Today, let’s address a pivotal question most people have as they are struggling to get free, and it’s simply this. Why is it taking so long?
Often, as Christians, it can be easy to fall prey to the idea that freedom is something that happens to us. We commonly use phrases like “I just need God to set me free” or other language along those same lines—but there is a problem with this kind of thinking. It assumes that we are waiting on God to do something that He seems unwilling to do. Do we really believe that God is the one withholding freedom from us? If that is the case, is God then responsible for our continued sin?
This is certainly not true!
In fact, when Paul writes in the book of Romans about being set free from sin, he does not point to a thing God will do for us in the future. He speaks of freedom as something that has already been accomplished by Christ on our behalf.
In chapter 6, he writes:
“We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. And since we died with Christ, we know we will also live with him.” (Romans 6:6–8, ESV)
When you received Jesus as Lord and put your faith in Him, you were united with Him in His death, your old sinful nature was crucified with Him, and you were raised from the dead into newness of life. He has already set you free.
We see another truth in 2 Peter chapter 1 that takes this idea even farther:
“May God give you more and more grace and peace as you grow in your knowledge of God and Jesus our Lord. By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence. And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.” (2 Peter 1:2–4, NLT, emphasis added)
In other words, it’s time to stop acting like you are waiting on God to set you free and give you what you need to live differently. That won’t get you anywhere fast. Why? Because He already has. The prison cell is unlocked. Now it’s time to do your part and walk out of it.
Freedom from sin is not something God does for you as you sit passively by. It requires your participation. Think of it like a check. God has written it, signed it, and given it to you—but it does no good for you unless you take it to the bank and cash it or deposit it. It takes an act of your will—of your surrender—in order to partake in the benefits of what Christ has accomplished on your behalf. At the end of the day, God has set you free. He’s equipped you with grace, which is His divine power. Now, the choice is up to you as to whether or not you will choose to live in that freedom.
Day 15 Freedom Work
Scripture Reading — Read Galatians 5–6 and 2 Peter 1, taking careful notes about how God equips us to live free.
Journaling Exercises — Answer the following questions at length in your journal. Aim to write for about 5-7 minutes per question:
- Have you seen getting set free as something you are waiting on God to do for you, or as something that He has already done? What role does God give you in the journey of walking in freedom?
- What does 2 Peter 1 have to say about how God equips us to overcome sin? What has He already given to us through Christ that enables us to live free?
- If God has already set you free, what is required from you in order to step into that freedom? Have you taken responsibility to do your part and to participate with God in your freedom, or have you placed all of the responsibility on God? How would you pray differently if you saw freedom as something that is no longer something you are waiting on God to do for you, but with you?
Prayer — Father, I thank you that because of what Jesus accomplished on the cross, I am no longer a slave to sin. Thank you that when I received Jesus as my Lord and Savior, I was set free from the power of sin. Help me to understand what I need to do in order to step into that freedom. I realize that I have a role to play. Help me to learn what it means to walk by the Spirit so I do not gratify the desires of the sinful nature, but instead, live according to the new nature you have given me—the very nature of Christ. Amen.