We value freedom and strive to protect freedoms. But do we truly understand freedom? Freedom for many means doing what you want without control or coercion. Jesus helps us to understand true freedom: “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (Gospel). Jesus says that you will never be free by living however you want. Take that attitude towards life and you’ll be a slave. You’ll only be free—spiritually, emotionally, eternally—“If you hold to my teaching” and therefore “know the truth.” A key principle Martin Luther established through the Reformation is sola scriptura, Scripture alone. Luther thought it was the answer to all of life’s fundamental questions. On what basis is a belief or practice justified of rejected? Scripture alone. Who or what is the final arbiter of truth? Scripture alone. Heirs of the Reformation still bind themselves to Scripture. Does restricting ourselves in this manner curtail freedom? Just the opposite is true. God’s divinely inspired truth brings freedom. It frees us from slavery to sinful delusions, the burden of guilt, and any earthly power. This week we see that when we willingly bind ourselves to truth, Jesus keeps his promise. The truth sets us free.


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