The Deceptiveness of Illusory Freedom: The Chains that Bind
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Freedom of choice is an illusion as we are confined to the dictates of our will. As we desire, so then we choose but many either feign or presuppose a power to overrule even their own mental predisposition. How can that be so? As a reaction requires a stimilulus, the same with the phenomena known as choice. When I choose to eat either vanilla or chocolate ice cream, it is because I desired one more than the other not that I had the power of contrary choice.
The power of choice is not that which transcends the material with one notable exclusion that is in the matter of divine regeneration specifically in trusting the mechanisms by which the LORD of Glory ordained and determined men would believe a particular set of facts, truth, or doctrine through God-given means of faith and the successful accomplished redemption of their sins by the power of God alone. How do I know this? Because the Scriptures themself teach that these things are not revealed by flesh and blood but by the Father that has the power to draw men to Christ.
Matthew 16:17 KJVS
And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-jona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.
John 6:44 KJVS
No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
The gospel itself would not be a mystery if it were privy to common human reasoning or inquiry. To demonstrate this is not the case, I present the following:
Mark 4:11 KJVS
And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables:
1 Corinthians 2:6-16 KJVS
Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought:  But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom , which God ordained before the world unto our glory:  Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it , they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.  But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.  But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.  For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.  Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.  Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.  But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them , because they are spiritually discerned.  But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.  For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.
John 3:5-8 KJVS
Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.  That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.  Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.  The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
It is a secret whispered into the ears of the heart of flesh like a breeze of the wind. Therefore, it necessarily follows that man cannot possibly boast in their coming to Jesus as a result of their actions. Of course, I have not encountered one that would explicitly boast as if coming to Christ were something meritiorious but is in the subtext and evident in the manner of their "walk" and "talk" that I believe this may be noted.
I believe there are few things more deceptive than the illusion of freedom and the thought of being set free. Many may speak of governments impressing this idea upon the masses but it is rather a means of subjugation. One that believes they are already free are easier to control in other words. I believe the Great Deceiver operates under somewhat of the same premise. Note, the lie of old in Genesis 3:5.
Genesis 3:5 KJVS
For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
Many fail to realize they are yet under it's implications of this. They think they know the difference between good and evil and thus follow a laundry list of DOs and DON'Ts but these things will NEVER give them the righteousness that God will require on that day. There is some significance in what occurred after the fall. What happened to Adam and Eve after they ate of the fruit?
Genesis 3:7 KJVS
And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
They knew they were naked. Their shame was revealed before their very eyes. Yes, they did not possess the clothing of righteousness, His Holy Raiment, and they then committed to feeble attempts of covering themselves with fig leaves of all things. This is likened to the efforts of false religion to produce righteousness. It will never work. It will ALWAYS be a knock-off, a fake, a bootleg "righteousness" and unacceptable in the sight of God just like the offering of Cain from the earth/flesh and not of the Spirit in faith as was the lamb presented by Abel.
Later in Genesis 3, the LORD clothes Adam and Eve in coats of skins. Yet, another picture of the gospel. Perhaps, in literature, you would see this as a type of foreshadowing of what is to come. If you read the Old Testament, these manner of pictures occur quite frequently. It is a book that speaks in accord for God's eternal purposes in the glorification of His Only Begotten Son.
Adam and Eve knew their fig leaves were inadequate and they attempted to hide themselves as a result. I believe every Saint of God goes through this type of humbling that is the realization that their former religious strivings are but dung before a Holy God as the Apostle Paul expressed.
Philippians 3:8 KJVS
Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,
Another perhaps more graphic illustration was shared by the prophet Isaiah.
Isaiah 64:5-6 KJVS
Thou meetest him that rejoiceth and worketh righteousness, those that remember thee in thy ways: behold, thou art wroth; for we have sinned: in those is continuance, and we shall be saved.  But we are all as an unclean thing , and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
Filthy in this translation the Hebrew word עד defined in Strong's Concordance as:
From an unused root meaning to set a period (compare H5710 and H5749); the MENSTRUAL flux (as periodical); by implication (in plural) soiling: - filthy.
Ruminate on that thought for a moment. Remember, Christ's death on the cross was a pinnacle of His obedience, of His righteousness. What could anything else look like compared to that? Not good that's what.
Philippians 2:8 KJVS
And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
Still yet, many remain in the cesspool of their own self-righteous filth. They boast of their faithfulness to God but are inwardly corrupt but do not even know it. They place themselves under the crippling and deadly yoke of the law not understanding the law's true purpose. It's functions as a schoolmaster showing us our iniquity.
Galatians 3:24-25 KJVS
Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.  But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.
Thereafter, being children of God, we operate under a different principle: Walking by faith. No longer out of legal fear or pursuing morality as mercenaries seeking a reward but out of love and thankfulness. No, if we be born again, we have our reward obtained by Christ alone. Immortality of whom He alone possesses conferring it to who He will.
2 Corinthians 5:7 KJVS
(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)
1 Timothy 6:16 KJVS
Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen.
Finally, I will leave you with one last Scripture for your consideration. This one shows that man is either a servant or slave to sin or to righteousness (of Christ).
Romans 6:20-23 KJVS
For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness.  What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death.  But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.  For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Who do you serve on this day? Is it the fig-leaf devil of self-righteous false religion or has God submitted you to His righteousness to the glory of His Only Begotten Son? I pray that the chains be loosed in Jesus' name. Amen.