Bondage. Yoke. Slavery. Strangle. Stronghold. Enslaved. Struggle.
What do you picture when you read these words?
Many in the mid 1800s in this country were looking to this man to free them from a life of slavery they had known. They wanted a man to free them so they could live the life they wanted to live. He did so. But, years ago - Jesus did something so much more freeing for us - on the cross.
The first words up there are very strong words to me, especially in certain areas of my life: areas of sin that Satan throws at me.
Galatians 5.1 is my verse for the day in an area of sin that I'm trying to "live by the Spirit so I will not gratify the desires of the flesh" - Here it is:
"It is for freedom that Christ has set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery."
Paul is writing to the church at Galatia. The bulk of his letter is dealing with the law and its legalistic hold on the church there. Christ did come to set us free from the harshness of the Law - our hope and freedom and loyalty is in HIM - not in how well we uphold the law.
But, knowing the above - he also says we should not go back and live like we once were living. i love the last bit of this verse - therefore (since Christ is your freedom) don't return to being slaves again to the law - don't return to being slaves to sin in your life - be slaves, servants, bond servants of Jesus Christ - who paid your penalty and has set you free.
We, by the power of the Spirit, can strangle sin in our lives - literally like a wrestler puts a stranglehold on his opponent. We need to strangle sin and let the only thing that has any hold on us in this life - be Jesus.