In these recent days, God has been speaking to my heart concerning freedom. When I was a little boy growing up in Kentucky, I remember how happy I was on the fourth of July weekend. There was a certain liberty and freedom in throwing cherry bombs and firecrackers and enjoying the liberty of the explosions. To me as a child, that was real freedom. When the Fourth of July came, it was a time when love really flowed between me and my Dad. We both looked forward to exploding our arsenal of explosives together. It was one day during the year when my Dad and I were of one mind. Years later, I discovered that our Heavenly Father wants us to experience REAL freedom through His son, Jesus Christ. Please consider this scripture prior to setting out to study the ten steps. My hope is that these steps may assist you in your pilgrimage upon the earth in the Lord’s freedom. Jesus says in John 8, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. And the servant abideth not in the house forever but the Son abideth forever. If the Son therefore shall make you free, you shall be free indeed.” Earlier in this same chapter he says, “And ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.”
The first step to real freedom, freedom in God, freedom with yourself, freedom in this world, is to fully, completely totally commit your own will to be free. If you don’t want to be free, there is no way that anyone or anything can force you to be free. If a person is an addict or whoremonger, and he does not choose to WANT to be free, he will never be free. But if we set our will to serve God with our whole heart, He prepares the way, a path where there is total and complete freedom. God’s first requirement then is that you wish to be free and that you set your will for total freedom; to want freedom more than life it’s self. That you would rather die than to be in bondage. True Freedom requires a 100% commitment of the will.
This second step toward freedom requires an honestly look see your needs as God see them and honestly expose your needs. If you went to doctor and said, “Doc, I have a problem with an appendicitis and I want you to operate but I can’t take my clothes off,” he would probably give you a long look and say something like, “Well I guess we will just have to wait until you’re willing to disrobe before I can begin to fix the problem..” Spiritually, in order to be ministered freedom by the Lord, you need to be willing to expose the area that hurts . . . both to yourself, to Him and perhaps someone who is able to counsel with you. Without exposing your need openly and faithfully before the Lord or before a minister in Christ, you can’t expect the Lord to set your free. This pride will make you unable to receive help. It is like a mother delivering a child. There comes a time when nothing else matters. “Before honor is humility”, (Prov. 15:33 & 18:12).
This step to freedom is to really know you have fully committed your way to God through Jesus Christ. This is accomplished by receiving Jesus as Savior, Master, and God. It is absolutely necessary to submit your will totally to Jesus, for He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. There is no other way to get to the Father except by Jesus Christ. If You desire and need His help then you must join His Kingdom.
4. Water Baptism
As you come into being born again and experience the Love of Christ in your life, then you need to be baptized by immersion, which is the fourth step to freedom. You need to go down into the water and bury the “works of the flesh.” This is a sealing by the Holy Spirit, it is the death and burial of your sinful carnal nature and the resurrection of your new nature in Jesus Christ. You must come to recognize that your “old man” is dead to sin and that a totally new life emerges from the water in the glory and image and likeness of Jesus. There has to be a definite commitment to bury the old nature and the expectation of the resurrected new man in Christ.
5. Spirit Baptism
This step is to receive the gift of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit. This is the power of God to enable a Christian to joyfully live the Christian life. Jesus said in Acts 1 for the disciples to wait in Jerusalem until they were endued with power from God on high. Each one of us, that are willing to be obedient, has this experience waiting for us and we should ask for to have victory in our Christian walk and a holy boldness for ministry. There is a further study in this book on the Baptism in the Holy Spirit to help you receive God’s power.
6. House Cleaning
The next important step is that of a thorough housecleaning for purity of possessions. Housecleaning is to remove anything in your house that is ungodly, anything that brings back memories of ungodly situations; anything that you own or possess which would not glorify the Lord Jesus Christ; anything that you have that you would not want the Lord to see if He returned today. To be free these things will need to be destroyed or removed from your ownership and living control area. You are only responsible for the area in which you have total control. Some things you may give away as things which are neutral in themselves but bring you remembrances of past sinful situations. Any idols, tarot cards, ouija boards and any other demonically inspired works of art need to be destroyed and burned. Books on the occult, books promoting the false kingdoms of this world, things or books that are ungodly in any way at all, regardless of how valuable, need to be destroyed.
Step seven is the confession of all sin in your past life which may be blocking your spiritual growth. As you go back over your old life and memories, from the time you were born, you will feel areas in your spirit like a splinter under your skin where it is still sensitive; where there is still hate for someone, blame toward God or a hangover feeling of pain, these are the areas where you need to confess your sin and ask God for forgiveness through Jesus Christ. If you have stolen things, you need to repent to the owner, take things back or make restitution. Much bondage is buried under piles of hurt and pain. It needs to be brought to the surface and then buried in the sea of God’s forgetfulness. This is an important step to complete freedom.
The eighth step is forgiveness. Forgiveness of others for everything in the same depth as you desire the Heavenly Father to forgive you for everything you have ever done. You cannot hold bitterness toward God or anyone and be free. You not only must forgive others but sometimes the most difficult part is to forgive yourself. If you have trouble forgiving yourself, remember that God in Jesus Christ died for your sins and that He loves you with a lasting and eternal Love. If He finds reason to love you how can you fight against God? Make absolutely sure that you have no bitterness toward God, against yourself, or against others for anything. The blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sin, and we need to apply that sacrifice of His blood on the Cross in forgiveness in everything, (1 John 1:9 & Matt.6:12).
9. Sever Controls
Step nine is to renounce any and all ungodly control on your life, either present or past. There is a type of control that makes us perform or do things which we know in our heart is not right. Sometimes this control comes from people we love or hate very much. This could be a boyfriend/girlfriend, a parent or an employer. In our steps to freedom, you must renounce and disassociate yourself from any and all manipulative control that includes threat, bribe, shame, glory, fear, hate or flesh. The only motivation that God uses is loving influence for complete understanding. Anytime anyone exerts an ungodly control over you that is contrary to Jesus, you need to renounce the association by the blood of Jesus and refuse to obey it any longer. Many times our liberty in Jesus is destroyed because we submit ourselves to negative spiritual controls of people we love and hate. The fear which motivates us to obey ungodly controls must be broken to be fully free in Jesus. God’s standard for right living is found in scripture. He is bound by His word. He will never lead you to do something that is contrary to scripture or that Jesus would not do. Be very sure that your light is not really darkness.
10. Resist Satan
This last step is simply to resist the devil, to say NO! Use the blood of Jesus to get the demons off your back and out of your life, they will flee from you. Demons clearly have no power over you as you are in Jesus Christ, Rev.12:11. There is no authority greater than that of Jesus, The Christ. He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. You can enjoy great victory in life through these ten steps.
May the Lord bless you as you seek His freedom! For physical healing the Book of James is a wonderful little letter touching on important factors to be on holy ground for divine healing. My suggestion is, if you need physical healing, to do a book report on the “Book of James”, and follow the instructions.