Why do people fight so hard to remain in bondage?

Why do people fight so hard to remain in bondage? This is a question I heard recently from a peer in a discussion. It propelled me into thought and searching for an answer. Why do people fight so hard to remain in spiritual bondage, when Jesus fought so hard to set them free?

In thinking on this question two historical examples came to mind. First, I reflected on the plight of the African slaves in the U.S. They had lived generation after generation in slavery, in bondage.
Then, one man set them free with the emancipation proclamation. The freedom was theirs to walk in, to reach out and take a life they had dreamed of, but what happened? Many remained to continue in the same routine they always existed in. Housework, fieldwork, picking cotton, and so forth. They were scared of the unknown, embracing their freedom meant living a life they were ignorant of, a life that headed in a direction that was unknown. Remaining in a state of moderate bondage, continuing the same tasks and life as always was familiar, known, and comfortable.

Second, I reflected on the children of Israel. For centuries they were bound in slavery in Egypt, generation after generation knowing nothing other than bondage. They dreamed of a promised deliverer, but when he came and proclaimed God’s plan to deliver them they murmured because in working towards bringing freedom, he was making their life in slavery “worse.” Then when freedom was granted, even after the miraculous ways God delivered them from that terrible bondage, they looked back fondly remembering how “easy” things were in Egypt. How much better things were. Why? Because it was familiar, comfortable, and known. Following the path of freedom was full of unknowns, “will we have grilled manna today or roasted quail? Water from the rock or ground? Will we face giant or armies of men?” and so forth. They desired to return to the bondage of Egypt simply because it was comfortable.

Today, amidst their exodus from the bondage and the weight of sin and the world, we find Christians longing to return to the bondage that they were delivered from. Albeit, “moderate” bondage, compared to their days before Christ, but bondage still the same. Failing to embrace the emancipation proclaimation spoken by the shed blood of Jesus. There is a longing to return to what is easy, familiar, and comfortable. Why? Because it’s what they know. It’s “safe.” It’s their comfort zone, and bondage or not they find it to be easy and familiar. And, living a life that is holy and according to the Word isn’t popular or cool with people in the world. I know, our acquaintances in the world may say they respect our views, beliefs, and lifestyle choices… But we all know, we are usually the brunt of jokes and are viewed as really not all that cool, prudish, holy-rollers, etc. While we may say that it doesn’t matter, many of us want to be “cool” and “not-your-run-of-the-mill-Christian.” Because, somewhere along the line we crossed up who we’re supposed to want to be like, who we should desire to please first and foremost.

Why are we fighting so hard to stay in bodage? I’ve heard so many arguments for why it’s ok to do this and that and why that isn’t really a sin, it’s just viewed as such because of some religious traditions and opinions, it’s ok in moderation. But, let me ask you something….. Was that thing something that was a big part of your life in bondage to sin? Was it something you did when you were in spiritual slavery crying out for deliverance? For something real? Then why are you fighting so hard to continue to do it? To keep your “right” to do a habitual activity of your days before your freedom was given? Before you were delivered? What is so important about lighting up a blunt, smoking a cig, drinking a cocktail or brew? Just so you can enjoy a moderated reminder of the darkness you were delivered from? Aren’t those the activities of a person bound to sin? Aren’t those the equivalent of picking cotton and working hard in the fields as a slave? They scar your body, cause pain, and in the depths of them you long for deliverance? They are the things we’ve been delivered from regardless of personal views. They’re not the traits of redemption, they’re the shackles of the past trying to keep a hold on us to pull us back into the bondage.

God is calling out for a people, a holy people, to step out. To be separate. To be untainted. To live above reproach. To be holy as He is holy.

So I ask you,
Why are you fighting so hard to remain in bondage?

Stepping up and stepping out,
Jessica

A few scriptures for further study:

This, in essence, is the message we heard from Christ and are passing on to you: God is light, pure light; there’s not a trace of darkness in him. If we claim that we experience a shared life with him and continue to stumble around in the dark, we’re obviously lying through our teeth—we’re not living what we claim. But if we walk in the light, God himself being the light, we also experience a shared life with one another, as the sacrificed blood of Jesus, God’s Son, purges all our sin. If we claim that we’re free of sin, we’re only fooling ourselves. A claim like that is errant nonsense. On the other hand, if we admit our sins—make a clean breast of them—he won’t let us down; he’ll be true to himself. He’ll forgive our sins and purge us of all wrongdoing. If we claim that we’ve never sinned, we out-and-out contradict God—make a liar out of him. A claim like that only shows off our ignorance of God. (1 John 1:5-10 MSG)

MY LITTLE children, I write you these things so that you may not violate God’s law and sin. But if anyone should sin, we have an Advocate (One Who will intercede for us) with the Father–[it is] Jesus Christ [the all] righteous [upright, just, Who conforms to the Father’s will in every purpose, thought, and action]. And He [that same Jesus Himself] is the propitiation (the atoning sacrifice) for our sins, and not for ours alone but also for [the sins of] the whole world. And this is how we may discern [daily, by experience] that we are coming to know Him [to perceive, recognize, understand, and become better acquainted with Him]: if we keep (bear in mind, observe, practice) His teachings (precepts, commandments). Whoever says, I know Him [I perceive, recognize, understand, and am acquainted with Him] but fails to keep and obey His commandments (teachings) is a liar, and the Truth [of the Gospel] is not in him. But he who keeps (treasures) His Word [who bears in mind His precepts, who observes His message in its entirety], truly in him has the love of and for God been perfected (completed, reached maturity). By this we may perceive (know, recognize, and be sure) that we are in Him: Whoever says he abides in Him ought [as a personal debt] to walk and conduct himself in the same way in which He walked and conducted Himself. (1 John 2:1-6 AMP)

[Live] as children of obedience [to God]; do not conform yourselves to the evil desires [that governed you] in your former ignorance [when you did not know the requirements of the Gospel]. But as the One Who called you is holy, you yourselves also be holy in all your conduct and manner of living. For it is written, You shall be holy, for I am holy. (1 Peter 1:14-16 AMP)

Even as [in His love] He chose us [actually picked us out for Himself as His own] in Christ before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy (consecrated and set apart for Him) and blameless in His sight, even above reproach, before Him in love. For He foreordained us (destined us, planned in love for us) to be adopted (revealed) as His own children through Jesus Christ, in accordance with the purpose of His will [because it pleased Him and was His kind intent]– [So that we might be] to the praise and the commendation of His glorious grace (favor and mercy), which He so freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption (deliverance and salvation) through His blood, the remission (forgiveness) of our offenses (shortcomings and trespasses), in accordance with the riches and the generosity of His gracious favor, (Ephesians 1:4-7 AMP)

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