“I have chosen the way of truth; I have set my heart on your laws … I run in the path of your commands, for you have set my heart free.” (Psalm 119:30 & 32, NIV)
In John 8:32, Jesus says, “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” For Jesus, there is a direct correlation between truth and freedom. Read the verses above and you will see that the Psalmist is making some connection. The immediate take-away from this idea is that living our lives based on truth is freeing, and living our lives based on lies is enslaving. We know this is true in our external physical world. I know the truths about what is good to eat to preserve a healthy body. I know that I could live contrary to those truths and would pay the consequences of those choices. Such poor choices would take me down a path where the consequences would (over time) enslave my health. Truth and freedom are tightly tied. Hence, one cannot have freedom if one doesn’t follow truth.
I think the same rings true in the spiritual, emotional, and psychological sides of our lives. Deep down we know that there are truths that would be good for us to follow and if we did, our lives would be freer. But too often, we make choices to follow the lies and find our lives enslaved in guilt, envy, anger, jealousy, etc. We know we ought to love freely, but we too quickly convince ourselves that it is too hard and we live as though love is conditional. We know we ought to give, but we quickly convince ourselves that the pie is only so big and if we give freely then we will have less. We know that holding grudges against others really only enslaves our lives, but we can’t seem to find the ability to set ourselves free in practicing forgiveness.
This battle between truth and lies, freedom and slavery, has been going on since the fall of Adam and Eve. They thought that following a lie would set them free and it only enslaved them. We would be lost in this struggle forever if it weren’t for our loving and redemptive God. He sent Jesus into the world to testify to the truth. He came to crush the effect of sin and lies in our lives. Believing in Jesus Christ is the only way to find the truth and the freedom our souls yearn for.
“If the Son sets you free, you are free indeed!” (John 8:36)