Overcoming obstacles grants freedom

Freedom and fear cannot go hand in hand. It is unrealistic for any person to talk of freedom when still obsessed with fear. The greatest of all obstacles is the physical body, itself, as threatened by many obstacles, including attacks from other fellow humans. Currently, there is Corona Virus, and many unforeseen, or unpredictable diseases. Engaging in hard work signifies a lack of freedom.

Freed persons are no longer obsessed with concern for survival, limited only to physical entities. Predatory animals cause suffering on other species, while also facing unexpected challenges from their own rivals. There is no physical entity that is not faced with opposition to its own survival.

Humans are not excluded from the realities of physical challenges when surviving in physical conditions. The most terrifying experience of physical challenges is death, which is a uniting factor for all humans. As not discriminatory, death is the only predictable denominator among all humans.

Nevertheless, the purpose of Jesus is to grant freedom to humanity. Jesus said He came so that humanity might have life, and have it abundantly. That means after receiving Jesus, a person ceases to be tormented by physical challenges. This includes freedom from death, as succinctly clarified by Paul:

“I declare to you, brothers and sisters, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed—in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: ‘Death has been swallowed up in victory.’ ‘Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?’ The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Corinthians 15:50-56 NIV).

Life is characterized in dichotomies. The first human reality is described in physical existence, whose nature carries unlimited concerns. This is based on desiring security, against death. Succumbing to death is the opposite of survival. Nevertheless, there is an existence, arrived at by overcoming the physical condition, eradicating all forms of concerns for survival.

After having been freed from physical conditions, the person carries no reason to remain in physical nature. This is because physical nature keeps a person concerned about his current and future survival.

Nevertheless, spiritual survival is more real than physical survival. The state of being in the spiritual existence removes all manner of fear, as known to grip humanity and animal species. Suffice to say human beings were never created to be part of the physical universe, with such concerns.

The concerns, gripping those living in the flesh, have got nothing to do with the original condition of humanity. However, there is truth in that humans were subjected to the state of slavery, necessitating such concerns. The purpose of Jesus is to extricate humanity from such slavery, restoring liberties, with which humans were created.

“For this reason, I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” (1 Timothy 1:6-7 NIV).

Accessing God’s Spirit requires repentance from all desires of the flesh, leading to death. Unfortunately, anything of value gets subjected to fake pretenders. God’s word is a target by charlatans. Like everyone else, charlatans require protection from all fears, induced by physical existence.

Examining the Spiritual temperature is possible by measuring the state of fear, one has, for physical existence. Fearing death, for instance, implies having not yet acquired Spiritual freedom. Having eradicated fear, a person would have accessed freedom.

The only reason thieves and criminals exist, in this world, is a concern for physical survival. Criminals are not different from those holding professional qualifications, but unable to resist concerns for physical survival. Consider a medical doctor, charging exorbitant fees, for instance. Many patients die, due to the inability to access funding for medical care.

Medical doctors allow such deaths, rather than offering free medical services. This is acceptable, in a world of corruption. The reason is that medical doctors feel insecure, without funding. They require accumulating as much money as possible, to avoid being incapacitated. The focal point is on their own personal survival, more than the survival of others.

The drive towards self-protection is caused by consciousness for physical existence. It is impossible for a person consciously surviving in the physical world to think of benefiting other people, more than self. This is why political criminals dupe the naïve populace, with unachievable promises. They desire to access government funding, from which to steal.

Interestingly, the administrators of organized charitable institutions, benefit more than the intended beneficiaries. The lifestyles of those working for charitable organizations tells it all. Of course, their remunerations are pegged according to existing standards, which are guided by concerns for physical, rather than spiritual survival.

It is impossible for any person without spiritual freedom, to ever claim to be free. Pastoral services in Christianity is also not different from those sustained in physical survival. Such pastors are not different from criminals, baying for opportunities to loot, for survival. Hence Jesus exposed them:

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’” (Matthew 7:21-23 NIV).

Those classified as evildoers would have commendably done great things for the benefit of others. That would be acceptable, as far as this world of corruption is concerned. Unfortunately, evildoers focus on benefiting self, when performing kindly acts. What’s there for me? That would be the basic question for such apparent charitable individuals. Hence, they get rewarded, handsomely.

They are just as imprisoned in physical nature as blatant criminals in custodial institutions. Salaries and wages are also designed for those in slavery, whose architect is Satan. Humans were subjected to slavery, from the fruit of a tree that God had instructed Adam and Eve to avoid. This is how self-concern, first originated.

