I believe it is generally understood that freedom is not free. The general trend of patriotism in the USA recognizes the costly price of the lives of those in the military who have defended our country. Similarly, our spiritual freedom comes at a high expense. Jesus gave His own life so that we may die to ourselves and live with Him. We must consider the cost of laying down our own lives in addition to the sacrifice of the life of Christ (though His life is worth infinitely more than ours). And the freedom that we gain is found by submitting to God’s authority, not by becoming rulers of ourselves. Any form of government (except, arguably, a monarchy or dictatorship) persists on the presumption that the subjects are submitting to authority. (In a sense, the subjects have given authority to the government, which is rather paradoxical) Choosing not to submit to authority causes chaos, and choosing not to submit to God’s authority leads to death. Some people like to say that it is because Jesus died that we can live. This is not correct. It is because He lives that we can live. Because He died, me must die too. This is the cost of discipleship, but it is totally worth it!

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