Monday, July 5, 2021

In Freedom and Truth - John 8:32-36

 In Freedom and Truth - John 8:32-36

Power Point Link

Video Link
Word Doc Link

Introduction: Let me read to you the Preamble to the Declaration of Independence. Which is what we celebrate on the 4th of July, our forefathers declaring our independence from the King of England and the yoke that bound us to the nation of England.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed, by their Creator, with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

You’ll notice that in the Preamble freedom is joined with “these truths.” “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed, by their Creator, with certain unalienable Rights.” To our founding fathers, freedom was based upon the truth that all men are created equal and given undeniable, unchangeable, unalienable rights by their Creator. These truths are what their national freedom would be built upon. What our national freedom is built upon.

And it is that fundamental, foundational relation between truth and freedom that we are going to explore today as Jesus taught it in John 8. Verse 32 is our key verse and one of the most well know and oft misused passages of scripture.

Freedom’s Foundation - John 8:32-33

And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

Knowing The Truth

Background. This passage is called the Sermon in the Temple and it takes place during the Feast of the Tabernacles (John 7:2, 8:2). The Feast of the Tabernacles was celebrated by the Jewish people coming to Jerusalem and have a national campout. They constructed little booths of palm branches and boards, they arbors to remember and celebrate their freedom from Egypt during the Exodus. In those day they lived for forty years in tents in the wilderness (Leviticus 23:43) and the feast of tabernacles, tents was a time to thank God for their freedom.

During this celebration, they would hold their identity as a nation uppermost in their minds and hearts. They would be especially conscious of their oppression under the Roman overlords during this time and the desire to be free as a people and nation would be very strong at this time.  

In the midst of all this Jesus stood in the temple area, the center of all the events taking place in Jerusalem and He gives this sermon about freedom, but a freedom that had to be built on truth.
Jesus says, Ye shall know the truth

Know is from the Greek word ginosko (ghin-oce'-ko), It meant to learn, to know, to come to know, get a knowledge of perceive, feel, experience.

Now to the Greeks, this meant to know facts, but these facts may or may not affect one's conduct. But to the Jewish people and especially to Jesus in this sermon, true knowledge always manifested itself in one's conduct. One did not know something until that fact had a practical outworking in his life.
So Jesus says know the truth. Knowing this truth would free them, change them but what was the truth Jesus spoke of?

Look back in the context of the verse at chapter 8.

 John 8:12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

John 8:21 Then said Jesus again unto them, I go my way, and ye shall seek me, and shall die in your sins: whither I go, ye cannot come. 23 And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world. 24 I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.

John 8:28  Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.
The truth, Jesus spoke of was a spiritual truth and it was centered on Himself. The truth was that Jesus was the light of the world.
The truth was that those where were listening to him were dying in sin. The truth was that Jesus was not of this world. The truth was that if they did not believe that Jesus was the I AM then they would die in sin. The truth was that Jesus would be lifted up, crucified by the very people he came to save. But when that happened then they would know the truth that Jesus was who he said he was and send by the Heavenly Father.

The truth, that brought their freedom, was faith in Jesus Christ and His sacrificial death for their sins. No other truth could bring the freedom they most desperately needed, not freedom from Roman, but freedom from sin, freedom from death and freedom from eternal punishment of Hell.

The Maxim We Must Understand.

True freedom is only possible when it is based on the truth. Freedom is only as strong as the truth it is founded on. This is a universal reality. we will talk about it today in terms of spiritual truth, but it is the same with all freedom. If it is not built on truth, then it is not freedom.

Many people today believe that freedom means no rules, no laws. no restrictions on anything they might want to be or do. They believe that sin is actually freedom or that anarchy is liberty. They want to be free from morality, free from the law, free from facts, free from family, free from biology, free from gender. What they think is freedom is actually slavery because there is no truth in what they believe and if there is no truth then there can be no freedom.

Illustration: The Lie In The Garden

What they believe is a lie. A tortured, dangerous, destructive lie that goes all the way back to the first false promise of freedom given by Satan in the Garden.

Genesis 3:1–5 1 And he (the Serpent, Satan) said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? 2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: 3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. 4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 5 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.

Transition:  If truth is freedom than what is slavery?  Jesus tells us in verse 33-35

Freedom’s Choice - John 8:31-35

Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed. And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. They answered him, We be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free? Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: [but] the Son abideth ever.

The Slavery of Sin

Vs. 31 is an interesting verse. Jesus says to those Jews which believed on him. If you continue in my word, then are you truly my disciples. His statement is both a test of salvation and a challenge to discipleship.

