Issue #191

I remember the line from the movie Braveheart where Mel Gibson stands before his troops as they face the might of the English army and cries out, “They may take away our lives, but they will never take our freedom!” And with this, his Scottish rag tag army fought the battle of their lives. Freedom is ever so special. It is worth fighting for! Take it away and gloom and doom sets in and an attitude of hopelessness envelopes us. Being held captive takes away all liberties as you become subject to those who have locked you in captivity.

The loss of liberty or freedom can come about in many ways. Of course, you can be placed in incarceration for a crime you have committed. In all likelihood this will not be our experience. Yet, we can be held captive by the choices we make or the situations we place ourselves in. Addiction to alcohol and substances is one way. Addiction to the pursuit of wealth or success is another. Being unable to free oneself from the pull of temptation such as internet pornography or having the latest fashion item or gadget is yet another. Whatever it may be, I am of the opinion that our society today is largely anything but ‘free’! The demands we place on ourselves with work, family and the insatiable desire for more and more has made us captives, and freedom to enjoy the wonders of life elude us.

The great news is that we can be freed from all this when we have Jesus not only as Saviour of our lives but also Lord. It sounds crazy that we should submit ourselves to Jesus but when we do this, ironically, we find incredible freedom. He directs our life and we can live our lives in total harmony with how He has made us and what He has planned for us. He is the Master Craftsman and we are His creation. In our text today, we come face to face with a man who had been held captive by the demonic world. This world is very real and we would be naïve and ignorant to think that it doesn’t exist. This demon possessed man finds freedom when he encounters Jesus. His life is turned upside down and he finally finds peace and joy. All he wants to do is be with Jesus. Jesus loves giving freedom to the captive. No one is excluded such is the love of our Saviour Jesus!