Loving God. Loving our neighbor.

True and Lasting Freedom

Scotty Scotty Smith

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Gal. 5:1

Lord Jesus, it’s another 4th of July in the USA. As broken, divided, and conflicted as America is, we remain grateful for the privileges we enjoy as citizens. But the gratitude we feel for citizenship, in whatever country we call home, pales in comparison to the gratitude that comes from knowing we are citizens of heaven (Phil 3:20).

This is our truest citizenship and most defining identity—our consummate passport, lasting City, and eternal liberty. Thank you for making us members of the “chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession” (1 Pet. 2:9). Keep freeing us from all nationalism, tribalism, racism, and other “ism’s” that contradict the gospel and its claims.

Lord Jesus, the only people who are truly free are those you set free (John 8:36), How free are we? You took our guilt and gave us your righteousness. You have freed us from the demands of the Law and condemnation for our sin (Rom. 8:1); the fear of death (Heb. 2:15), and the power of shame (1 Jn.3:1-13).

Because the gospel is true, we pose, posture and pretend less. Why? Because we’re fully known and fully loved by you. We’re freer to own our sin and brokenness, and repent with joy and live with hope.

Our tiny fiefdoms of self-preoccupation, reputation-building, and personal glory are being toppled by the grace-riches of your Kingdom. You are freeing us to love others as you love us—forgiving and forbearing, encouraging and serving.

By the truth and power of the gospel, free us even more, Jesus. For surely, none of us are as free, joyful, and loving as you intend. So very Amen we pray, in your liberating and loving name.

True and Lasting Freedom