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Return to the Garden

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.-Galatians 5:1 I think sometimes we can get mixed up in our walk with Jesus. Many of us take freedom in Christ for granted, and many others become rule followers as opposed to humanity unhindered by the chains that doomed us to begin with. So what do we need to do? What do we need to look for? Perhaps we need to go back to the beginning. Consider, if you will, the Garden of Eden. Humanity was unhindered. There were no "have to do" lists, God walked with Adam and Eve, and they were naked and unashamed-unhindered in their relationship to God and one another. There was but one stipulation: Allow God to define Good and Evil, or disobey, and define good and evil for one's self, and, thus, die. Adam and Eve walked with God and one another, they were free! But then they cast the burden on themselves and ate of the fruit they were forbidden, and life became cursed, about the rules, and the destiny of humanity in its rebellion against its creator to die. God, though, desires us to get back to the Garden. The images throughout Scripture point us back to this! The tabernacle and temple were strewn with images of the garden, where heaven and earth met. The Prophets spoke of the day when God would, again be in the midst of his people, and never be away from them again, and Revelation tells of a city in the midst of the Garden where God shall be with His children always. Jesus came to set us free! He came to restore us to that unashamed walk with God and with one another. We who are in Christ have died to the law, not free to continue in the rebellion that destroyed us, but to walk in the newness of life, the law of love and liberty from the chains of sin and death. We, unlike our ancestors, have to let God define good and evil, as He did in the beginning, and walk by His definitions, with the Holy Spirit dwelling inside of us, pointing us toward the future where we see God face to face forever. Let's return to the Garden, let's submit to God's definitions of what is good and what is not, and let us walk in freedom and newness of life. John 8: 31-38 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” 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’?”

Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. I know that you are offspring of Abraham; yet you seek to kill me because my word finds no place in you. I speak of what I have seen with my Father, and you do what you have heard from your father.”

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