FREEDOM – but still bound?

Although all blood-bought, adopted children of the living God are free from satan’s bondage, we sometimes act as if we are imprisoned by it. Satan lies, telling us we cannot escape.

In the years before animal cruelty stopped much of the use of animals in circuses, we would often see, outside the bigtop, huge elephants tied to a small stake in the ground.  We know the strength of the elephant. We know it could very easily pick that stake out of the ground, with as little effort as pulling a toothpick from a cheerio.

Why doesn’t it?  Elephants are known to have great memories.

Wild elephants are broken in to domestic use when they are young.  They are chained to a huge tree trunk or to a thick iron stake driven deep into the ground.  This stake is physically able to hold the young elephant, despite the elephant’s repeated attempts to escape it. After unsuccessfully trying many times to escape, the young elephant associates the pain with the pulling and it breaks their will to resist. 

This belief is carried into adulthood. When the elephant is full grown, it could easily break free from the small stake to which it is now chained, yet it never even attempts to do so. This intelligent, powerful creature is held captive, not by any physical restraint, but by its own memories and its belief in them.  He doesn’t think he can, so he can’t, and the memory of the pain stops him from trying.

It’s not the stake in the ground keeping him in place.
It’s the thought in his mind that keeps him there.


Why do we continue to be tied to a stake
when Jesus has set us free to soar?

Romans 6:14
Sin shall not have dominion over you

Romans 6:18
Having been made free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness

John 10:10
(Jesus said) I am come that they might have life,
and that they might have it more abundantly.


Are we tethered to circumstances
from which we could easily break free,
if only we believed we could?


1 Corinthians 10:13

God is faithful.
He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able,
but with the temptation will also make the way of escape,
that you are able to bear it.

James 4:7
Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.

 

Do we allow our thoughts to be our prison,
or do we set them free to let us soar?

Romans 12:2
Do not be conformed to this world,
but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

Philippians 2:5
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus

1 Corinthians 2:16
We have the mind of Christ

Mr Anon says: If you think you can, or if you think you can’t, you’re absolutely right.

Do we fail to act on the promises of God
which enable us (Him in us)
to gain victory over our enemies
of the world, the flesh and the devil,
and all the ‘circumstances’ of life?

1 Corinthians 15:3 
Christ died for our sins. 
–  (for each and every one of our sins)

1 Corinthians 15:57
Thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 6:10,11,16
Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.
Put on the whole armour of God
that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
Above all, take the shield of faith
with which you will be able to quench ALL the fiery darts of the wicked one.

 

One of the devil’s greatest tools
is to try to erect a stronghold in our mind
to make us think we can’t do something God has told us to do.
That’s why the Bible says in

Ephesians 4:27,
“DO NOT GIVE THE DEVIL A FOOTHOLD.”

If we give the devil an inch, he’ll take our smile;
he will rob us of our joy
– and he has hindered the work of God which He called us to perform.

About meetingintheclouds

I am Cloudwatcher, a 76 year old Christian lady, happily married to a wonderful man for over 50 years. We have five wonderful sons, all with at least one University degree and in top positions in their chosen fields. One son is still single but four have found perfect wives and they have given us five lovely grandchildren. I was born in England and while I'm proud of my English heritage, I am doubly proud to be a true-blue, fair-dinkum Aussie. My husband and I are committed Christians whose first priority is to love and serve our risen Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. My life story will tell of my journey from abuse to peace. I suffered 22 years of abuse, being constantly told I was totally evil and an ugly freak: no one would ever want me, so I might as well do the world a favour and kill myself.
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41 Responses to FREEDOM – but still bound?

  1. Thanks for an excellent post, Angela. One of the most powerful promises me often miss, is in thew middle of 1Cor. 10:13 that you also quoted. (but with the temptation will also make the way of escape) He makes a way of escape, but we fail to look for it and therefore fail to follow it!
    God bless.
    Herman of bibledifferences.net

    • Hi Herman. Thank you for your added input.

      It is so important to look for that ‘way of escape’ for we KNOW there is ALWAYS one there. Praise God that He has all bases covered. He has supplied ALL the resources we need in order to live victorious Christian lives, but the responsibility is ours to take hold of and use those resources.

      We serve an amazing God!

  2. Ann says:

    Thanks for sharing, Dearest Angela

    What a wonderful and thought-provoking piece! The entire post is beautiful but this segment impacts me greatly :
    “It’s not the stake in the ground keeping him in place.
    It’s the thought in his mind that keeps him there.”

