“Jesus therefore was saying to those Jews who had believed in Him, ‘If you abide in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.’” John 8:31-32
All that believe in Jesus are promised forgiveness, but only disciples are promised freedom. “I thought all believers were disciples?” Apparently not, because Jesus said to believers that they would only be disciples if they abided or continued in His word. Just because someone believes in Jesus doesn’t mean they have disciplined their lives to learn and live out of His truth.
What is the truth that will make us free? Jesus first talks about the slavery of sin and then gives the plan for freedom: “The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son does remain forever. If therefore the Son shall make you free, you shall be free indeed.” (John 8:35-36) A slave is only secure while he performs – his master uses him to get work done but makes no long term commitment. A son, on the other hand, is loved just because he was born. He is born into favor and has nothing to prove.
Jesus frees us by making us the very children of God. Knowing this in our heads may be the beginning of freedom, but it’s when we continue in this truth until the Father fills our hearts with it that we experience the “free indeed.” Are you living your Christianity from the privileged position of favored child, or are you still struggling to perform well enough to be accepted? Let’s persevere in the truth of our favored position until our hearts fully catch it and we become free indeed.