From Slavery to Freedom

slave-caravans-on-the-road

In 1619 the first African slaves were brought to the North American colony of Virginia. Legal slavery was a way of life in America until 1865.

Isaiah 61 1-3 Proclaims God’s heart for His people.  “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; 2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; 3 to grant to those who mourn in Zion— to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit; that they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.”

Acts 1:8 Proclaims God’s vision for His people.  “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

God’s Heart
God’s heart for His people is a supernatural love, and joy, and peace, which comes through a relationship with Him!
God’s heart is freedom from the bondage of sin, spiritual and emotional healing, comfort and peace. All of which results in praising Him.
God’s Vision
God’s vision is that we who know Him and power of His resurrection would be a witness of His amazing love, joy, and peace to those in our world.

In 1619 the first African slaves were brought to the North American colony of Virginia. Legal slavery was a way of life in America until 1865. Stories abound of hellish abuse of African slaves by American landowners. Life for many American slaves was one of unimaginable horrors. Some slaves were literally worked to death. Others were beaten or tortured, mutilated or branded as punishment for disobedience. Slaves were not taught to read, and were not allowed to meet together for fear of an uprising.
Yet at some point children of God who themselves were impacted by a supernatural love, joy, and peace, which comes through a relationship with Him displayed God’s heart by teaching some of the slaves that they too could find freedom from the bondage of sin, spiritual and emotional healing, comfort and peace through a relationship with the living God. Many of the slaves gained freedom through Christ long before the sin of slavery was legally abolished.
This American Folk song was passed down orally by slaves and was recorded in 1915 by John Wesley Work, an African American Scholar of Latin and Greek:
Free at last, free at last I thank God I’m free at last
Free at last, free at last I thank God I’m free at last
Way down yonder in the graveyard walk
I thank God I’m free at last
Me and my Jesus going to meet and talk
I thank God I’m free at last
On my knees when the light pass’d by
I thank God I’m free at last
Tho’t my soul would rise and fly
I thank God I’m free at last
Some of these mornings, bright and fair
I thank God I’m free at last
Goin’ meet King Jesus in the air
I thank God I’m free at last
Free at last, free at last I thank God I’m free at last
Free at last, free at last I thank God I’m free at last
In the midst of life as an American salve emerged this song of freedom. Freedom for the American slave who song this song came not in freedom from labor, or freedom from mistreatment, or freedom from bondage, but freedom in Christ!

There is another song that was passed down by American slaves and recorded by John Wesley Work in 1915. This song you might be familiar with. One of the verses is as follows.
Down in a lowly manger
Our humble Christ was born
And God send us salvation,
That blessed Christmas morn:
Go, Tell It On The Mountain,
Over the hills and everywhere;
Go, Tell It On The Mountain
That Jesus Christ is born.
The slave that found the heart of Christ, could not help but be burdened by the vision of Christ!

I’m Dying, This is the good life

Im dying
Sunday morning as I was taking communion in my office before service I was reminded of the words of Jesus.
John 12:24-26
Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. 25 Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him.
Truly Jesus was that grain of wheat that fell to the ground and was buried. Rising again He brought multitudes to life! The same is true of you and me. Unless we follow the example of Christ and die to our own will, we will not bear fruit. If we, like Christ, lay down our lives in service to the Father, we will bear much fruit.
After I took communion, and finished praying, I wrote this song.
Lord I come to die
To lay down my life
So here I am a living sacrifice
I’m dying, this is the good life

Lord I’m giving up
Lord I’m laying down
Lord wont You plant this seed into the ground
I’m dying, this is the good life

That I might live again
In power and victory over sin
Resurrected Free
Not I but Christ in me
I’m dying, this is the good life