Welcome to the In Touch Podcast with Charles Stanley for Tuesday, June 7th. Let's continue the series on the book of Galatians, learning how Christ died to free you from every form of bondage. It would be great to say that when Jesus Christ went to the cross, He took care of all of men's bondage, but I want to tell you something. No book in the Bible could be more applicable than the book of Galatians to the bondage in which we are in. And as we go through these chapters, you're going to discover some things. You're going to discover that you are in bondage to things that if anybody else had told you, you'd say, no way.
That's why the Spirit of God must do the convicting. And you see, once God begins to free you in your spirit, in your attitude about yourself, in your attitude about other people, in your attitude toward God, in your attitude about what you think He expects of you, in your attitude of what you expect for yourself, you're going to see something really begin to happen in your life. So would you just do yourself a big favor as we go through this? As you prayed today, would you ask the Lord, Lord, show me if there's an area of my life in bondage. Show me if my thinking has me bound in some way.
And I believe as you do that, you'll find out that there may be something there that you've never thought about. So let's look at these first three verses, and then I want to deal with the fourth verse primarily here. So he begins by saying, Paul, one who is sent by the ambassador of ambassadors, who bears the credentials of the Son of God himself. And notice what he said, an apostle, not of men. He said, men didn't make me an apostle, neither by man, I'm not going in the behalf of men.
He says, but by Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead, which is his way of putting emphasis to who he is. He says, I'm an apostle of Jesus Christ. He said, I shared my faith with you on those missionary journeys. He said, I was sent by Jesus Christ.
I gave you the message of Jesus Christ. And he says, what I'm writing in this letter is the message of Jesus Christ to you. So verse four is the key. Look, he says, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world according to the will of God and our Father.
Now let's look at that verse a moment. He says that he gave what? Himself, Jesus Christ voluntarily. The Bible says that God so loved the world, what did he do? He sent his only begotten Son. And he's saying of Jesus that Jesus voluntarily gave himself, that is he voluntarily came to lay down his life and suffered the sacrificial death on the tree, on the cross, the atoning death in order that he may do something for us. And in essence, what he's saying is that he may deliver us, liberate us, free us, break the bonds, take away the bondage, open the doors of the prison so that you and I could become what God wants us to be.
And look how he said it. He said he gave himself once and for all for our sins. He says he gave himself for our sins.
Now let me ask you a question. If you are still bearing any sin once you've been saved, what you are saying is that what Jesus Christ did to the cross was inadequate for you. He says he gave himself voluntarily for the personal sin of everybody who's ever lived and ever will live. He gave himself for our sins. Listen, didn't say he gave himself to make you better.
He didn't give himself to make you happy. He gave himself what happened at Gogotha was that Jesus Christ voluntarily laid down himself and he paid the penalty for all of your sin, past, present, future. Now listen, if he didn't, I'm not free. If all sin wasn't nailed to the cross, I'm not free.
If he just took care of my past, what about my present? Listen, no man is free if he's bearing sin. He said he came to do what? To lay down his life, to suffer sacrificially vicariously for your sin and my sin that we may be freed from its penalty and its power in our life. And no man who does not understand or who has not accepted the total pardon and the complete freedom that Jesus Christ gives, he's not free. Some of you sitting right here, you're not free because you keep condemning yourself of the past and as long as you look back in the past and say, oh, I know that God's forgiven me, but listen, if he nailed it to the tree, what are you doing handling it? If he has forgiven you, what are you doing bringing it up again?
He says he laid down his life. Listen, there's nothing you can do to make your old self any better. How many of you are better than you used to be 10 years ago? There was a time in my life when I looked at my life and I thought, now, Lord, I don't really have much going for me, so, and this is the honest truth. I said, Lord, I don't really have much going for me, so I really want to give you everything I can give you and I want you to have something that you can really use. So I decided how I would improve different areas of my life.
Man, I mean, I set goals, I know all about goals. I set goals and I worked at this and I had this going and that going and all these things and I was improving my knowledge over here and my experience over here and all of these things going. And you know, after years of that, when I came to the realization that all of my self-improvement was only getting me deeper and deeper and deeper into bondage because I was still failing or I was improving a lot of things on the surface, but old Charles Stanley was still the same.
