Freedom, Liberty & Independence

Introduction: Billy Graham,‘From cover to cover, God’s Word points to freedom in Christ. And God doesn’t leave us wondering how to grab hold of the freedom He offers. It starts with acknowledging our brokenness—and admitting we are slaves to sin. And it ends with choosing Jesus and following Him daily. Only He can break the bonds of slavery and lead us to true freedom, now and forever’.

John 8:36 “Therefore if the Son makes (sets) you free, you shall be free indeed’. (NKJ)

Galatians 5:1 ‘Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free1, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage’. (NKJ)

Introduction: Billy Graham,‘From cover to cover, God’s Word points to freedom in Christ. And God doesn’t leave us wondering how to grab hold of the freedom He offers. It starts with acknowledging our brokenness—and admitting we are slaves to sin. And it ends with choosing Jesus and following Him daily. Only He can break the bonds of slavery and lead us to true freedom, now and forever’.

Written by Dr. Art Lindsley, Published on July 4, 2016

https://tifwe.org/seven-implications-of-biblical-freedom/

Today’s holiday presents us with an opportunity to reflect on the biblical view of freedom and its implications for our lives.

Freedom in the Bible begins as inner freedom from bondage to sin that leads us to desire outer freedom for ourselves and others. Inner freedom bears outer implications.

I’ve written elsewhere about the details of freedom in both the Old Testament and the New Testament. What I’m concerned with today is providing a summary of what the biblical view of freedom means for how we live our lives.

Redemption as a Basis for Our Freedom

When thinking about freedom, it’s important to remember that redemption applies to all of life. On a personal level, we are redeemed from sin. On a corporate level, we are also brought into a new community, the body of Christ (I Cor. 12:13). But redemption extends beyond the personal and the corporate to the whole cosmos.  Acts 3:21 says that God’s ultimate goal is the “restoration of all things.” Creation itself “will also be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God” (Rom. 8:21).

Freedom cannot be limited to inner transformation. Of necessity it must extend to all of life. Jesus not only preached and taught; he also healed peoples’ bodies. People were freed inwardly and outwardly. Where Christ’s freedom is experienced, the natural outworking is towards political, religious, and economic freedom (read more about that here).

It’s no surprise, then, that believers have been on the forefront of freedom movements for the abolition of slavery both past (e.g., William Wilberforce) and present (e.g.,  International Justice Mission). Many believers have worked to fight for religious freedom nationally and internationally (e.g., Barnabas Fund). We are called to fight against injustice wherever we see it in personal and public life.

Seven Implications of the Biblical View of Freedom

Freedom from the bondage to sin, the Law, death, and lies about reality will inevitably push further and further out till it leads to freedom in all areas of life. Here are seven implications for our lives from this truth.

  1. Freedom is not autonomy or doing what you feel like doing without any constraints. In fact, following Christ’s commands frees you to be more of the person God created you to be.

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Freedom vs. Independence vs. Liberty

Freedom, liberty, and independence are often used interchangeably. These are similar words but are different.

It is important to understand the meaning of each word to use them correctly properly. 

  1. Freedom,” is defined as the state of being free to enjoy social, political as well as civil liberties.
  • It can be considered as the power to decide actions of one and state of being free from manacles and imprisonment.
  •  It is the ability of an individual to make choices which are free from pressure or restriction.


Application: Sometimes, even if an individual has free will or freedom, he is bound to follow to religious as well as ethical principles because they are accountable for all his actions.

Freedom has its roots in word ‘free’, which is an old Indian word ‘priya’, which means friend. In Romanic languages ‘priya’ is survived from Latin forms ‘privus’ which means exceptional or standing apart.

All of these are used in context to someone or something which have no burdens, imposed obligations or interferences.

Freedom itself describes a state in which one is capable of doing actions according to their own wishes without any external compulsions. 

  • The word independence is often used for a country as well as a state when the residents of nation enjoy self-government in that particular country.


We call as dependent territory when a nation is not independent.  In a wider sense when some groups of people have whole control on the certain geographical area we can call it independence.


Independent means that an individual can do something without depending on others, while freedom has a bigger boundary which does not have any restriction or rules.


Independence is related to the capability of self-determination and freedom to the absence of obstacles to work out that.

Independence can be considered as an outbound volatile faculty whereas freedom is a set of external circumstances which allows you or not allowed to exercise your will.

Independent means not having any dependencies.  But one can be voluntarily dependent on someone or something and not give up their freedom. 

In particular, they could change their mind and end that dependency.

  • Liberty is the word that is also used for independence and freedom of people but in a different sense.

Application: Normally, we use the word liberty at that time when we see that people of any independent country have rights to wear anything of their own choice and go everywhere with anyone. In such situation, we say that people are living with liberty.

Liberty” is defined as “the right and the power to believe, act, and express oneself as one chooses, of being free from restriction, and having the freedom of choice. It is the condition of having the power to act and speak without restraints.”

Word liberty comes from the Latin word ‘libertas’ meaning ‘the status of a descendant’. Liberty refers to fact that descendants enjoy the same social position as that of their predecessors. This definition is normally used in context to full rights and responsibilities according to which one becomes a member of a specific group.

Liberty is a condition in which an individual behaves according to his will and govern himself, by taking responsibility for actions and behaviours. Having liberty does not mean to go against ethics and moral values.

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2. Freedom is within the context of Law. We are not under the obedience to the Law as a condition of salvation, but the moral Law and Christ’s commands give us a guide to know how to live and to love.

3. We are truly free when we know the truth about ourselves and the world. This means throwing off the lies and deceptions to which we are so often captive.

4. Salvation is not primarily political liberation (as in some theologies). But God often intervened when his people were oppressed by unjust totalitarian leaders (Exodus and Judges, for example).

5. Inner renewal often leads to outer consequences (and renewal of the land).

6. The Bible doesn’t prescribe one type of government but freedom (political, economic, and religious) is consistent with (not contradictory to) the Bible. More on that here.

7. Inner freedom inevitably drives toward outer freedom. You can have political, economic, and religious freedom and still be in bondage to sin. You can have inner freedom in an oppressed situation. But inner and outer freedoms are the most ideal state for human beings (Micah 4:4).

Conclusion: Believers should be the freest to enjoy life and God’s creation, as long as it is within the structure of how God has made us. We are not free from God-ordained obligations, but we are free to live life as God intended it to be lived.

Billy Graham,‘From cover to cover, God’s Word points to freedom in Christ. And God doesn’t leave us wondering how to grab hold of the freedom He offers. It starts with acknowledging our brokenness—and admitting we are slaves to sin. And it ends with choosing Jesus and following Him daily. Only He can break the bonds of slavery and lead us to true freedom, now and forever’.

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