So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him. The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance. Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. “Quick, get up!” he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists. Then the angel said to him, “Put on your clothes and sandals.” And Peter did so. “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me,” the angel told him. Peter followed him out of the prison, but he had no idea that what the angel was doing was really happening; he thought he was seeing a vision. They passed the first and second guards and came to the iron gate leading to the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left him. Then Peter came to himself and said, “Now I know without a doubt that the Lord has sent his angel and rescued me from Herod’s clutches and from everything the Jewish people were hoping would happen.” —Acts 12:5-11

Peter was rescued and set free from Herod’s intentions of executing him. Satan was working through Herod seeking to destroy Peter and take him out of the spiritual warfare. But, the Lord still had purpose and plan for Peter. His race was not concluded and the Lord release Peter to accomplish His desires.

Previously Peter had experience being released from a greater bondage to a greater freedom. He had “escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken (him) captive to do his will” (II Timothy 2:26). Jesus had told Peter that “You must follow me” (John 21:22) and Peter did right up to his martyr’s death.

Today is the Fourth of July and a time that was set aside to celebrate our nation’s freedom. But a nation is not really free without the One who brings freedom. John Adam’s said, “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious People. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” So many people watched fireworks last night, and will today, how many are in a bondage much greater than the prison that Peter was in? Well, the majority for sure.

Only in being a disciple of Jesus is one truly “set free.” It is a freedom greater that being set from a physical prison. It is a greater freedom that living in a “free country.” Not knowing Jesus is an eternal bondage. But it is Jesus who truly sets us free (John 8:31-32). May you know that freedom! If not, call on Jesus today (Romans 10:13) and there will be something far greater than fireworks. Heaven will rejoice! (Luke 15:7).

Thank You my Father for the freedom You have given me through Your Son. Now may I live that life of freedom in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus.

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