I just want to lie down in the mud.
That is what I wrote in my journal the other night. Not a very sanctified thought for a Christian.
My next thought was, “Where did that come from?” That came from bondage.
Jesus said you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free. What truth is that?
Jesus said he was the way, the truth, and the life.
Truth is Jesus.
Jesus is truth.
The Gospel is truth.
We are sinners by birth, because of our parents in Eden. They desired to be like God and questioned his goodness. That betrayal plunged us into a sinful, broken world where Adam’s posterity is born sinful and we delight to act out our sinful nature.
In the middle of all that mess, 2000 years ago, God sent his Son into our world as a man, like us, but sinless. He lived a life impossible for us, sinless, and then evil thought it had won and crucified him. While on the cross God the Father laid on his Son the sins of all his people, so that God’s wrath might be absorbed by God the Son.
When Jesus, on the cross said, “It is finished.” It meant my sins and yours were paid for. And to show God was pleased and atonement was accomplished, Jesus rose from the dead on the third day as had been prophesied.
So, when the Holy Spirit gives us a new heart and a new spirit, he makes us a new creation. We become children of God, adopted into his family. Not based on anything good in us, but based solely on God’s good pleasure.
Now, he calls us to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30).
With all your mind means learning everything you can about him. Jesus is calling us to theology – the study of God.
It seems these days, thinking is hard for us. It is hard to think in a whirlwind of noise and instant gratification. As Christians, Jesus calls us to come away with him to quiet and his word.
In his word, led by his Spirit, we find true freedom in this life. The freedom to live free from guilt, shame, despair, disgrace, depression, deceit, and on and on; whatever keeps us bound in sin, Jesus came to set us free from all of that.
His only two commands are to love him with our all and to love our neighbor as our self.
He has given us everything we need to do that.
His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence (2 Peter 1:3).
So be free, the Truth has set us free.
Let me end by saying freedom doesn’t mean we can do whatever we want. If knowing the Creator of the universe who is our Rescuer, doesn’t lead to striving to be holy as he is holy, then something is dreadfully wrong. Jesus changes our “want to”. We want to be like the one we love with our all.
Freedom lies in the path of obedience to love.
This is what I remember when I feel like lying down in the mud. I preach the Gospel to myself.
I remind myself that I am free in Christ. Jesus bought my freedom for me.
Free people are happy people. They don’t lie down in the mud. They rejoice.
So, instead of lying down I do a little jig in the middle of the mud.
Happy heart, happy feet!