I mean, he hadn't changed a bit. My life was like an old beat-up car. You get this part, this part fixed, and the other part breaks down.
And you take care of that and something else breaks down, same old thing over, because you see, you can't improve yourself. He says, He came to liberate you, free you, the liberty which we have in Christ Jesus. And he says, the first step to your freedom, listen, the first step to your freedom is the price Jesus Christ paid at Calvary.
He died for your sins. That means you don't have to accept any more chains, any more shackles, and any more bondage according to God's Word. Now listen, He says that He might deliver us, that means to pluck us out. Listen, that He might deliver us again, Aristotle says. He's taking us out once and for all, saved one time because Jesus died one time, one atonement, one deliverance, to pluck us out of this present evil world.
Now let me tell you what that means. That doesn't mean that He came to save us and just take us on home to heaven and get us out of our environment. But the believer who lives, he says we're to live in the world but we're not to be what?
Of the world. That is, we're not to take on the character of the world. This whole world's not going to improve because it is run by one who hates God and who has every one of us on his hit list.
That's the devil. How do you think he's going to improve this world? He's not going to improve the world. I'll tell you what he's going to do, he's going to trick a lot of folks. Because there will be enough social, scientific, mechanical, physical improvements that people say, man, things are getting better.
What things? And until spiritual things are better, it's going to get worse. So the world's going to get worse and worse and worse. We know that ultimately from God's point of view, we have already been taken out because He says our names have been written in the Lamb's Book of Life. He says we have a new citizenship. We are just simply passing through. We are pilgrims down here. And He says He's simply given us a little foresight into what we're going to have. He says Jesus has gone to prepare a place for us.
We're just down here temporarily. But I want to tell you something, if you allowed the world to clothe you in its attitude, clothe you in its habits, clothe you in its actions, my friends, you're giving a very poor witness of what Jesus Christ is like. Because He said, listen, He came and gave Himself vicariously and sacrificially for you in your place on the cross to save you from your sins. And He says to deliver you, pluck you out, rescue you, liberate you, free you from this present evil world. That means that the power and the influence and the magnetism of this world, you can stand and face it and say, so sorry, I don't care for any of that.
Living in it but freed from it. And one of these days our feet are going to lift off this ground and, brother, that's it. It's all glory from Thy all the way up and all the way out. He's come to deliver us, which is His first action of freedom. That is to deal with your sins. Listen now, watch this. Deal with your sins at the cross.
Deal with your life. Seated the Father's right hand through the power of the Holy Spirit right here. He didn't leave us down here in this present evil world. He says, I've come to deliver you from it.
How's He going to do that? Well, He took care of my sins at the cross but only as He lives within me through the power of the Holy Spirit is He daily delivering you and me from the power, from the character, from the imprint, from the magnetism of this present evil age that is anti-God, anti-Christ, anti-everything that is holy. And, friend, we have to keep our heart right lest this whole world keep blowing its own soot on us all the time because everywhere we go we live. Listen, amidst this He says, I've come to deliver you from the power of sin in your life, the penalty of sin in your life. He says, I've done that. And He says, I've come to deliver you from this present evil world. And He says, I'm going to tell you why I've come to do that because He says it's the will of God my Father.
Look at that fourth verse. He says, according to the will of God our Father. Look, if you will, in 1 Timothy chapter 2 for just a moment. 1 Timothy chapter 2 and verse 6. Look how many times through these books here, just three or four verses here, He says the same thing. Look in verse 5 first.
Go back to verse 4, it's beautiful. Who will have all men to be saved? He's died for all men's sins and to come into the knowledge of the truth for there is one God, one mediator between God and man, the man Jesus Christ. Who did what? Gave Himself a ransom. Brother, He paid the price for you.
Let me ask you a question. The next time you get tempted to disobey God, what I want you to do is just to think about the cross and realize that Jesus went there to save you from what you're about to do. And what you're about to do is to get on you the taint of the world which does not belong to you. That is foreign to God's people. Sin is foreign to saints.
Now the problem is we've taken it in so much we say, well, I'm sort of part of the family. God hates it because of what it'll do to you. Look, if you will, in Titus. Move on over to Titus chapter 2 and there's a little verse here in verse 14. He says that Jesus Christ gave Himself for us that He may redeem us from what? All iniquity and then, listen, He didn't just go to the cross, take care of my sins, but He says, and what? Purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. The cross took care of my sin.
