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Freedom Costs Everything

I may have said it before, but I’m quite appalled by how many people say they have never known prosperity when the poorest of us (at least in the US) live better than most of the world. We’re so spoiled that we label things, such as having a phone, as a basic human right. Most of what we call “rights” are privileges we’re used to having and take for granted the cost of them. We demand free everything without considering the cost and where it will come from, not taking in to consideration that “free” means removing from the livelihood, not of “the man,” but of the workers, the laborers, and those whom, supposedly, we’re trying to rescue by demanding free. Nothing is free. Everything costs something, and we’re prone to take things for granted as “rights,” that someone paid for, especially the freedoms we enjoy in the US. Those rights were bought and paid for with the blood of soldiers. They weren’t free. Someone paid for them. In the same way, our freedoms in Christ were paid for by His rights, and are confirmed the world over by the blood of Martyrs, from the beginning of the Church to the reading of this devotion. Nothing is free.

Jesus Christ did nothing wrong; in His humanity, He lived perfectly before God, obedient in every way, tempted in every way and He did not sin, and suffering in His temptations (Philippians 2 and Hebrews 2 and 4 say much on this). Yet He was tried in a false court and executed among criminals. On the Cross, Scripture says, He became sin, and His body was slain, putting Sin to death. How often do we take this for granted? How often have I demanded my “rights” before God almighty when I put Jesus on the cross? I deserve and am owed nothing. Jesus paid it all, and so I owe all to Him. He is the reason I am free, and that freedom costs everything. May I never take it for granted again.

Romans 3:9-21

What then? Are we Jews any better off? No, not at all. For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, as it is written:

“None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.” “Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.” “The venom of asps is under their lips.” “Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.” “Their feet are swift to shed blood; in their paths are ruin and misery, and the way of peace they have not known.” “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

Now we know that whatever the law says it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be stopped, and the whole world may be held accountable to God. For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.

But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it—the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

Then what becomes of our boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? By a law of works? No, but by the law of faith. For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from works of the law. Or is God the God of Jews only? Is he not the God of Gentiles also? Yes, of Gentiles also, since God is one—who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through faith. Do we then overthrow the law by this faith? By no means! On the contrary, we uphold the law.

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