Breaking the Bond

A former student asked me to come to his church to help a young lady. If we couldn’t help her, they were going to have her committed to a mental hospital. She couldn’t understand why we couldn’t hear the voices in her head! She had been living with a drug-dealing man who treated her horribly. Finally she fled home, but that did not resolve her spiritual bondage. While hearing her story I asked her a question. What would you say if I asked you to make a commitment to never see that man again? She said, I would probably get up and leave. I thought that is what she would probably say, and I wanted the pastor (and you) to hear that.

That is a legitimate behavioral objective, but that is not how you achieve it. I said, Okay, that is your choice and I respect that. Then I asked her, Would you like to resolve these personal and spiritual conflicts? Nobody has ever said “no” to that question. With your permission then, I would like to lead you through these Steps To Freedom. In the process she prayed and asked God to reveal to her mind every sexual use of her body as an instrument of unrighteousness and God did. She had sexual relations with several people over the years and she asked God to break the bonds with each sexual partner.

After we finished the “Steps to Freedom in Christ” the voices were gone, and I explained how she could maintain her freedom in Christ. With no prompting from me she said: Do you know what? I’m never going to see that man again. That conviction came from God, not me. I understand why parents would naturally try to change their child’s behavior, especially when they are on a self-destructive course, but that is too often counter-productive. Laying down the law is not the answer, and it never has been.

The answer is to remove the barriers to our intimacy with God, then the life of Christ empowers us to make right choices and to live a righteous life. We can’t resolve these issues apart from Him, but with Christ all things are possible. “Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God. Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God, who has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life” (2 Cor. 3:4-6).

Dr. Neil

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