Isaiah 53:5

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Lately, the Lord has been showing me more of what America stands for: the Constitution, the multitude of men and women who have given up their lives for our freedoms and the liberties they fought for then so we could enjoy them today and how God is still in control amongst this chaotic world.

During this eye-opening lesson, an unbelieving young man at work came to me and shared about his friend scolding him harshly over a Facebook posting he had recently done. He said it was a picture of each branch of the military matched up with a president or actor of some sort. He thought it was funny, but couldn’t understand his friend’s hostility toward him.

I began to explain why his friend could be as angry as he was. I also added that not knowing for certain of what this posting looked like, I, too, might be angry but would have corrected him in a different manner. I began to explain to him just a few of our freedoms such as free speech, the right to bear arms and the freedom to worship God freely. I told him of the many who have died for these beliefs and those who remain alive but continue to struggle with the effects of war- these things are not funny. I noticed his countenance shifted after revealing I, too, am a Marine. With that, I encouraged this young man to watch a YouTube video on Francis Scott Key, the author of the “Star Spangled Banner”. Many people can sing this song, but without knowing the story or envisioning its real life occurrence will have sung this in vain.

The correlation between the lesson, the young man at work and the infallible Scripture from the prophet Isaiah in the fifth verse of the fifty-third chapter is this… While multitudes (believers and unbelievers alike) have died over the years to protect our physical freedoms, there is only One who died for the eternal freedom of all mankind. Isaiah wrote of Jesus, the Son of Man, because God revealed it to him roughly 750 years before His crucifixion. Our true freedom lies in Christ alone. Where men have sought to defend freedom in the now, Jesus was whipped, beaten, crushed, pierced and crucified ONCE, for our sins and rebellion SO THAT we could be healed and made whole for ALL ETERNITY. Christ conquered death; He is victorious over all things, the seen and the unseen.

We, too, have a choice to believe this factual event of His death and resurrection; we, too, have a choice to believe His death covered our sins of the past, present, and the future. And we, too, have a choice to walk with Him every day of our lives. Learning and growing in our relationship with Jesus is to truly trust in, rely on and lean on Him alone. As a result of what Jesus did for us on the cross we get to receive His salvation, we get to be called the brothers and sisters of Jesus, and we get to be His bondservants. Because of His eternal love, His one-time sacrifice and His daily grace and mercy to us, we can walk confidently in faith and grow in the giftings the Holy Spirit has given to us! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

Harley Wright (March 2016)