God gave us Passover to help us stay and get back on the right path if we get off. You can see as you read through the Old Testament, Israel constantly got on the wrong path and went after other gods. We do the same thing, it just doesn’t take the same form. And we can get just as religious as the Pharisees we always pick on. Some even become legalistic in their freedom by attributing legalism to others who are just walking in holiness. Some even use freedom to disregard reverence completely.
I start this post in this way because I want one thing clear as we go forward, look at yourself as you read this post. Don’t look at your friend, or that person at the church you don’t like. (By the way, go ahead and forgive that person, it’s the only way freedom will stick).
Here’s the hard truth about getting free and staying free, we make it harder than it has to be. James 4:7-8 MEV “Therefore submit yourselves to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double minded.”
Most of us when we face temptation, we tend not to go to God or resist the temptation, most of the time we yield to it fairly soon after it shows up. Temptation doesn’t come out of nowhere. James 1:14-15 MEV “But each man is tempted when he is drawn away by his own lust and enticed. Then, when lust has conceived, it brings forth sin; and when sin is finished, it brings forth death.” There is a process to temptation being acted on and becoming sin and that sin becoming long-term bondage. It all starts in the mind, which we addressed in the last post.
Each of the feasts are given to not only help us stay on track, but to continue moving forward and growing each year. Each month in the Hebrew has a specific purpose to it. God has each day, each week through Sabbath, each month through Rosh-Chodesh (the beginning of the month) and each year with its three feast times lined up for us to grow in Him and advance the Kingdom. These things are given to help us stay clear of the enemies traps.
James says, when we draw near to God that He draws near to us. Adam could have gone to God instead of hiding and there would have been a different outcome. The first step to freedom is running to God and not from Him. There is no formula or three-step program to bring any of us to that point. We have to choose to believe God’s love over the enemies fear.
As I was studying for this post the Holy Spirit took me off my course and said just give them James and tell them that you have made freedom too hard. If we are honest with ourselves, we know that it’s true. I think we try to come up with formulas and programs partly because we’ve bought the enemies lie that freedom can’t begin that easy. Notice I said begin, because changing the way we think and training ourselves to resist temptation does take work. Yet the work isn’t as hard as we make it out to be either. When we fully trust the love of God and yield to the help of the Holy Spirit, the enemy has no choice but to leave. Sure he may throw a fit and try to make his bondage seem big to us, but the truth is, he’s already defeated. We just have to enforce the victory.
Here is my encouragement to you; spend the next 21 days reading, studying and meditating on the book of James and the book of Ephesians. Learn who you are and your authority. Knowing those things is how you stay free. Resisting the enemy is easy, it starts with the choice of taking thoughts captive and it continues with speaking in line with the Word of God. These things are enforced by taking your authority over the enemy.
In the coming weeks we will look at who we are and our authority as well as the power of the Holy Spirit in us through receiving the baptism of the Spirit.
The Believers Authority: Kenneth E. Hagin
Reclaiming Our Forgotten Heritage: Curt Landry
A Time to Advance – Understanding the Hebrew Tribes and Months: Pierce & Heidler