Restraint that leads to true freedom
By Ivan Ho 25 Feb 2017
Whoever has no rule over his own spirit Is like a city broken down, without walls.
Proverbs 25:28 NKJV
A person whose heart and mind is not subject to governance does not know how to show restraint. His spirit has no control and without boundary. When a person does not restraint his own spirit, his mind wanders about here there and everywhere instead of being guided by the word of God. His spirit is easily influenced and led by the people and things he makes contacts with. He does not choose his friends nor does he choose where he goes. He is a loose canon, a free thinker whose spirit is not being channeled in the right direction nor guided by the Spirit of God. His spirit is liberal but not set free.
In contrast, a person whose spirit is subject to governance shows restraint and discipline. He keeps his spirit in control, makes the right choices under the boundaries set out by the word of God. He stays within the boundaries of godly principles and when he does that, his spirit is truly free.
Unrestrained spirit due to lack of vision
When a person lacks vision from on high, his spirit is ruled by the things that happen around him on earth instead of by the heavenly mandate he receives from above. Since his earthly insights are relative to the ever changing circumstances around him, he casts off restraints and follows after every wind of doctrine. Without restraint and government, his spirit is free to connect with any spirits that operate in the world.
When the Holy Spirit told Paul to go to Macedonia in a dream, he was not free to go to Asia or any other places he wanted to go. Instead, Paul was bound by the heavenly mandate given to him.
Unrestrained spirit due to lawlessness
When a person is governed by the laws of God, he knows that he needs to operate within the confines of spiritual principles. Imagine playing football without rules and boundaries: that’s what it would be like when a man of lawlessness does whatever he feels right in his eyes. He may think he has a free spirit but his “freedom” will lead to chaos and confusion. When we drive, we have to pay attention to the road signs and follow speed limits, so why is it that in other areas of life, we follow no rules?
Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; But happy is he who keeps the law.
Proverbs 29:18 NKJV
True freedom follows God
If we want to experience true freedom in our lives, we must first come under the government of God’s words. We need to restraint and control our spirit so that we can conduct ourselves within the confines of the laws of God’s words and revelation from above.
A person who is free exercises his freedom to make godly decisions. When people make choices that contradict the word of God, they subject themselves to the spirits of the world.
The spirit of the world says: “It’s my life, I can do whatever I want”. That person makes decisions and choices without confines and divine restraint. If it feels good to him, he goes for it.
We need to know that the universe is subject to laws and divine principles. When someone jumps off the cliff, he is going to fall to his death because he defies the law of gravity. In the same way, some people are heading towards destruction because they make decisions that defy the law of God’s words.
When we are obedient to God’s words, we are set free from self. When we are set free from self and allows Christ to govern our lives, we experience true freedom.
Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” They answered Him, “We are Abraham’s descendants, and have never been in bondage to anyone. How can You say, ‘You will be made free’ ?” Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.”
John 8:31-36 NKJV