To Adam, he said, “Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat from it,’ “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil, you will eat food from it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow, you will eat your food until you return to the ground since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust, you will return.” (Genesis 3:17-19 NIV).

The above scripture is commonly used to justify the necessity for hard work. But this justifies human slavery that Jesus sought to redeem humanity from. A freed person ceases to be concerned about material things. He may still be in the physical body, but having ceased to be bothered by such things, as to crave for food consumption.

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (Matthew 6:25-26 NIV).

This instruction is not directed at those still hooked on physical slavery. Jesus was referring to those having left everything to follow Him. Such people are not, necessarily, those blaming God for not providing for their survival needs. These are free people, not craving for food, more than Spiritual necessities.

As long as one still exists in the physical nature, one needs food and other supply services. It is through that reasoning that many Christians get defeated. They would be disconnected from God. The modus operandi for those of this world is catering for self, before catering for others.

God’s people are preoccupied with activities that have got nothing to do with personal survival. Their business is detached from profit accumulation. They are God’s instruments, serving to please God, more than satisfying worldly viewpoints. This is just as patriarch Noah’s preoccupation with the Ark building, could not be understood by ordinary people of his time.

Most people assume that wealth acquisition grants freedom. This is what drives most people to engage in corruption. The accumulation of wealth appears as granting freedom. But, whatever is obtained without natural laws of exchange, provides more stress than when surviving frugally. Poor people are happier and freer than those surviving on stolen wealth.

Freedom is of the spirit, more than it can be of the flesh that desires to avoid pain. In flesh, there is anxiety and fear of being attacked. Even though surrounded by bodyguards, and all other forms of security, it is impossible to be 100% certain of the desired security. Some presidents have been killed by their own bodyguards. Our own president, Robert Mugabe, was toppled from power, by his right-hand man.

Robert Mugabe accessed the state of the art medical attention from Singapore. But some of his contemporary age-mate countrymen, unable to access least basic medical necessities, outlived him, in terms of longevity. There cannot be any security measure to guarantee physical survival.

Everything points to the aspect of physical health, remaining as the only unbeatable obstacle in the physical universe. It is impossible, even after acquiring sufficient money, to protect one’s own health. This is buttressed by the fact that it is impossible to be totally secure, in the physical nature.

This is notwithstanding that rich people would be admired by the equally insecure people in their poverty condition. It takes only those in the state of freedom, although appearing as existing in poverty, to enjoy the state of total freedom. Such people are not even afraid of death, where others tremble, at hearing of impending death.

What is freedom and how can it be achieved? Kings, in their monarchial attires, would be willing to pay trillions to attain total freedom. The only unfortunate thing is that they would not be aware that attaining freedom is as easy as reversing their attitude towards life. Instead of putting too much concern for their own welfare, they would need to focus on other people’s welfare. There are various other benefits coming with caring for others.

Those people that the person treats as self, tend to adopt a reciprocal attitude towards the benefactor. Whatever the treatment one gives to others, one gets the reverse treatment from them. This is a basic axiom that the entire world, in general, has avoided, throughout the ages.

It carries the value that succeeds the person’s existence in this physical life. These are people who continue influencing others, even though having passed on in life. They continue to be celebrated, even though no longer physically viewed. The greatest champion of living that kind of life is Jesus Christ, worshipped by ordinary people.

Jesus pioneered this way of life. But He also assured humanity that there was life after death. The life of sacrifice appears problematic to ignorant people, but it is the only worthwhile life that provides real freedom, even on this planet. The rest is fictitious.

The sacrificial life answers the question of whether other people feel glad that one lives, or not. To remain in bondage, the only formula is to disregard other people and concentrate on providing for self. This behaviour answers the question as to whether one receives as much from other people, for his own welfare.

The principle of applying either of these dichotomies is as simple as applying either of them, without reservations, and reaping the benefits, accordingly. There is a way to freedom, just as there is a way to slavery. The way to freedom is serving others, while the obsession with concerns for own survival, provides slavery, towards death.

Andrew Masuku is the author of Dimensions of a New Civilization, laying down standards for uplifting Zimbabwe from the current state of economic depression into a model for other nations worldwide. A decaying tree provides an opportunity for a blossoming sprout. Written from a Christian perspective, the book is a product of inspiration, bringing relief to those having witnessed the strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social decay. In a simple conversational tone, most Zimbabweans should find the book as a long-awaited providential oasis of hope.

The Print copy is now available at Amazon.com for $13.99

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