Leon Fontaine - Freedom AND Responsibility
Rights and freedoms are not given by governments. Rights and freedoms were given by God. And all of the countries that have a biblical law background and that's where their legal system comes from. It's not Sharia Law. It's not law, you know, in other religions it started with the Ten Commandments and the laws. And that's where we get much of the first world from America, Canada, the EU. And all of these countries, their laws come from a biblical foundation. And written in many of these countries it says the very thing I'm saying now that freedom is not given by governments. Freedom was given by God for governments to protect and to maintain.
And so we need to be very aware of this look at freedom and an understanding of it. And the Bible says when you know truth, you will be free. You will walk freedom out. So whenever we don't know truth, we can be deceived out of freedom. We can want protection and lose freedoms. We can give away our freedoms without even realizing we are. So to understand freedoms, where they come from, what they are, and to understand the complexities that are there, it's so much easier for a government to be in charge and to decide what goes on because then you have much easier governance. But when you have a democracy, when you have freedom for people which the Bible brings out. There's a complexity to it because all of our freedoms rub against each other, and your freedom cannot impose on my freedom.
And so we have courts that will sit down and try to determine which freedom here preempts the other one. And so that's where law comes in and our courts come in. But Christians for some reason, as I get up and just try to announce the news or make some observations. There are so many Christians that are horrified that I would have a comment, and that I shouldn't as a pastor have a comment. I should put my brain on hold, just keep it religious and not look. But that's not what the Word of God teaches us. And so today we're going to study doctrine but we're also going to take a look at freedoms and what the Word of God says.
And, you know, people often ask me, "Well, you know what, we just should submit to whatever's going on because if it happens, it's God's will". That's called the sovereignty doctrine. And it just means its people believe if it happen, it's God. Ridiculous doctrine because then you're saying that Hitler was of God. Mao Zedong was of God. Stalin was of God. You're saying, so that they killed tens of millions of people. Those three men alone killed beyond a hundred million people on the planet, torturing the men, women, children, etcetera. Oh, it was God. It's just sometimes people don't think through their doctrines. They just hang on to three verses take them out of context.
And so what is God's will for countries? What is God's will for you? It is so simple. Jesus taught His disciples to pray the Lord's Prayer. Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth. Now if you're on earth, this is for you. If your family is on earth, this is for you. If your business is on earth, it's for you. If your country is on earth, this is for you. If your generations are going to be on earth, this is for you. What's His will? As it is in heaven. Then it goes on in Matthew 16 and Matthew 18, these chapters teaches us that we should stop what is not in heaven, bind it, and we should loose what is in heaven. It gives us such clear indications of God's will. We want to loose love and healing and health and blessing and protection.
All those things are in heaven. And there's no manipulation in heaven. We don't want men to feel manipulation. So it's just a stunning thing that Christians don't even understand this basic premise. And once you anchor yourself around these basic Christian truths, the rest begins to make sense. And if not, then we allow somebody who doesn't understand a Bible doctrine to twist and to move us in so many directions. Now, you will know the truth and the truth, Jesus said, will make you free. So therefore, we must know what truth is in God's Word first, but we also must know what truth is when it comes to every area of our lives. Government, family, home, love. And here's what a lot of people who follow the Bible do. They make the Bible this little sub-category of the planet. They hide behind their doors and they become a sub-class of human. They become religious. They begin to follow rules and so God wants them to, you know, make me happy by obeying these rules.
And so principles that were supposed to come into your heart, and then cause you to build great countries, great families, to be creative with arts and entertainment, to be able to understand health care. And He's the one that put the herbs in the ground that have medicines in them, etcetera. If we think this thing through, He said to Adam, "Have dominion and multiply". It means to succeed. And from there we find his kids building cities and art and entertainment and all the things that go on. God's not shocked going, "Oh, my, what are people doing? They were supposed to just sit in a lotus position and meditate on my Word". No. They're supposed to have families and marriages and multiply and raise up. And He was, He's not shocked at skyscrapers and gardens and the sciences. He gave it all to us.
