The Gospel of John: a commentary & meditation 
"The truth will make you free"

Scripture:  John 8:31-42

31 Jesus then said to the Jews who had believed in him, "If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free." 33 They answered him, "We are descendants of Abraham, and have never been in bondage to any one. How is it that you say, `You will be made free'?" 34 Jesus answered them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, every one who commits sin is a slave to sin. 35 The slave does not continue in the house for ever; the son continues for ever. 36 So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed. 37 I know that you are descendants of Abraham; yet you seek to kill me, because my word finds no place in you. 38 I speak of what I have seen with my Father, and you do what you have heard from your father." 39 They answered him, "Abraham is our father." Jesus said to them, "If you were Abraham's children, you would do what Abraham did, 40 but now you seek to kill me, a man who has told you the truth which I heard from God; this is not what Abraham did. 41 You do what your father did." They said to him, "We were not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God." 42 Jesus said to them, "If God were your Father, you would love me, for I proceeded and came forth from God; I came not of my own accord, but he sent me.

Meditation: Do you know the joy and freedom of submission to God and his word? Freedom today usually means "freedom to do as I please".  This notion of freedom, however, is a mask for servitude to one's passions and unruly desires and to the power of sin.  Jesus offers his disciples true freedom -- freedom from the slavery of fear, the slavery of  selfishness, freedom from the fear of what others might think or say about us, and freedom from hurtful desires and the power of sin. The good news of the gospel is that Christ has set us free from the power of sin.  How is this possible?  Through the power of his Holy Spirit we can choose to walk in his way of love and holiness. A disciple is a follower and a listener.  If we listen to the words of Jesus, with a humble and teachable spirit, he will give us the grace and the power to follow in his way of holiness.  Ask the Lord to open your ears to his word that you may be attentive to his voice.

Jesus came to do the will of his Father. He was not spared the cross which he willing embraced for our sake. His obedience reversed the curse of Adam’s disobedience. The Father crowned him with victory over sin, death, and Satan. Jesus shows us the way to true freedom and victory–freely submitting our heart, mind, and will to an all-merciful, all-loving, and all-wise God. What the Father offers us is a kingdom of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit (Rom.14:17).The happiest, freest people are those who delight in God. Their joy is the pleasure of doing the Father’s will. Do you know the joy of obedience?

"Lord, write your words of love and truth upon my heart and make me a diligent student and a worthy disciple of your word."

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(c) 2001 Don Schwager