    I am so very thankful that His love set me free!! I don’t have to be bound by my thoughts or the what others .think of me. I am truly blessed!

    Blessings
    ann

    • How thankful we are that the old Communist accusation that Christianity is nothing but ‘pie in the sky when you die’ is totally false!

      Jesus died to save us, but He lives to KEEP us and through Him we have victory over the temptations of our enemies: the world the flesh and the devil. Praise God for setting us free and making us more than conquerors . . . when we submit to Him and His control.

      What an amazing God!

  3. pbus1 says:

    Angela,

    I visited this post several days ago. I was truly blessed by the words shared here! The analogy you used was so profound, yet simple! The Scriptures, and your words penetrated my heart! What a blessing! May the Lord bless you, abundantly!

    Paulette

    • Lyn Leahz says:

      Amen Paulette..I agree with you…profound and a blessing are her words. Angela is always a blessing to us! What would we do without her? God bless Angela..and God love and bless you too, sister Paulette. ♥♥♥

      • pbus1 says:

        May the Lord bless Angela, indeed! Thank you so much, Lyn. May the Lord bless you, as well! Love, Paulette

        • Thank you to both of you, but I know you will both agree that anything we do is ONLY because of the work the Lord does IN us and then THROUGH us.

          What a privilege it is to be used by Him to further His work on earth.

          What an amazing God!

  4. mtsweat says:

    Truly an awesome analogy Angela! Your work convinces me that nothing happens in this world that God hasn’t secured rights to for the proclamation of His gospel. Just the slightest of effort and the peg will be removed. Lord, let us not remain enslaved where You have made us free! Blessings good friend.

    • Thanks Mike. Just think how different the world would be if ALL the blood-bought, adopted children of the living God acted on His promises and followed His will completely! The world would be turned upside down. I need to remember that it starts with me – and each individual.

      What an amazing God!

  5. jelillie says:

    Reblogged this on Reinventing the We'll and commented:
    These are wonderful truths penned by my friend Angela!

  6. jelillie says:

    Such a powerful thought Angela and one we need to hear again and again. For when we once apprehehnd the truth the Enemy constantly tries to dispossess us of the knowledge. We need to remind ourselves daily of the Freedom which Christ bought for us. By faith it is attained and by attention to the truth it is maintained! May I reblog!

    • Thanks J. We accept the fact that no man can serve two masters. We accept the fact that our old master only wants the worst for us, and that our new Master only wants the very, very best for us . . . and yet we fall into the trap of the old master (who is no longer a master) and sometimes we don’t even realise it. How wonderful that our gracious God ALWAYS convicts and challenges, and then empowers and enables us to get out – when we submit to Him.

      What an amazing God!

      (Of course you can reblog or use any material here. It was given by the Lord and is therefore available to all His children)

  7. cshowers says:

    Amen Angela! I’ve often used the elephant analogy when talking to others about breaking the chains that bind them… There’s also a slave mentality – much like the children of Israel faced. Part of them wants to be free, while the other part of them is at odds with it, thinking, “At least I know how to deal with things if they stay the same,” never realizing that once they relinquish their ties with whatever binds them, they will be much better off.

    • Thanks for adding the slave mentality bit. So true.
      I know the elephant analogy is very old. I first heard it about 50 years ago. For this reason I was reluctant to use it here, but it was the way the Lord led. I have been surprised to find that not many had heard it before, but regardless, it gives a vivid, memorable lesson which is greatly needed in today’s world.

      We have been set free and we should no longer serve our previous master.

      What an amazing God!

  8. Reblogged this on This Blogging Thing and commented:
    Do not fall for the tricks of the enemy. Whom ever the Son has set free is free indeed

  9. I have no chains on my feet, yet I am not free. Angela, this excellent post, reminds me of a quote from “Redemption Song” written and sung by the late Robert Nesta Marley. “Emancipate yourself from mental slavery”. Mental slavery is the only weapon the enemy use to trick us into believing in his schemes. He gets into the minds and heads of his victims in the same way he did with the first family in the garden of Eden. He lies, and he makes false promises that he cannot or wish to keep. Nevertheless God has provided an escape route–Jesus. The only thing we need to do is accept Jesus and reject the enemy. Matthew warns that we should “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:13-14).

    • The devil is very clever, attacking the mind with persuadive arguments. He is also a master artist, camouglaging evil to make it attractive and appealing.

      “But God” . . . Arguably my favourite words in the Bible . . . But God empowers us to overcome when we submit to Him. The devil and all his forces are deafeated foes. Praise God who gives us the victory in Christ.

      What an amazing triune God!

  10. jstair says:

    Reblogged this on One Man's Faith and commented:
    A great analogy from a blogger I follow!

  11. jstair says:

    Excellent post! Absolutely wonderful! Thank you for this inspiration & that analogy!

    • Thanks jstair. Our amazing God has given us so much. He has placed all the resources of heaven at our disposal. He has given us all we need in our battle against the world, the flesh and the devil . . . and yet at times we ignore them and go our own defeated way when He has guaranteed us victory in Jesus. What fools we are – and yet He lovingly reminds us and draws us back to Himself.

      What an amazing God who has set us free. Let us claim our freedom in His Name and in His power.

  12. alwayzhis says:

    A what encouraging post sister Angela. Wake up in the morning… make sure our God-given armor is in place; helmet of salvation, loins gird with the Truth, feet shod properly so we are able to share the hope within, the Sword of the Spirit–the Word of God; then grab that shield. Thank you for your posts.
    Waiting while serving an Amazing, Loving God!
    Stephanie

    • Hi Stephanie. Yes, the armour He has provided is so very important. We cannot possibly walk this life alone, but He has provided ALL we need to enable us to live victorious lives for Him, until the day He takes us home. We are one day closer!

      What an amazing God!

  13. Wow! What an eye-opening moment I just had! This post has given me so much insight into why I still feel like a victim at times from abuse I suffered as a child. Wow is all I can say, and thank you! Thank you so much for posting this. God Bless!

    • Hi faithnhopealways. As one who suffered extreme abuse of all kinds for the first 22 years of my life, I understand what you are saying. It is surprising how, after so many years, thought patterns which were ingrained as a child can still rise to the surface and try to dominate. What an amazing God we have that He convicts us of wrong thoughts and empowers and enables us to discard them and to give HIM His rightful place.

      We serve an amazing God who only wants the very, very best for us, and works in us to achieve His purpose.

  14. Anna Popescu says:

    I’m definitely saving this one, Cloudwatcher. I have a good friend who is in this state of mind right now and it hurts my heart to see it. I know God will give me the opportunity to use this in his life soon. Thank you!

  15. Rob Barkman says:

    Hi Angela,
    Thank the Lord for the freedom that He has given to us…. may we all grasp this freedom by faith and know that we are no longer under the slavery of sin! Lord bless.

  16. Debbie says:

    Thank you for another powerful post, packed full of His word and promises . .. promises of our freedom and ability to do all things through Him. I am going to pray and take this before Him, because sometimes those lies get into our believe system, from long ago . ..like those young elephants. He is so faithful to show us what we are letting hinder us and keep us from doing all He desires and enables us to!
    God bless you, mentor Angela, as you proclaim His truth!

    • Thanks Debbie. Yes, it is surprising how often our thought patterns fly back to things believed years ago. I had to ‘unlearn’ a tremendous amount when I became a C hristian, but the ‘unlearning’ process isn’t over. God still convicts about wrong thinking – but the best part? He not only convicts but empowers and enables us to destroy those thoughts and implant new ones!

      What an amazing God!

  17. I woke up this morning with the first sentence from Ephesians 6:10 in my head! Then I read your post.

  18. admin says:

    God is so good! He sets us free from the lies which have bound us and gives us victory!

  19. Heather says:

    I’m so glad you quoted Romans 12:2. That is exactly what came to mind while reading the first part of your article!
    When I am feeling weak or have committed an act of sin and am feeling ashamed, it is so easy for the enemy to gain a foothold by focusing on thoughts such as “I’m just a Christian impersonator because a real Christian wouldn’t struggle with this sort of temptation, I can’t be forgiven for THAT offense, I’ll never prove to be good enough to spend eternity with Jesus” etc.
    As long as I concentrate on myself and my own shortcomings, the reality of Christ’s victory and freedom from sin and it’s consequences continues to elude my thoughts.

    • Heather, I am so thankful that it doesn’t depend on us! At times like that we need to act on “Don’t give the devil a foothold’. I’ll agree with him but then tell him plainly that the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses from all sin and that he has NO claim on me!

      What an amazing God!

  20. Lyn Leahz says:

    Amen Angela! Why, I don’t know..it’s awful, isn’t it? People can be free from bondage but prefer to stay in chains.

    • Lyn, I can’t help but wonder if they’ve ever known the blessedness of freedom from bondage. Surely anyone who has tasted the peace and joy of the asbiding presence of our triune God and experienced His help in all areas of living, could never prefer to stay in chains!

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