Text: Romans 6:20-23 “When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the obligation to do right. 21 And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom. 22 But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.” (NLT)
Subject: Human Freedom
Specific Intent: To compare the two dynamic paths that find their end at two dynamic destinations that result from Human Freedom.
“Do Your Thing” Lyrics as made popular by Isaac Hayes
If the music make you move,
’cause you can really groove
Then groove on, groove on
If you feel like you wanna make love
Under the stars above
Love on, love on
If theres something you wanna say,
And talkin is the only way
Rap on, oh, rap on
‘Cause whatever you do,
Oh, you’ve got to do your thing
If you feel like you wanna scream
‘Cause thats your way of lettin off steam
Scream on, scream on
If you feel like you wanna sing
‘Cause singing is your thing
Sing on, sing on
If you wanna make love all night
And you feel it’s right
Right on, right on
‘Cause whatever you do, oh,
You’ve got to do your thing
Do your thing…
The late, soul balladeer and “R&B” great Isaac Hayes produced “Do Your Thing” in 1972. When you analyze the lyrics of the song you will discover a message that defines the decade of the 60’s and early 70’s. The message describes the social, spiritual, and cultural milieu of human freedom.
One person said that the phrase is a “declaration of independence.” “I can do my own thing.”
During the 1960’s freedom defined that era in American history. For those of us who live in that era we are drawn to think about civil rights, women’s rights and protest against the Vietnam War that dominated the media.
Just like in the 1960’s that produced a saying like “Do your thing,” when we go back to the 1st century when the New Testament came into existence there were similar phrases that people used in their day. And when you read the Bible you have to take into account the existence of such expressions that define the social and cultural atmosphere of each biblical writer.
Well, what was the self proclaimed black Moses singing about that even today is a casual expression that people might use without even knowing what they are saying?
The expression describes “human freedom.” Man’s quest to be free to work out his or her own salvation. Without restraints. Sometimes without thought. The ability to choose for themselves their own direction in life’s pursuits. To do whatever pleases the flesh.
Let us now turn to our passage. In the previous chapters of Romans Paul spoke about two masters. Jesus said that you cannot serve both at the same time. This line of thought continues with the idea that we are slaves of sin or of righteousness. Paul then seems to bring this together with the notion of two paths and two destinations.
In Paul’s comparative sequence we are informed as readers that we have the human freedom or free will to choose our master, our path and ultimately our destination.
You possess the God given right to “do your thing.”
And basically when you think about it–when a person declares their independence from God, and chooses to live a life apart from God, they have exercised their free will to do so. They are “doing their thing.” There “own thing.”
Once again from a working definition “Human Freedom” simply put is, “that “you” and “I” have been given the “free will” to “choose” the path for good or evil. And that God will not interfere with our choices. God will not force you to choose the path for Him.”
Consequently, and sadly, our choices determine the outcome of human life for good or bad. For success or failure. And let me stop here and make this plain. Success or failure is not determined by the status or material wealth you may gain. Success or failure is determined by your relationship to God. This is why Jesus said, “25 vFor what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?” (Luke 9:25)
Let’s make it real. Our choices have lifetime and eternal consequences.
You have the right to go out and chain yourself to a railway in front of an ongoing locomotive. But God will not perform a miracle and prevent you from being killed. You have the right to go out and get smacked with crack cocaine in a crack house and spend a lifetime living on crack. God will not get in your way. You can choose the occupation of being a pimp and end up taken from your mother’s house and later to be found stuffed in a septic tank dead. God will not interfere. You can do your thing as my neighbor did. You can choose to be an atheist, a thief, a sexual addicted predator, a habitual liar, and yes, God will not interfere with your choice. With these aberrations the devil has invented you will notice that they all have a payday.
You will notice something in the aforementioned short list. Society is filled with constant reminders of “don’t touch that.” Our alleys and streets speckle our community with dead-ends. People who line the corners as “dead ends” who chose wrongly when they exercised their free will to “Do their own thing.”
Paul illustrates in our text the only two paths you can choose. These paths are dynamic paths that end in two opposite destinations for all humans on this planet. These paths will be discussed next week in “Do Your Thing” Part II.
~Ministerial Contributor to This Blog
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