Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Price of Truth and Freedom

“The truth will make you free,” Jesus tells us. Yet it is a peculiar freedom, if Jesus is to be believed. It is, in the words of the preface to his most famous sermon, the freedom to

-to confess that we can do nothing to help ourselves in a society hell-bent on self-help and self-assertion
-to be broken-hearted in an officially optimistic society that does its best to repress pain and death
-to live by and for the will of Another in a society in which freedom has come to mean we’ve got nothing left to lose
-to refuse to ever accept the status quo till Kingdom comes
-to eschew the power of grudge and revenge in a world where such is the stuff of life in ways large and small
-to see what’s real and important amid the superficial and the spectacle
-to refuse to allow difference and disagreement to hold us at arm’s length from each other in fear
-to absorb the hurts and fear of others who strike out at us in fear, rejection, and ignorance

“The truth will make you free.” Yes, indeed. But it is, you’ll have to admit, a rather peculiar freedom. An acquired taste. This freedom costs us the multitude of unfreedoms that bear its name in this world. But freedom it is - alone and real - the stuff of life, both God’s and ours.

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