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The online Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
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Monday, July 5, 2021

Manor Township, Lancaster County farm
Last Friday we passed this farm scene in Manor Township here in Lancaster County. Lancaster County holds the distinction of being the most productive non-irrigated farming county in the United States and ranks second in acres of preserved farmland with more than 58,000 acres preserved. We are pleased that the farmland across from our home is preserved. More than 99% of Lancaster County farms are family owned.
(Click on photo to enlarge)

"Jesus, The Glorious Emancipator"

Message summary: Are you free indeed? Is Jesus your Glorious Emancipator?

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“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36). “For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God” (Romans 8:20,21).

Today here in the USA many are enjoying a paid holiday on a three day weekend! We are planning to have a cookout this afternoon and, depending on the weather, will also ride our bikes. "Independence Day" in the USA is historically a time we celebrate our political freedoms and give thanks to God which we did so in our worship service yesterday and in our small group. So many take these freedoms for granted and may not even notice that they are systematically being diminished.

We are aware that these messages are read all over the world by our fellow brothers and sisters who live under varying degrees of political freedom, some with very little. Most live in countries with relatively good freedoms. Others live in places with religious oppression and in some cases outright persecution. However it's unlikely that this material reaches those living in actual slavery, though tragically, millions still live under such conditions.

As we prepared the message this morning we read about another mass kidnapping of 140 school children in Northwest Nigeria, a country where Christians are constantly besieged by Muslim terrorists. We are now praying for those children and their heartbroken families. What a stark contrast to the pleasant day we have here in rural Pennsylvania and the present peace.

Today we share about a freedom from a type of slavery that is available to all and infinitely greater than any political or religious freedoms we may or may not enjoy in this present life. One hundred or one thousand years into eternity, for those who have surrendered their lives to Jesus Christ, the place where we lived and the conditions we lived under during our brief earthly sojourn, will be of little regard.

Once I was bound by sin’s galling fetters,
Chained like a slave, I struggled in vain;
But I received a glorious freedom,
When Jesus broke my fetters in twain.

In John 8 Jesus confronted the Pharisees and religious leaders of His day who challenged His authority. The encounter specifically began when Jesus asserted, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12). The Pharisees challenged Jesus and the validity of His testimony and of course that has been at the heart of resistance to God’s redemption plan ever since.

Jesus taught that those who “hold” to His teaching are truly His disciples (v. 31).  He said to them “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32).  This especially insulted the proud Pharisees who responded, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?” (v. 34).

But Jesus was speaking of a slavery that impacts the entire human race; rich or poor, powerful or weak, highly educated or unlearned, politically free or oppressed.  People from every background are slaves to sin!  Yet this is the very slavery from which Jesus came to free us: “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36).

In Romans 8 Paul is referring to this slavery to sin and the freedom those who are redeemed are able to experience as children of God. It is, indeed, a glorious, wonderful freedom! It is the greatest manumission which is "the act or process of formal emancipation from slavery".

If you are a citizen of a free country don’t take it for granted. Won't you join us in giving thanks to God for this wonderful privilege as we also consider those who sacrificed for our freedoms. May it also be a prompter to pray for our brethren who do not have these freedoms. Above all give thanks to God that Jesus paid the supreme sacrifice so that we might be freed from the slavery of sin. That’s something that we can all rejoice in no matter the conditions we live in on this side of eternity.

Today, are you free indeed? Is Jesus your Glorious Emancipator?

Glorious freedom, wonderful freedom,
No more in chains of sin I repine!
Jesus the glorious Emancipator,
Now and forever He shall be mine.

Be encouraged today, (Hebrews 3:13)

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying man Daily prayer: Father, how wonderful it is to enjoy the privileges available to those who live in a free country. We give thanks for those who enlisted and served in our military, fighting for and maintaining our independence, along with those who voluntarily served in an alternative manner. And how glorious it is to enjoy freedom from sin, thanks to the sacrifice of Your Son Jesus, on our behalf. Our lives, once enslaved to sin, now enjoy the freedom from that which once held us captive to Satan’s bondage. We live in victory because You have set us free and we are now free indeed. Thank You, Father, for delivering us from the domain of darkness and transferring us into the kingdom of Your beloved Son in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of our sins! Amen.

Christ provides:
1) Freedom from the bondage of sin (Romans 6:18).
2) Freedom from guilt and shame (Colossians 1:21-23).
3) Freedom from fear of death (Hebrews 2:15)

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Glorious Freedom" Video  Gaither Vocal Band

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Harpers Ferry 45th anniversary photo
Our forty-fifth anniversary photo taken in Harpers Ferry, WV
(Click on photo for larger view)

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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