Today we celebrate the freedoms we have here in America. We remember our history and ponder all that has happened through the years since America was first discovered. We must never take for granted the hardships, the sacrifices, and the lives that were given so that we might live here in peace and freedom.
Freedom comes with a cost!
Years ago America was the answer to many people who wanted a new land where they could worship God the way they believed God intended them to. Many people were searching for a place to live where their rulers wouldn’t require them to worship God in the ways that weren’t according to the Bible.
America was the answer!
Here in America they found peace and freedom to worship God. It came with a cost, but by God’s power, love, and amazing grace, religious freedom still remains today.
The history of America’s freedom is somewhat similar to the history of our spiritual freedom.
Christopher Columbus left the comfort of his land in search of the treasures of India.
Jesus left the comfort of His throne in heaven to come in search of the treasures of men’s souls.
Christopher Columbus’ discovery became an answer to many who were bound by their ruler’s laws, and forced to worship in ways that went against the truths found in the Bible.
Jesus’ presence here on earth brought an answer to those who were in bondage to the religious leaders of the day, and to those who were held captive by the lies of Satan.
The peace and freedom of Christopher Columbus’ discovery came with a great cost; it required much suffering, blood shed, and sacrificial death.
The peace and freedom that Jesus brought also came with a great price, great suffering, blood shed, and sacrificial death on the cross.
Jesus is the answer!
But as seen in both situations the great price of peace and freedom can be forgotten. They can be taken for granted. And they can be taken away.
When we forget our history we loose our identity.
When we loose our identity we forget our purpose.
When we loose our purpose we no longer consider the personal cost our peace and freedom requires.
As Americans and as Christians we must remember our history. We must know who we are, why we are here, and do what is required of us to live in the peace and freedom that has been made available to us.
Freedom comes with a cost!
When the Israelites were set free from their bondage in Egypt and entered the promised land, a land flowing with milk and honey; a land intended for their peace and freedom, God gave them this warning…
“But that is the time to be careful! Beware that in your plenty you do not forget the Lord your God and disobey his commands, regulations, and decrees that I am giving you today. For when you have become full and prosperous and have built fine homes to live in, and when your flocks and herds have become very large and your silver and gold have multiplied along with everything else, be careful! Do not become proud at that time and forget the Lord your God, who rescued you from slavery in the land of Egypt. Do not forget that he led you through the great and terrifying wilderness with its poisonous snakes and scorpions, where it was so hot and dry. He gave you water from the rock! He fed you with manna in the wilderness, a food unknown to your ancestors. He did this to humble you and test you for your own good. He did all this so you would never say to yourself, ‘I have achieved this wealth with my own strength and energy.’ Remember the Lord your God. He is the one who gives you power to be successful, in order to fulfill the covenant he confirmed to your ancestors with an oath.” Deuteronomy 8:11-18
…and I believe it is a warning for us today.
The Israelites fought battles, with the supernatural power of God, to gain their freedom.
Our forefathers fought battles, with the supernatural power of God, to gain our freedom.
Jesus fought a battle, with the supernatural power of God, to gain the freedom of all who believe.
So we too have battles we must fight, with the supernatural power of God, to maintain the freedoms we have here in America and the freedom we have in Christ.
“I solemnly urge you in the presence of God and Christ Jesus, who will someday judge the living and the dead when he comes to set up his Kingdom: Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching. For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. They will reject the truth and chase after myths. But you should keep a clear mind in every situation. Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord. Work at telling others the Good News, and fully carry out the ministry God has given you. As for me, my life has already been poured out as an offering to God. The time of my death is near. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful. And now the prize awaits me—the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing.” 2 Timothy 4:1-8
There is a day coming when the freedoms of America will fade and the perfect freedom of God’s Kingdom will reign forever. But until that day comes, God encourages us to make the most of our time here on earth. Whether we continue to enjoy freedoms here in America, or whether they are taken away, we have been made free in Christ, and that freedom can never be taken from us.
But in the meantime, there is a good fight we are to fight, there is a race we are to run.
The freedoms we have mustn’t be forgotten, taken for granted, or allowed to be taken from us. We must remember all Jesus did for us and choose to live in the freedom He provided. We must daily walk by faith in the freedom of God’s word. And we must fight against the lies of the enemy that try to deceive and take away the freedoms we have been given.
And when we live fully in the freedom of Christ we will joyfully and courageously tell others the good news of the freedom they have been given in Jesus!
So, on this day of remembrance, let us make the most of the freedoms we still have here in America to carry out the ministry opportunities God has given us.
Freedom comes with a cost!
What will it cost you?
Are you willing to pay the price?