Bought by the Blood

July 4, 2009

J.C. Ryle on finding independence in Christ

Filed under: freedom in Christ,J.C. Ryle,John — cubsfan1980 @ 5:10 pm
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31 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” 33 They answered him, “We are offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How is it that you say, ‘You will become free’?”

34 Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. 35 The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

“Liberty, most Englishmen know, is rightly esteemed one of the highest temporal blessings.  Freedom from foreign dominion, a free constitution, free trade, a free press, civil and religous liberty, what a world of meaning lies  beneath these phrases!  How many would sacrifice life and fortune to maintain the things which they represent!  Yet, after all our boasting, there are many so-called freemen who are nothing better than slaves.  There are many who are totally ignorant of the highest, purest form of liberty.  The noblest liberty is that which is the property of the true Christian.  Those only are perfectly free people whom the Son of God ‘makes free.’  All else will sooner or later be found slaves.

Wherein does the liberty of true consist?  Of what is their freedom made up? They are freed from the guilt and consequences of sin by the blood of Christ.   Justified, pardoned, forgiven, they can look forward boldly to the day of judgement and cry ‘Who shally lay anything to our charge?  Who is he that condemneth?’ They are freed from the power of sin by the grace of Christ’s Spirit.  Sin has no longer dominion over them.  Renewed, converted, sanctified, they mortify and tread down sin, and are no longer led by captive by it.  Liberty, like this, is the portion of all true Christians in the day that they flee to Christ by faith, and commit their souls to Him.  That day they become free men.  Liberty, like this, is their portion for evermore.  Death cannot stop it.  The grace cannot even hold their bodies for more than a little season.  Those whom Christ makes free are free to all eternity.

Let us never rest till we have some personal experience of this freedom ourelves.  Without it all other freedom is a worthless privilege.  Free speech, free laws, political freedom, commercial freedom, national freedom, all these cannot smooth down a dying pillow, or disarm death of his his sting, or fill our conscience with peace.  Nothing can do that but the freedom which Christ alone bestores.  He give it freely to all who seek it humbly.  Then let us never rest till it is our own.” J.C. Ryle


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