Freedom cannot be ‘wholesale’

Submitted by
Pastor Sean Ward

In July of this year, in a speech by U.S. Congressman Trey Gowdy to the students of Liberty University, Gowdy shared two questions he posed to those employed at his office.
The first question was which do you value more: truth or freedom? Everyone present answered they valued freedom more than truth.
The second question was which do you value more: unity or diversity? Everyone except one answered they valued diversity more than unity.
Last month, I facilitated a men’s conference in Manitoba, where I posed these two questions during a guided discussion. One of the men attending was a former resident of Rwanda and was present during the genocide there more than 20 years ago.
He spoke passionately about a time when many hacked their neighbours to death in the streets celebrating their so-called personal freedom. Yet today, those same individuals are being tracked world-wide to be brought to justice and their freedom has become limited.
Throughout history, it can be demonstrated that freedom without definition or the rule of law will produce anarchy. Similarly, diversity without a foundation of definable unity and core values will produce chaos and destruction.
Freedom cannot be “wholesale” for if this idea exists independent of definable limits, everyone becomes subject to his own law and the term civilized no longer applies. The conscience that responds to the appeal of the common good is lost indefinitely.
More than 2,000 years ago, Pontius Pilate asked the question during the trial of Jesus of Nazareth, “What is truth”? Are there any absolutes? Is truth just an idea or a compilation of thoughts subject to endless debate, or is there an ultimate goal we can strive towards?
What Pontius Pilate did not recognize that day was the example was right in front of him! Jesus was truth personified; God in human form! When Jesus gave up His life on the cross, He procured forgiveness for every human being.
The love of Jesus for all people was passed on by His Spirit to believers and produced an atmosphere where woman became valued, all nations became equal, and servants and masters alike were called to a level of responsibility that guaranteed the benefit of all.
The good news is that access into this life of freedom and love is obtained by trusting in the substitute death of Jesus for your life and that His blood has paid the price for your liberty.
In trusting in Him, you must turn away from serving self and live a life in pursuit of clean thoughts and right living; you must personally reject all forms of perversion and wickedness, and pursue holiness to the common benefit of all men.
As you are baptized in water in the precious name of Jesus, He has promised He will fill you with His Spirit!
Only in the power of the Spirit of Jesus men can be born out of their insecurities and vices into a life that is truly free from self-centeredness and live free to serve one another without reservation.