free, to not give yourself back to slavery.
 
The Bible tells about God using Moses to lead the Hebrews out of Egypt. The God, YHWH, freed the Hebrews from their Egyptian slave masters.
Although God used the plagues to reveal His absolute power over Egypt, the Hebrews still found that their fear of Egypt held them in bondage.
 
At the Red Sea, they saw the Egyptians pursuing them and cried to Moses: Didn’t we say to you in Egypt, “Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!” Exodus 14:12 (NIV)
 
God parted the sea so that the Hebrews could pass and then God closed the waters over the Egyptian army, once again, showing His absolute power over even the most powerful slave masters in the world. Yet the Hebrews continued to struggle with fear. They feared the unknown. They feared that this God, YHWH, would leave them, or otherwise betray them. The Hebrews questioned God and considered returning to Egypt to, once again, become slaves (Exodus 15:24; 16:3). Their fears even caused them to remember their slave masters in Egypt as providers and protectors.
 
We remember the fish we ate in Egypt at no cost– also the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic. Numbers 11:5 (NIV, emphasis added)
 
The Hebrews seemed to struggle so much with their fears that they forgot the inherent cost of slavery—the loss of their freedom for the sole benefit of an oppressor. While the Bible doesn’t really say, I wonder how many of the Hebrews were so terrified in the wilderness that they left their tribes and went back to Egypt to, once again, submit to slavery under Egyptian protection. I wonder, because I see many Christians who talk about the freedom they have received from God, and then work very hard to justify returning to relationships with previous slave masters. How many people, today, are so terrified of the freedom God offers that they would beg their slave masters to take them back?
 
Paul warns the Christians in Rome: Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation– but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it. For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” Romans 8:12-15 (NIV)
 
Paul is making the obvious point that, if you want to stay free, you are obligated to not give yourself back to slavery. Sin is a slave master that demands your life. God desires us to be free from such a slave master and offers freedom to anyone who would receive it.
 
Too often, it seems, the Christian finds him or herself justifying a relationship with sin. Sin has but one common characteristic, it brings death. Death to families, death to dreams, death to relationships, death to all things until, ironically, death seems to be the only escape from sin. Why, then, are we so intent on flirting with sin or convincing ourselves that we can keep it under control? Why, then, do we, so often, justify sin? Why would we make an excuse for something that only seeks to enslave our lives? Why would we risk so much for something that offers so little? Why, indeed?
 
Friends, sin has nothing to offer you that justifies what it desires to take. Sin has a way of making us slaves and convincing us we that we are free beyond measure. Do not be fooled, sin cannot be negotiated with nor expected to do anything but bring death.
 
Are you truly free, or do you simply embrace slavery? There is a huge difference.
 
If you have a Biblical question, comment, or concern, please feel free to email me at raul@lavistanaz.org. To find out more about La Vista Church, or to hear this and other messages, visit our website at www.lavistanaz.org. Follow Pastor Raul on Twitter @RaulGranillo007. Please come join us as we fix our eyes on Jesus. We meet Sundays at 9 a.m. for Sunday school and 10 a.m. for worship. Everyone is welcome!
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