Where Freedom Reigns

If revival and reformation are to take place, those of us who follow Jesus Christ must first deal with the condition of our hearts and our houses of worship before attempting to change a nation.

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In our world where being woke has become a badge of honor for some, a document like the Declaration of Independence has fallen out of favor. The document has become an opportunity to attach unseemly labels to those who honor its principles. Those labels are part of the insanity our nation is displaying to the world.

The following text is taken from the second paragraph of the Declaration of Independence, a document that was a formal declaration made by those who would become the first citizens of America declaring they would no longer allow themselves to be governed and controlled by Britain. The charges in the Declaration were addressed to the King of England, the man dictating the control. 

As you read the words, instead of viewing them from a position of distant history and addressing political change, apply them to the Church of today, where in some cases, the voice of the Spirit has been muted, even restricted. Some in positions of leadership within the Church are living in fear of what a woke culture might think of them, therefore, allowing those under their leadership to be controlled, not set free. 

“That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to 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.”

The language and punctuation of the document appear dated, but the principles expressed will endure. Those principles are the reason why a flood of immigrants, those who are seeking freedom and who are honest and desperate, are flooding over our southern border. That flood is not taking place in China or North Korea.

The tools and methods we employ to bring about change within the Church are not natural. They are spiritual and redemptive. The underlying principle of such change is freedom empowered by love. As followers of Jesus Christ, our freedom is so powerful it can be experienced anywhere and under any condition, no matter how harsh the threat of punishment might be for those who resist. Once we experience a taste of spiritual freedom and live out the principles of that freedom, we will become a living testimony of what true freedom looks like, a freedom that will offer hope to all people no matter the depth of their oppression or the loss of their hope. That kind of freedom has the power to change the direction of a local church, a nation, and the world.  

If revival and reformation are to take place, those of us who follow Jesus Christ must first deal with the condition of our hearts and our houses of worship before attempting to change a nation. If we are not free in our hearts and in our houses of worship to exercise true spiritual freedom, all our efforts to reform a culture will be for not. We will end up employing tools limited to a natural process of change and become just like the overlords who demand our compliance to a lesser form of life and faith.


This is an updated edition of a post originally published on Garris Elkins

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About the Author

Garris Elkins is a Kingdom Winds Contributor. He and his wife, Jan, serve the global Church through writing, speaking, and mentoring. They live in southern Oregon, tucked away in the foothills of the Rogue Valley. Their shared desire is to have each person learn how to hear the heart of God and become a transforming voice in their culture.

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