Christianity is often portrayed as a lifestyle that is restrictive and cramping. I wonder though; do we consider the requirement to drive on the left of the road restrictive and cramping? Imagine the freedom we would have if we could unilaterally drive on either side of the road! We would have no freedom to travel on the roads safely and we would be at inherent danger as pedestrians from crashes that over spilled onto the pavement. Or would we argue that in order to have freedom we should be allowed to drive on the pavement anyway.
What price freedom then? Effectively we would have no freedom to travel. One safeguard provides us with a huge freedom. God wants us to have freedom but freedom to live our lives safely and without coming to harm. God’s laws are the warning signs that it is dangerous to go this way. Not dangerous for God, not dangerous for Christianity, but dangerous for us. The disastrous trouble is that often we think we know better.
It is no accident that at least five of the ten commandments have found a form in the laws of all countries where human rights are considered important. Actually they have found a form in all countries for the majority of the population, even if some of the elite deem them inappropriate as they are above the law.
Strangely though Christians shouldn’t need God’s law encoded into civil law, God’s law should be a way of life for us. The encoding of God’s law is almost an admission of failure by society. The one thing Christianity cannot be, and should never be, is a religion that is spread by force or coercion. The only way to spread Christianity is by kindness and by love.
So the thought for this week is what would I get away with if the civil law wasn’t there? How would my morals stand up to being only constrained by my opinion of, and loyalty to, God?
If you want to find out more about living a life of freedom then this Sunday, in a church near you, a pastor, priest or minister will be running a course on keeping to the safe path that leads to true freedom. Why not go along and get a map?