Bondage

<<oppression, captivity>>

Anything that hinders our relationship with God, harms our personal testimony and limits how He can use us is a form of bondage. The Bible states, “An evil man is snared by his own sin” (Prov 29:6). Acts of sin, destructive habits and addictions quickly trap people, developing into strongholds having enormous power and control. They also result in damaging emotional hurts, negative attitudes, a lack of forgiveness and wrong soul ties. Cultural beliefs and practices that ignore or belittle God can also have long tenacious roots built up over generations.

Christ died to purchase our freedom, “If the Son sets you free you will be truly free” (Jn 8:32,36, 14:6; 1 Jn 3:8). This freedom is not to ‘do as we like’ but to generously share Christ with others seeking their freedom also (Rom 8:15; 1 Cor 9:19; 2 Cor 3:17; Gal 5:13; 1 Pet 2:16).  The Bible warns us not to let anybody bring us into the bondage of their customs but to live in the freedom Christ died to gain for us (1 Cor 7:23; Gal 2:4).  As “A person is a slave to whatever has mastered them”, what habits, issues or things control me? (2 Pet 2:19).

We are no longer slaves but freed through Jesus so don’t become entangled again with Satan. Get rid of the old wrong lifestyle, the emotional baggage of the past and whatever holds you back from total devotion to God because if we refuse to deal with what is not acceptable to God it will become our downfall (Num 33:50-56; Gal 4:3,7-9,30, 5:1). To be

Live in the freedom that Christ has                      provided – Galatians 5:1 

set free there must come a renewing of the mind coupled with a determined effort, co-operating with the Holy Spirit. This includes  putting on the spiritual armour and standing strong ‘in Jesus’, obeying His directions, while dealing with unconfessed sin and unresolved issues in order to overthrow the tactics and crippling ways the enemy has established in our lives (Rom 12:2; 2 Cor 10:4,5; Eph 6:10-18; Jas 4:7).

Practically, the Bible’s advice is “Consider the path of your feet” (Prov 4:26). This means regularly reviewing our thought patterns, attitudes, actions and leisure time activities to see if they are wholesome or questionable. Even worthwhile pastimes can become a negative influence or curse if they take the place God should have in our life or detract from our other responsibilities. Focus on God’s power to overcome your weaknesses instead of reflecting on the power of sin (1 Jn 4:4).  Are there areas in my life that the Holy Spirit is convicting me I must deal with?

When Lazarus was brought back to life, he had to be set free of the trappings of death that restricted him so he could live a normal life (Jn 11:43,44). Do you want to live unhindered, without the restraint of unhealthy bondages, and, from that position of wholeness and freedom, minister to others and set them free of the oppression and baggage that is plaguing them?

Through wrong thoughts, words and actions we can put ourselves in bondage, bringing about self-fulfilling predictions resulting in reduced relationships and stifled effectiveness (Job 22:28; Ps 9:16; Prov 6:2, 18:7, 23:7). In contrast, by filling our minds with the good and positive things in life along with the special blessings we have in Christ our outlook will be enhanced and this will help us to ‘walk’ into freedom (Phil 4:8). If you are trapped by what you have said or done, humbly go and make amends to set yourself free (Prov 6:1-5).

“Through a knowledge of the truth, come to your senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who takes people captive to do his will” (2Tim 2:25,26). The choice is ours – will we let the devil keep us restricted or separated from the abundant life in Christ, or will we rise up in Jesus’ name, released into what He purchased for us at Calvary, living within His boundaries and accomplishing His will for our lives (Jn 10:10). The Holy Spirit releases us from the bondage of fear into a whole new dimension of “power, love and self-discipline” (Rom 8:15; 2 Tim 1:7).

See also: baggage, blockage, bound, burdens, culture, deliverance, freedom, habits, hurts, oppressed, past, peer pressure, slave, soul ties, thinking/thoughts, un-forgiveness.

 


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