Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

2 Corinthians 3: 17

 

The Spirit of the Lord is truly everywhere. For me, it is impossible to observe the striking beauty of natural creation and consider the intelligence behind its design and not observe the presence of God’s Spirit. He is in the transformation that occurs in people when they surrender their lives to Christ, and the Spirit is tangible in the multitudes of impossible situations that are resolved in answer to prayer. I admit without hesitation or even a hint of doubt that I believe in God, in Yahweh, Who has been forever, Who is forever, and Who is One but also exists in the three persons of Father, Son and Spirit. The possibility of this viewpoint changing is something that I do not consider at all. So, it might be easy for me to comprehend that any and all of the good, love, peace, order, and healing that I observe in the world is the result of the active presence of the Lord’s Spirit. Yet I think that there is more.

 

Observation of God’s good work is a worthy endeavor, but God doesn’t call upon His people to be observers alone. We are called by Christ to be people who live out God’s righteousness in every way and in all aspects of our existence. My perspective is that we live in a world and in times within its history where people are making decisions to seek after self gain, comfort, pleasure, and power at the expense of pursuing God’s truth and of deciding to live in His righteousness. Humanity seems determined to camp out around the Tree of the Knowledge of good and evil as they forsake dwelling under the Tree of Life which is God, Himself. As Christians we have a mandate from God that was made perfect and empowered in Christ’s life and sacrifice and that is guided by the Spirit. This mandate is one of engagement in and with our world. Jesus’ last words on this earth say it well, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28: 19, 20

 

This is our mandate. These are our marching orders. Herein lies God’s determination of the focus for the lives of His people. Wherever there is turning away from truth, the sin must be confronted. This starts with ourselves, with our deep-seated attitudes, fears, and habits. But it doesn’t stop there, for Satan whispers the lie of unworthiness into our ears in order to disable Christian witness before it starts to form on our lips. The making of disciples starts with honest personal confession and repentance, and it is brought to life as we accept God’s grace, forgiveness and healing. This is where freedom becomes reality. Christians are called by God to live boldly, courageously and lovingly in our world. When we sit quietly and watch passively as evil is perpetrated in our world, when people in leadership enact laws that are an abomination to God, and when our neighbors are living their ways toward eternal death, we are acting as if Christ never gave Himself for our freedom. We must speak out fearlessly, live righteously regardless of the cost, and love everyone totally. This is God’s calling for His people. This is true freedom.