Soon after Jesus began his ministry, he spoke these words in the local synagogue.18 “The Spirit of the Lordis upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, 19 and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.” Luke 4:18-19
Throughout the world there is a great battle that is being waged between the forces of God against the forces of evil. The enemy satan works to capture people, keep them in darkness and to blind them to the good things God has for them. The enemy will use many different tactics and schemes against people to distract and destroy them. Like a good fisherman the enemy uses bait he knows has worked in the past. Bait that looks good, but when we bite into it moves us away from God. Each person has their own weakness and the enemy uses that weakness as he prepares your bait. For some it could be pornography, gambling, alcohol, or greed. For others it could be recreation that keeps us away from God. Sometimes when we are doing things that are not immoral, we don’t realize that could be a trap.
In the midst of this battle Jesus comes to set us free. The Lord opens our eyes to the enemy tactics and how he is working to destroy me and those around me. I may be blinded to my sin, but the Lord breaks through and shows me my folly. I may be spending my time on good things, but when those good things draw me away from the Lord, they can become an idol. Like any lure they look good until I get hooked. When God opens my blind eyes, I begin to see the tactic satan is using on me.
When Jesus was on the cross, he was crucified with two thieves. One thief was on his right and the other on his left. As they hung their next to Jesus at the beginning both heaped insults on Jesus. Later in the day something changed in the heart of one thief. God in his mercy set him free. He was still going to die that day, but instead of heading to hell he was going to heaven. The Lord set him free.
39 One of the criminals hanging beside him scoffed, “So you’re the Messiah, are you? Prove it by saving yourself—and us, too, while you’re at it!” 40 But the other criminal protested, “Don’t you fear God even when you have been sentenced to die? 41 We deserve to die for our crimes, but this man hasn’t done anything wrong.” 42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” 43 And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.” Luke 23:39-43
What about you? Do you need to be set free of something today? Don’t wait! Call on the Lord in prayer because He came to set you free. Free from unbelief. To free you from sin that entangles you. To free you from distractions that lure you away from God and to open our eyes to your need for Him. Praise the Lord who came to set you free!
In the story of Jonah, God also worked to set people free. To hear more of the story of Jonah click here: https://podpoint.com/light-of-christ-church-podcast/series/journey-with-jonah-1/jonahs-anger
For more teaching on Jonah check these podcasts out: