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Going to Jail
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I’ve been in jail many times. In high school I was part of a singing group that went to jail to sing to the inmates. I’ve gone to visit a relative in jail. We sat across from each other talking on a phone, separated by glass. More recently I’ve attended a weekly Bible study with four of my fellow church members to share God’s word with about 20 inmates at a local correctional facility. It’s been a joy to visit the jail.

But I wouldn’t want to live in jail. It’s one thing to visit a prison once a week for a couple hours. It’s another to stay there. When I walk through the metal detector and past three locked doors and hear the final “click” of the latch behind me, I feel my loss of freedom. It doesn’t bother me too much because I know in a few hours I’ll be leaving. I enjoy seeing my friends at the prison, but I always enjoy the freedom of driving away, knowing I can go home or stop and visit friends in town. I value my liberty.

God wants us to be free as well. The Bible says, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery” (Galatians 5:1). Sin makes us slaves. Jesus has come to set us free. When we choose to follow God’s ways and live by the Bible, we live a life of freedom. The ways of this world seem like freedom, but they are really a trap that leads to bondage.

Choosing to Go to Jail

Can you imagine choosing to live in jail? Why would anyone want to give up their freedom on purpose? Yet that is what the person who turns away from God is doing. The Lord is the giver of life and freedom. When we choose Satan’s pathway, we are choosing to be slaves to sin. We choose to go to jail. Sin makes us a slave to ourselves. True freedom comes in obeying God’s laws that give life.

The Christian life is based on the service of love to God and love for others. People who are slaves to sin live only for themselves. They think focusing on their desires will make them happy. But, it is a trap and leads to death.

Are you in jail? Have you given yourself over to bondage while looking for happiness? Come to Christ. Pray and ask the Lord to forgive your sins. Jesus will unlock you from your prison and set you on a new path. Don’t go to jail. Walk in freedom.

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By Curtis Rittenour. Copyright © 2010 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW KING JAMES VERSION © 1982

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