OVER THE PAST CENTURY AND MORE, the currents of change have circulated among the nations, foreshadowing the grand reconciling of all things which injured time demands. Oppression cannot last forever. The groan of nations cannot forever be suppressed. Revenge must happen. Reconciliation must come. All earth is caught in the throes of its travail. A new day of liberty is dawning. Change is wafted upon each restless breeze and shudders unstoppable through every fiber of the earth. Change cannot be paused, cannot be sidestepped. Change marches on unstopping and unstoppable, in answer to the cry of earth’s age-long groan.
Humanity unites in its cry for freedom: freedom from the slavery of oppressive systems; freedom from classism and racism and every form of discrimination and abuse; freedom from dead religion; freedom from stale traditions; freedom from the kind of conservative despotism that shackles me from being who I am by drawing a box around me to fit me into outgrown, outdated traditions. We desire freedom to be who we were meant to be–freedom to be what our Creator envisioned. The quest for freedom is in our DNA. Whether or not we have always recognized our chains, we have all felt the stir of freedom within our heart. But where can we find this freedom?
True freedom requires a space in which every person can be loosed to give his full contribution, an economy in which exchange happens without prejudice. Freedom is more than nominal rights written within a musty law code, whose interpretation and application are subject to the caprice of men who may or may not understand their original meaning, and who tend to appropriate liberty for their own benefit. Freedom requires an under-girding of people who support me personally and allow me to be who I was meant to be. It requires a safe space where I know I have room to exercise my gifting. This space is defined, not by a set of rules, but by a living administration.
Freedom has a context, a frame of reference. Without this structure, it quickly degenerates into a breeding ground for predators–people who abuse their freedom to exploit the weak. It is people who create the context of freedom. A living, competent, inclusive government is what creates freedom in dynamic, practicable form: a government capable of binding the captor and of loosing the captive, a government capable of producing unity and singleness of purpose amid diversity and complexity of expression. Within the structure defined by the three chief apostles, each finds space to operate in his own role. We can thus move onward with the Great Eternal in the order of His plan without falling prey to beastly systems of carnal government. Beastly systems can sneak in through gaps in the rule book, but they cannot penetrate the barrier of the living three.
There is a false freedom which seeks to undermine the true liberty of the children of God, whose children we have all been created. It springs not from the context of God’s liberating government, but from the context of a system whose very basis is slavery. This system makes pretext of liberty, but it is only another form of oppression. It emancipates men in name but not in practice. Freedom without the enabling structure of God’s government is not far removed from “freedom to hunger, freedom to the winds and rains of heaven, freedom without roofs to cover [our] heads” (Frederick Douglass). It is freedom without fathers to unite us, freedom without a context for our identity, freedom to be blown about by the winds of a false narrative.
True freedom is freedom of identity, freedom to be you and not someone else. It is freedom to not be defined or confined by other’s opinions or ways of expression or cultural biases. Inside of true freedom, you can be true to yourself and the genius inside you. You can give who you are without fear of rejection, without threat of coercion, but as a part of fair and just exchange.
We hear a lot of messaging in our society telling us to “be who we are.” This message is entirely correct given from the correct frame of reference, but given in the wrong context from the wrong frame of reference, lands men in a deeper bondage.“While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage” (2 Peter 2:19). Be who you are….but don’t allow Hollywood to tell you who you are. Don’t allow your identity to be dictated by a culture riddled with systemic slavery. Don’t let your freedom be defined by the makers of bondage.
You cannot find freedom and know who you are until you find whom you belong with. False platforms with sinister agendas have abused the right principle of freedom of identity to produce skewed and deceptive messaging. They seek to define your identity by interpreting your feelings and desires for you from their twisted frame of reference. You cannot be true to your identity without being true to your own parents and your own biology. Do not accept a manufactured identity produced by people who are not your own people. Do not let social media culture or television culture define for you who you are based on how they interpret your feelings. Your true identity is given to you prophetically, and your true freedom is realized in connection with the right people.
“And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free…If the son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free in deed.” John 8:32, 36.
You cannot be true to your identity without being true to your own parents and your own biology. Do not let social media culture or television culture define you. Your true identity is given to you prophetically, and your true freedom is realized in connection with the right people.