These “believing Jews” were not believers in the true sense of the word anymore than they were free. These particular Jews, the ones in context here in John 8 believed some of what Jesus said but they did not believe all of what He said, or all of who he was. They like the thousands of followers in John 6 believed this was the Messiah, the Savior of their nation but they did not believe that He was the savior of their souls. They believed He was the Prophet that Moses promised would come, but they did not believe what He prophesied about their sin. They believed he was the son of David, but they did not, could not, would not believe that He was the Son of God.

They did not believe in him and then lose their faith, they had never fully put their faith in who he told them He was. They believed in their understanding, their truth and that could not and did not stand longer than a few moments.

When Jesus tells them He will free them, they don’t believe they were needed to be freed. They were not in bondage to any man. In fact, they had been in bondage to the Assyrians, the Babylonians, The Persians, The Greeks and now they were bound by their Roman masters. They could not see their physical bondage and they willfully refused to see their spiritual bondage.

Jesus proves their slavery in vs. 34, “Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.” Their sin was open and apparent because in vs. 37 he tells them, “Ye seek to kill me.”

They had the choice right there before them, standing in the Temple grounds, listening to Jesus. They could choose Him and the truth or they could reject Him and choose sin. If they chose Jesus they would be free or they could choose to remain the slaves of sin and death. Vs. 34 “Whosoever commits (practices, continues in) sin is the slave of sin.”

They claim to be free because they are the descendants of Abraham, but Jesus says that is not enough, they must be set free by the Son of God. They must have His word, His truth in them. Without His truth they would never be truly free.

Slavery Or Salvation?  

This choice is not limited to the Jews of Jesus time but it is a choice every person who comes of age must make. Will you choose slavery or salvation, sin or the Savior?

Look at Romans 6:16-17 in comparison to what we read in John 8.
Romans   6:16  Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey, whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? 17 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered  you. 18 Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.
Paul says the key to freedom is understanding, knowing, believing that you can choose which master you will serve.

If you yield to sin, as these in John 8 did, then you became a slave to sin.

But if you yield to the doctrine, the truth, the word of God, that was given to you, then you become a servant of righteousness.
You can choose, in fact you must choose and all eternity rests upon that choice. Whose servant will you be? One choice binds you in the chains of sin and hell for eternity and one choice sets you free to serve your creator and God.

Transition:  Return to John 8 and lets look at the critical, climax of the Sermon in The Treasury.

Freedom in the Son - John 8:36

If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.

The Singularity of Salvation

In science a singularity is a point or region of infinite mass density at which space and time are infinitely distorted by gravitational forces and which is held to be the final state of matter falling into a black hole. To me this statement of Jesus is the singularity of salvation.

It is the singularity point that we must face when all of time and eternity, all of God’s plan of salvation, all of man’s hope for heaven comes down to a single statement, a single truth. And if reject that truth then just as in the scientific definition, all that is left is a terrible eternal black hole called Hell.

What Jesus now says here in vs. 36 is the hinge point of heaven. “If the Son shall make you free.” He emphatically, clearly declares Himself as the means of freedom and salvation from sin.

Jesus is telling them, and us, that freedom was not just in the knowledge of a truth but was in knowing the One who was truth. Jesus is the truth that will set them free.

Later in the Upper Room Discourse Jesus puts it even more bluntly, John 14:6 “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

 The Single Point of Eternity

Will you be set free by accepting Jesus Christ?
The truth that sets us free is Jesus Himself. It is not the facts or history about Jesus. It is not the even truths that He spoke, but it is Jesus Himself.  I must know Him!

Freedom in our life, freedom in our eternity means Jesus in our life for all eternity.

Jesus must be my emancipator.  He must be the one to set me free.
There must be a time in my life when I have openly yielded myself to Jesus as Lord and savior. I must understand that I was born into the slavery of sin, and I cannot free myself but I can choose to stay a slave or I can choose to be set free by the blood of Jesus, who died for me.

Illustration: The Line In the Sand of Eternity

We are celebrating our birth as a nation today but as Texans there is another freedom we celebrate and that is Texas Independence and independence won by the deaths of many heroes and none so well remembered as those at the Alamo.

In that battle which saw about 100 Texians hold off 1,500 enemy troops for 13 days cost all those who fought their lives. The story goes that the commander of the Alamo Colonial William Travis gathered the troops inside the Alamo and he pulled out his saber and drew a line in the sand. He then told those men, “I now want every man who is determined to stay here and die with me to come across this line.” All but one man stepped across the line and Jim Bowie who was too sick to stand had the men carry him across on his bed.

In a sense John 8 is a line drawn in the sand of eternity. Jesus said, I am He, I am the Son and The son and only the Son will set you free. We must choose to cross that line, die to ourselves and find freedom an life in Christ or choose to remain in our sin and be a slave to that sin and death for all eternity.


This morning each of us must know if we are free or if we are slaves. Each one of us to know must know which master we have chosen. Each of us must know what side of that line in eternity we stand on.

No comments:

Post a Comment