His life takes care of my life here and now. All right, look, if you will, in Ephesians chapter 5. Go back to Ephesians for a moment.
Look in chapter 5. So many wonderful verses about this in the book of Ephesians, but He says in verse 2, and walk in love as Christ also hath loved us and hath, aris tense, given Himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling Savior. You see, He died that you wouldn't have to deal with sin in that way anymore, taking care of your sin. And He says, back to Galatians now, He says He did that according to the will of the Father.
And if you'll notice, look, if you will, in Ephesians chapter 1, He says in verse 5, having predestinated us under the adoption of children by Jesus Christ unto Himself, according to the what? The good pleasure of His will. He did it because it's His will to do it.
And you see, now watch this because it's very important for us to break out of our bondage. He says that He saved us according to the good pleasure of His will. Look in verse 9, having made known unto us the mystery of His will according to the good pleasure which He purposed in Himself. Verse 12, that we should be to the praise of His glory. Why do you think God sent the Lord Jesus Christ to die for your sins and my sins and to free us, living in the world but free from it?
We don't have to be a part of it. We can live wholly before God because He's living in us. Why do you think He did? He says it's His will to do it. Now listen, watch this. He didn't say you had to live up to anything.
He says, back to Galatians chapter 1, look in verse 4, who gave Himself for our sins that He might deliver us from this present evil world according to the will of God our Father, not and if we live up to certain standards. And what I want you to see is this. You are free tonight. You have been freed. Your chains have been broken.
The shackles have been taken off. You've been liberated and freed and God wants you to know your position in Him is freedom and liberty and joy and contentment and peace in Christ Jesus. And the key is verse 20 when He says, Christ liveth within me. Christ liveth within me. Christ liveth within me. It is Christ living within me that has freed me from the bondage and shackles of sin.
Now let me tell you something. Before we finish this series, if you'll read this book and you let God plant and water and cultivate and take care of that one thought in your life, I guarantee you my friend, you won't be the same person. You're going to be walking in the light of step. You're going to feel some freedom in your life that you've never felt. You're not going to be concerned about what people think. You're not going to be trying to reach up and match up to some expectation. You're not going to be condemned with self-condemnation.
You're not going to be loaded with guilt. God's going to free you to be the happy, joyful, liberated person. You're going to feel like that eagle He says that soars and soars the mighty wings of an eagle that can take him higher than the mountain peaks, down the tip of his wing in the touch of the water, up again.
What is he doing? He's a free bird. Take a rope and wrap it around his wings.
He's still an eagle. He still has the potential, but he can't fly because he's in bondage. I want to tell you something. Some of you are going to fly. Amen?
How many of you would like to really fly? Praise the Lord. Some of you are not quite sure. Well, He'll show you that in due time, due season. Look, if you will, one more passage in Philippians chapter 2. Look what it says about Jesus. He says in verse 5, Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus, who being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God, but he made of himself no reputation, humbled himself, took upon himself the form of a servant to serve others, and was made in the likeness of man. And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross, in order that your sins may be pardoned and your life may be freed. And freedom begins, first of all, with dealing with your sin, which simply means all freedom begins the moment I'm willing to say, Lord Jesus, I confess that I'm a sinner.
I've sinned against you and violated your law. I'm accepting by faith what you said, that you came and you voluntarily gave your life at the cross for my sins, and that you may deliver me from the shackles and the bondage and the magnetism and the power of this old present evil world. And by faith I'm surrendering my life to you, and I'm receiving you, Lord Jesus, as my Savior. Your death is adequate payment for my sin, and accepting the presence of the Holy Spirit is your seal in my life. The moment you do that, my friend, God says every lock Satan's put on your life has been unlocked, every chain has been broken, every rope has been cut, all the prison doors of your life are flung open, and you have become a free person. The witness of the Word of God is that every single person who receives Jesus Christ as Savior is liberated by the grace of God. And then as we understand what that liberty means, we can begin to soar and become the person God wants us to be. Thank you for listening to Part 2 of A Declaration of Freedom. If you'd like to know more about Charles Stanley or In Touch Ministries, stop by InTouch.org. This podcast is a presentation of In Touch Ministries, Atlanta, Georgia.
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