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8 31-36 Are We Truly Free

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                                                  liberty bible church          9/14/08 a.M.

By Tom Zobrist

“Are we truly free?”

John 8:31-36


Illus. of #808- Some of us feel free because we’re young and we just got our driver’s license. There is a sense of freedom that comes with that privilege. Others of us feel a sense of freedom with an abundance of money. We can do things and go places that others in the world can only dream about. Many in the world think that youth and money will enable them to get away with anything with God. Freedom is a word that is often used. America is “the land of the free” and others have come to us when seeking the same privileges that our freedom affords. We know that freedom costs. Many have paid a high price. Thousands have died and their families have sacrificed to secure our freedoms. But, with all this freedom, in light of God’s Word and what evils our freedom has lead to, the question begs, “Are we truly free?” Is anyone truly free?  

OPEN to the passage.

Prop. In this passage, we see how we can be truly free.

Open in PRAYER.

PREVIEW the passage. Jesus is still speaking with a crowd, among whom are many religious leaders, at the Feast of Tabernacles. He has just made some spectacular claims as God and Messiah. Cf. v 21-30 Verse 30 says that many believed in Him. But, as we have seen before, He knew their hearts and that not everyone who made a profession of belief in repentance and the coming Kingdom was actually, truly a believer. Cf. John 2:23-25 How do we know if someone is truly saved? The answer to this question lies in the answer to the previous question, are we truly free? First…

 i. to be truly free, you must know the truth vs. 31-32

Illus. of #538- Knowing the truth means practicing the truth. Jesus teaches that principle to the professed believers here. 

a. knowing the truth means obeying God’s Word     

V 31a   1. Narrowing the target audience to just those professing belief, Jesus shows them the real test of faith.

V 31b  2. What does it mean to abide in His Word. We must understand and apply all that Jesus teaches. We must accept who He is and what He commands us to do. We cannot pick and choose what we like about a great teacher. We believe He is God, we believe He died for us on the cross and rose again, we believe that we are sinners and we repent of that sin and follow the commands of God’s Word. We fully grasp all of His message and believe it in our hearts. We abide or continue with Jesus every single day.

V 31c   3. That’s what differentiates the true disciples from the wannabees. And there are a lot of them in our world today, as there was in Jesus’ day. Hence the clear teaching here of what makes a true disciple of Jesus. When we are true disciples then…

b. Knowing and living the truth leads to true freedom  

V 32    1. This is talking about salvation truth; knowing Jesus as our personal Savior and Lord. Not knowing about Jesus or being a churchgoer. Someone who is fully committed, having been born again by the Spirit of God; this is the person that knows the truth.

            2. This is the person that is truly free. The one who is saved and serving. Many believers are oppressed and poor, yet they have greater joy than many American Christians that have the world at their feet. Illus. of many can be saved and not fully serving and perhaps be trapped in sin; you will not feel free and perhaps we have all felt this way at times. We’ll explain this more in our second point. Remember here that true freedom comes from being saved and being fully obedient to God’s Word. It does not come from how many toys we have.

Trans. TO BE TRULY FREE, YOU MUST KNOW THE TRUTH. Know Jesus first as your Savior and second as your Lord. Second…

ii. to be truly free, you must overcome slavery vs. 33-36

Illus. of Abe Lincoln abolished slavery in America, but some slaves stayed with their masters. They had the opportunity to go free, but they liked it where they were. Jesus abolished slavery to sin, but many stay enslaved to sin. What’s worse is…

a. most people in bondage to sin don’t even realize it    

V 33    1. As has happened before, they misunderstood. Illus. of I am amazed at the patience of Jesus as He taught these people. So patient. I wish I were so.

            2. These people had a real lack of understanding of history and current events. Abraham’s descendants had been enslaved by the Egyptians, the Assyrians, the Babylonians, the Persians, and now the Romans. In their history, they had spent very little time in freedom. They were totally blinded to their physical as well as their spiritual circumstances. Illus. of many today in the same boat. They feel truly free because they can do anything they want with little or no consequences. There are consequences, but they fail to recognize them. That’s why… 

b. those in bondage to sin are faithful to their master

V 34a   1. Again Jesus uses this affirmation statement. What He is about to say is true. Pay close attention and be ready to apply what you hear.

V 34b  2. “commits sin” is a present active participle meaning that this is a lifestyle of sin. This is someone who lives a certain way, not someone who stumbles along the way as they seek to defeat the enemy. The one living in sin is a slave of sin. They are held in captivity by their own lusts with no way of escape. They are under the power and authority of sin and sin is a cruel master. Paul used the same illustration in our Scripture reading today from Romans 6:15-23.

c. those in bondage to sin have no future home

V 35a   1. Jesus may have been conjuring images of Isaac and Ishmael. Cf. Gen. 21:8-21 As Ishmael, Abraham’s son by a slave, was cast out of the house, so are sinners in danger of rejection by God. Without Christ, they have no hope of entering the Kingdom. However…

V 35b  2. As Isaac became the son of promise, even though born after Ishmael, so believers have the promise of being joint heirs with the Son; children of God and we will abide in His house forever. That is where true freedom lies.

V 36    3. Jesus has the authority to make us free. He is over the house of God. Cf. Heb. 3:5-6 By faith in Jesus, we are children of God. Cf. Gal. 3:26 says, For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.” This is true freedom.


TO BE TRULY FREE, YOU MUST KNOW THE TRUTH and YOU MUST OVERCOME SLAVERY, slavery to sin. With all this talk of freedom, the question is, are we really, truly free?

1.      Have you been born again? GOSPEL Or merely “believing” in Jesus with no life change. 

2.      What is your attitude toward your sin? Would you say you are enslaved? Do you like it? Or do you loath it with a desire to overcome and walk like Christ?

3.      Do you desire to see others enslaved set free? Illus of the 1.3 million that sacrificed their lives during the Civil War to set slaves of men free. Many believers have sacrificed down through the ages to take the Gospel to people that are enslaved to sin and don’t even know it. Do we desire to be part of that process at some level?

Illus. of #815

Jesus said the road would be narrow and there are few who find it. You can be one of the few. Put you faith and Jesus Christ and you will be truly free.   


“Are we truly free?”

John 8:31-36


In this passage, we see how we can be truly free.

 i. to be truly free, you must know the                 vs. 31-32

a. knowing the truth means…

b. Knowing and living the truth leads to…

ii. to be truly free, you must overcome               vs. 33-36

a. most people in bondage to sin don’t…

b. those in bondage to sin are ________________to their master

                Cf. Romans 6:15-23

c. those in bondage to sin have…

                Cf. Gen. 21:8-21; Heb. 3:5-6 Gal. 3:26


With all this talk of freedom, the question is, are we really, truly free?





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