How can a law give freedom?
Life and death are issues that captivate our very lives, we cannot be free from something we are born into and must ultimately experience.
We are in a universe surrounded by laws and the governing principles that effect the physical world we live in.
The law of gravity is a prime example, measured at 9.8 metre per second squared this law comes into affect on falling bodies.
There are also laws that affect human relationships as well, such as marriage and the laws of the land to protect men against actions of other men.
The law of gravity is of great benefit to us, as it keeps our feet firmly on the ground at the right time.
If we do not consider the effect of laws, this can be harmful to us. There is heat, cold, electricity and the one mentioned gravity; treated right we will not be harmed by defying these laws.
The bungy jumper can appear to be defying the law of gravity, but in fact if we break the rope that ties him to this law, he will be in great danger of collision with the ground.
In actual fact the principle of bungy jumping uses the physical laws to spring the person up again without causing harm to the human body, not too much anyway.
Moral laws are another institution developed for the benefit of all mankind to live in harmony and not cause harm on one another. The foundations of moral law are absolutes which constitute right and wrong.
When we bring up the subject of right and wrong this usually produces negative emotions of guilt, resentment of authority and our rights as human beings.
Before I get into the nature of law, I want to convey a true story of human tragedy, a very well known event of the early 20th century, which has captured the attention of history as it tells a truly tragic event.
This story has now been portrayed in a recent blockbuster academy award winner movie, which you most probably have seen and will help paint the picture of these events which I will briefly describe in the following.
In the year 1912, the Titanic, made its historic journey across the sea towards America. Although there were seven warning messages about icebergs given, this did not stop this magnificent boat from racing full steam ahead.
On Sunday, April 14, the Titanic hit an iceberg. Early the next day April 15, 1912, the Titanic sank to the bottom of the sea.
The Titanic had 15 transverse bulkheads which were designed to be watertight because the bulkheads were well above the waterline. The ship could still float if at the most four compartments were flooded.
When the Titanic met its tragedy, five compartments were flooded and sadly this was beyond the limit to stay afloat and the ship's designer had to concede she was sunk.
Many of the passengers could not make it into the lifeboats even though most were sent off as little as half full.
People were stunned into a state of panic mixed with inertia, as fear and disbelief hit home in this dreadful moment.
Even the band kept playing in a vain attempt to bring calm until the final moments of the ships doom.
Many passengers from the lower decks could not make it to the top, there were barriers preventing them as they were from the lower classes.
Even in lifeboats, many passengers still felt the Titanic would not sink.
The Titanic weighed about 46,000 Tons and was about 900 feet long and 92 feet wide.
Each funnel was huge, big enough to drive two trains through. The ship was as high as an eleven story building.
The Titanic had lifeboats for 1,178 people, as there were 3,511 passengers and crew this fell well short, they could not conceive that this ship would sink.
This tragedy has captured the imagination of the public and remains in our memories as a true account of an unnecessary loss of human life.
These people had put their trust and lives at stake in presumption that this invincible ship, most glorious in human ingenuity, handsomely adorned, lavish in every way, the Titanic, they felt, surely this masterpiece would never sink.
They believed that this ship of magnificent proportions and such a brilliant human design was invincible against the laws of physics.
It was with presumptuous and arrogant delusions of immortality, that the captain and the crew with passengers in full support, raced this ship through hazardous waters in a belief that it was unstoppable.
The reckless challenge of these laws of cause and effect would prove to be fatal for most on board this grand ship.
It was later discovered by scientists' analysis that the steel used on the Titanic although solid had a large content of sulphur and this along with the cold temperatures of the waters, caused the steel to be brittle on impact.
Rather than bending, when the Titanic hit the iceberg it tore open and shattered the steel causing a greater gash and damage to the hull.
I would have to say that this account paints a picture of human tragedy and loss and I can relate this to another true and tragic condition of mankind.
Let me introduce a law that opposes mankind and binds us to death.
In Romans 8:2, we read about "the law of sin and death", This is a truly tragic condition imposed upon mankind and has put us on a ship destined to sink. The law of sin and death places all of mankind in a death sentence with no escape from it's grip and power.
What is this law and how did it come into affect?
Romans 5:12 we read that death entered into the human race through Adam, when Adam sinned, he died spiritually and was subject to a sinful nature and was bound to sin and then all mankind inherited this sin and death through the bloodline.
Romans 8:3(a) says that the ten commandments could not help us, as our flesh or our human nature is weak and we cannot fulfill the righteous requirements of the law in this condition.
A law is at work in our inner man from birth and the effect of this is sin and death.
