From the Pulpit: It’s all about freedom

Luke 23:33 “…and when they were come to the place called Calvary, there they crucified him and the malefactors, one on the right and one on the left.” Jn. 19:28-30; “After this, Jesus knowing that the scripture might be fulfilled said, I thirst. Now there was set a vessal full of vinegar: and they filled a sponge with vinegar and put upon it hyssop, and put it to his mouth. When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, “It is finished.” He bowed his head and gave up his spirit.”

The word “tetelestia,” meaning paid in full.

Jesus was sent to seek and save the lost (Mt. 18:11); as well to reconcile sinful man to a holy God, (II Cor. 5:18-19); “…all of this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them.”

Also completed were all of the Old Testament prophecies, symbols and foreshadowings of the coming Messiah. From Genesis to Malachi over 300 prophecies are given detailing his arrival.

Since the price for our sins had been paid by the blood of Christ, we had been set free from the bondage of sin. We have been given independence from Satan only to realize we become dependent on Jesus. Acts 4:12 “Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”

This past weekend has been about picnics and parades with some regard to the meaning of “Independence Day.” On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was adopted declaring our independence from Great Britain.

We must never forget our country’s history. Likewise, never forget that over 2,000 years ago, on a hill far away, stood an old, rugged cross, the emblem of suffering and shame.

When Jesus said “tetelestia,” paid in full we can all rejoice in our independence from Satan and honor our dependence on Jesus. Celebrate every day the freedoms we enjoy in this country and also the freedom we have in Christ.

Ps. 118:24: “This is the day which the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.”

(“From the Pulpit” is a weekly sermon provided by the clergy members of The Weirton Ministerial Association)