What if I advocate that many of us remain captive to the past to our restrictive self-existence, rather than living the new life Christ offers. This remains so, though, we claim and proclaim liberation through the gospel message. This kind of enslavement is not about what we do, our daily activities, our failures and errors, but about how we think in the new economy of things. But it is about us not understanding that holding on to the past, not letting go of what was, the way things was done must be continued, maintaining the status quo, no change is an enslavement of the human spirit and restriction to our God given incredible human potential. The same way we cannot view the world when we are mature in the light of when we were teenagers, we cannot view our new life in Christ in light of when we were in sins chains. It is a heart, mind and soul transformation thing!
How can this be that that we are free in Christ, but still in chains? A seemingly yet very apparent inconsistent way to advance our individual and personal human self-development. I may be so bold to advocate that where this inconsistency originates, is that transformation between our human utility and our spiritual life purpose. No human focus his mind on what it is that he wants in life without predisposition; or if he does, he fails to proceed and so fall away into the packed lanes of human failings. He continues to see his existence in light of physical worth and self-aggrandisement rather than spiritual growth worth and accomplishment. Material possessions drive his daily utility, those who have nothing are despised, wealth is his message, and his gospel is increased worldly possessions. Listen to the message, it is not about the money, it is all about God and His Christ! Many with material wealth but poor in faith will not see God. However, many poor in possessions and material wealth but rich in faith will be in the kingdom of God. Therefore, many fail living the freedom Christ offers, not modifying our minds to new utility but essentially regressing, returning to the very comportment we had renounced.
We may then have to set aside our former understanding of wisdom and embark on one involves an all-incorporating process that whelms the entirety of the human experience. Freedom affords us the power or right to act, to speak, or to think as we desire and wants.
We have a certain degree of freedom of choice about what we want in life and where we go. We have certain right to live where we chose to life, to marry, to have a family, a certain or limitless entitlement under the human rights articles to our life! Therefore, freedom is the state of not being imprisoned or enslaved. Associated with freedom are terms like liberty, liberation, release, emancipation, deliverance, delivery, discharge, non-confinement, extrication; amnesty, pardoning, ‘the captives made a frantic attempt for freedom.’ This happens because they understand the value and worth of what it means to be free!
Enslavement is the opposite of freedom and is the action of making someone a slave; it is about subjugation of your will and God given purpose in life. Many nations experience in history, the enslavement of Jews and millions of Africans are fresh in the mind. Terms associated with enslavement are subjugation, disenfranchisement, suppression, tyranny, subjection, oppression, domination, exploitation, persecution; slavery, servitude, bondage, forced labour; bonds, chains, fetters, shackles, restraints, yoke etc. The enslavement of Africans continued for most of the nineteenth century and many millions continue in the modern world.
However bad physical enslavement is, the captivity of our minds is equally paralysing. When we are unable to free ourselves from the constraints of our minds, our purpose, and our goals cannot be achieved. We can be physically free but our minds under constraints can limit our utility and block our progress. However if our minds are liberated, no physical chains can constrains us! Though not a believer in Christ, the late Reggae artists, Marley capture it well when he wrote, ‘Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery.
None but ourselves can free our minds.’ When we are unwilling to let go of experiences and understanding and let God enlighten us. When we are claiming change yet see our church still in the 1950s – 1980s, we are still in bondage to the past. I got news for you, the church started long before those eras! However, no human is more desperately enslaved and remains in bondage than those who deceptively believe they are liberated. Enslavement of the human mind is the captivity of our present capabilities and potential accomplishment, thereby restricting our future hope.
This is so when we carelessly accept any unproven religion, any populist political, social or economic system, any unproven mythical doctrine, so we become like robots unable to think for ourselves. True freedom means we choose freely, we are free to express opinions and make meaningful decisions that affect our lives where we want to go. This kind of freedom comes to us through the redemptive works of the Lord Jesus Christ. No man can touch the freedom of the heart, mind and soul affords us through the liberated message of the gospel of Christ. ‘So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed’ (John 8: 36NIV). This freedom is all encompassing and involves the totality of our being, mind, heart and soul! Wow, what a release and relief that brings. Our enslavement to the physical human utility and experience, the former way of thinking is no more. Our freedom in Christ liberates us from our confined human way of thinking and human utility. It affords us the ability to think clearly now, to understand our incredible human potential and guarantees our future, the kingdom of Christ. ‘He sets me free one day, Christ sets me free, He burst the bars of prison for me!’
Christ affords His followers to think outside the box, think in new ways, and to be willing to accept and embrace change. One size does not fit all, neither do we all have the same likes and dislikes. When it comes to understanding the scriptures we must never be redistricted to the eras when we first believe or accept Christ, but change as new truth comes to the fore. No man have all the answers to the Scriptures, and no church have all the truth. We must accept scholasticism, people who can learn the biblical languages and see the scriptures through the lenses of history, language, culture and understand what is prescriptive and what is descriptive. Not holding on to the past, rejecting the need for trained leadership! Christ trained his followers before he sent them out in the world as apostles.
Today the misguided reject this kind of training, misquoting that the Holy Spirit trained you, rather than ‘bringing things, (what they were taught) back to their memory.’ We accept everyone in our pulpits without any form of training, people who can quote a few Scriptures, shout ‘hallelujah’ a lot, speak a few tongues, you are spiritual, you are in! Especially when they call you, Holy Ghost man! Body-ism, nepotism is ripe in our present organisations. People are not chosen for biblical defined terms of gifted-ness and ability. Its about who you know, who knows you, how long you are in the church, and its about availability for some. What do we do with out tithes and offerings? People who start a church, believe they must lead it, despite their blatant biblical unqualified and unworthy leadership status.
I put it to you my friends, the church will remain stagnated, constantly complaining about the needs, enslaved to misguided beliefs and practices until we train our leaders in leadership! The Holy Spirit cannot operate in a state of confusion, you go to some church ans every two words spoken is mixed with tongue speaking. We are not willing to change, because our minds are still in captivity to the past, it is the way I saw it, and the way it must remain. Until we embrace the freedom Christ offers and live in that freedom there will be no change. Until we liberated our minds from the slavery we impose on our worship and church activity. Until we have spiritually liberated minds, people in leadership that are chosen by the Holy Spirit and with the right gift set. Until we see leadership that are biblically trained, in the disciplines of theology, hermeneutics, at least a diploma in divinity, we lack vision and will continue to stumble in the darkness of spiritual mind enslavement. A degree in engineering even a doctorate in any secular field is not sufficient for church leadership!
For almost thirty years this has been my message. This message will not change no matter the rejection of any organisation. The church, the gospel it preach is not about man, but about God. When human put God first we will grow as a church, this can only happen when our minds are free to embrace change. When we accept Christ liberated message, we are able to see clearly where God wants us and where we need to go. We are truly liberated when we give up our human way of thinking and utility, let God control our minds and fill it with his message of liberation, what it means to be truly free.