The board crashed down on Solomon’s back over and over and over again, shredding his skin and making his shirt a bloodied, torn rag.”Are you a slave?” his tormentor asked repeatedly, trying to break the spirit of this free black man who had been kidnapped and sold into slavery. Watching the movie, “12 Years a Slave,” I was again horrified at man’s cruelty to his fellow man…And at how some slave owners twisted scripture to keep their “property” in constant fear if they did not give in to any whim of the master’s, regardless how deviant or evil.
Jesus came to free us from slavery…
…slavery to our selfish desires and dreams;
…slavery to passions that distort what God has made beautiful;
…slavery to our self-consciousness and our desire to fit in;
…slavery to thinking we are more valuable than others rather than asking for Jesus’ mindset (“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus…” Philippians 3).
He freed us to live out His commitment to justice, mercy, love and grace.
…He honored women and raised their standing within society.
…He touched the leper, an untouchable, who had likely not had any physical contact for years. The man’s skin must have screamed for the sensation of a hand on his arm, a caress to his face. The leper was untouchable. But Jesus reached out and touched him, then healed him.
…He told slaves to honor their masters; He also instructed slave owners to treat their slaves with dignity.
…He healed rich and poor, highly or lowly placed.
Micah 6:8 states “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” God’s work in me is an ongoing process, not a one-time event. As I follow Him I too will be freed to treat others with justice and mercy, love and grace.
Where do you need to be freed? From what?