At this point I am compelled to bring to you Good News, God has offered a lifeline, from heaven above HE graciously offers a rescue ship, that was sent to save us from a destiny of human loss and tragedy. Jesus came to provide freedom from a condition of sin and death.
God so loved the world that He sent His Son Jesus to take upon Himself the punishment due to us by sin, He took our sin and death upon Himself and gave us a provision of freedom and rescued mankind.
God has established a new law to provide salvation to mankind, "The law of the spirit of life". Romans 8:1,2. "There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the spirit.
For the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made us free from the law of sin and death."
We can now be free of the effects of sin and death. Jesus has taken the effects of the death sentence from us lifting the condemnation that we had under a law of sin and death.
When we believe that Jesus took our sins upon Himself on the cross and no longer want to live in a sinful condition, a change takes place in our spirit that was dead due to the condition of sin and death. Our spirit is then made alive and governed now by the new law of the spirit of life.
When we receive God's lifeline in the form of Jesus, we become born again in our spirit. At this point we now have the very nature of God in us and have an empowering to fulfill the righteous requirements of the law, where previously we were lost and in a state of sin, unable to please God with the law of sin and death overwhelming our old nature.
Now it is as if a remodeling took place and we are made again as good as new.
Romans 7:6 declares that we have newness of spirit.
This is the Gospel or good news that we no longer have to be destined to a life of sin and death, but can be free by simply receiving this salvation offered by God, we just believe what He said and promised to us by receiving from His unfailing love and mercy the gift of the life of Jesus.
We were born in a tragic state and destined to sink until Jesus came to rescue us.
I have observed that man has a need inside to be immortal and not die, he wants to get on board an indestructible ship. The Titanic was also called the ship of dreams, this is like a dream that we have, to never die and live forever.
Talking about dreams let me now relate to a prophecy or a dream given many years B.C. speaking forward to a future event.
Hosea 13:14 "I will ransom them from the power of the grave, I will redeem them from death."
"O Death I will be your plagues."
"O Grave I will be your destruction."
God was actually talking in prophecy looking ahead to Jesus who would take away the power of sin and death. He was actually talking to the personality of death, declaring to it that God will serve notice on it's grip and release those bound by it's power.
1 Corinthians 15:54b-57 "Death is swallowed up in victory."
O Death, where is your sting?
O Hades, where is your victory?"
The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."
Now that Jesus has come and died for the sin of mankind, we see in this passage in the bible written after Jesus had come, he is saying to death and sin, where is your power now? Where is your sting?
That is the truth for us now that Jesus has given us the victory over sin and death.
You see these passages in the bible reinforce each other and are confirmation of the good news about Jesus.
Now I know that yes, we will die the mortal death when our body gives in and we bite the dust so to speak. However, I am not talking about that altogether, although the premature death can be challenged.
I am talking about the power of the law of sin and death, which binds mankind to acts of sin, which in turn is death and destruction.
Now the law of the spirit of life has set us free from the condemning sentence that imprisons us to sin and death, the law of the spirit of life releases us from doing wrong acts that we really do not want to do.
Jesus offers His life and a new law of life which we can now live by, in His power. Now we can live righteous and be continually changed piece by piece, to be free from every area of sin that has us bound to act in it.
Besides that, there is the eternal life, living forever with God in heaven, forever is a long time you know, you can't argue with a rescue package like that.
This life is freedom, as we can now measure up to God's laws of righteousness by taking on our ship, His life and then we won't sink any longer as we would have done quite naturally, in our old ways of sin.
You may have noticed that to sin comes quite naturally to us, it takes no effort really to be tempted and go for some really juicy bits of sin or bad actions.
I'm sorry if you feel you are righteous without Jesus, well I guess that it is from self, which makes it being self righteous.
I admit it, I am a good old, or should I say bad old sinner when I was without the life of Jesus working in me, so I am completely accepting of God's lifeline to help me out of this condition and thankyou very much Jesus.
Now I am in the process of being changed to be more like Jesus and loving it, this freedom is like no other freedom, it is a permanent changing force.
The law of the spirit of life is much more powerful than a dream, it is an established and
infallible principle, which has been set by Jesus, making it possible for us to be free of sin forever.
Are you in a boat destined to sink?
As grand as man can plan, he is sunk if he stays on board this death ship.
We all need a Saviour, we are all in the same boat, a lifeline has been given by God Himself to free you from this tragic destiny. God came to offer His life and a lifeline to mankind.
You can be born again.
You can be free.
"The law of the spirit of life".
If you have not received God's unsurpassed love and have not yet become reconciled to Him, I invite you to be changed forever and be born again.
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