Happy 4th of July! This week we celebrate the 237th anniversary of the independence of these United States of America. Our independence from foreign rule has brought us great freedom and liberty. As Christians, may we take this day as an opportunity to celebrate our spiritual freedom from the rule of the god of this age, who continues to blind so many around us, keeping them from the Light of the Gospel. May we be reminded today that our liberty is found in Christ, who said, “If the Son makes you free, you shall free indeed.” However, just as the British returned in 1812 to reclaim their sovereignty over the colonies which declared themselves a free nation, so in our Christian experience, the old man, our fleshly nature, revives to recapture territory which once belonged to the devil. Beware the wiles of the enemy, as he tempts you with the pleasures of this world, or the pride of your flesh.

While freedom is found in independence in the world, freedom is only experienced in complete and simple dependence upon Jesus in the Kingdom of God. We are not to be those who put any confidence whatsoever in our flesh, as Paul says in Philippians, but we are to be those who “worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in Jesus Christ, and have no confidence in the flesh!" Christians find liberty in DEPENDENCE ON JESUS, rather than by independence from Him. Our freedom is in Christ, and our liberty is only as secure as our dependence upon Him is strong. The more we trust Him and look up to Him, the closer we walk with Him and depend upon Him, the more we will we become like Him. More loving. More humble. More gracious. More peaceable. More spiritual. More Christian.

Today, celebrate true Freedom and real Liberty, as we learn to live in dependence upon our Good and Gracious Shepherd. Happy Dependence Day!