And so freedom, you know, we often talks about rights and freedoms. And it's hard to differentiate what's a right and what's a freedom because they both overlap, but when you talk about rights and freedoms, I'm going to just start off by saying this. What are some examples of rights and freedoms? And when you take a look at the European Union and America, Canada. And we look at a lot of the, the rights and freedoms that are enshrined there in these countries. I'm going to go through this really fast:
It's the right to life. The right to live. The right to human dignity. The right to the integrity of the person. The right to freedom of speech, freedom from bondage and slavery, freedom of movement. The right to security. The right to privacy. The right to marry and to found a family. The right of thought, conscience, and religion. The freedom of information. The freedom of assembly and association. The freedom of choice. The freedom of arts and sciences. Economic freedom. The right to property. The right to non-discrimination, culture. The rights of the child. The rights of the elderly. The rights of persons with disabilities, democratic rights, presumption of innocence, and right of defense. Freedom from arbitrary detention. Freedom from unreasonable search and seizure. Rights against self-incrimination. And this is only a sampling. Only a sampling.
Now, some of these countries have some of these and others don't, very few countries around the world have this, this group. And the Bible has all of them in it. And a ton more of freedoms as He explains the human being, the human condition, and how to lead them. And so it's crucial that Christians speak up. If our entire countries are founded on biblical law principle. But we should speak, not speak up. We just sit in our little churches behind our walls. And I often think that people's beliefs often come from their fears which allows them to be inactive and not have to stick their head up. And have someone quote them, or talk about them. We must learn that the church must speak up. You must speak up. We must know who we are. We must know what God is trying to do. God is trying to move through His people to create a world so beautiful. That it's like whatever is in heaven is on this earth.
People, "This isn't heaven". Oh, we know because there's two kingdoms on this earth. There's a dark kingdom and a light kingdom. And they're always at odds till you get to heaven. And so living on this planet and getting what God desires. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven, is to not just present and not just to build but to protect and be a watchmen on the wall from the freedoms. People who get up and say, "Oh, don't say a thing just submit to leadership". I don't think they've ever been in countries where evil despots ruled. And there was no freedom for women and children and property and finances. And the just, the despair and the brokenness that goes on. They've lived in a land of freedom where someone else paid the price. And so we as a church need to be very aware of this.
So we must follow and understand God's Word and what freedom is, and now we've got understand next what love is. See, the Bible teaches us that God is love. And this love or this valuing of one another. If that's not in our society, then the rules that we have and the laws that we have, they won't work well anyway. Because where God is, if God is love and love is God. Love is patient. Love is kind. That's got to be in our, in our nation. Love isn't envious. It doesn't boast, brag, or strut. There's no arrogance in love. That's what God is. That's what He wants in the culture of our nation. It's never rude, crude, indecent. It's not self-absorbed. It's not easily upset. Love doesn't tally the wrongs. It doesn't celebrate injustice but truth. It loves truth. It loves the light. Love puts up with anything and everything that comes along. It trusts, hopes, endures no matter what.
Is that what goes on in social media? Is that what goes on when you have a difference of opinion with someone? Is that what goes on? No. And so we have the wrong culture. We have a culture of fear. And so no wonder that the church doing its job which is to bring this God to the world. And what Jesus has done to change their nature, to have them forgiven, and be all that they could be is so crucial. Where the church is not strong, freedom will not last. Why? Because you will find leaders coming in that will use the court systems against you. They'll use your freedoms against you. And it get so complex that people don't know what to do. Now, what is freedom? Well, freedom has three areas. First is spiritual freedom. It says in 2 Corinthians 3:17, "Now the Lord is that Spirit". Wherever you see the word God or Lord, you put in the word love.
Now, love is that Spirit and where the Spirit of the Lord is, love valuing people. There is freedom. There is liberty. And so the Spirit of the Lord shows us that real freedom, and I know a lot of people don't have that if they don't know Christ first. But it starts in your spirit as you have a nature of love, a nature of freedom when you become born again. And then how do you have your mind free? Well, I've seen people who were born again. They've got Christ on the inside but they've never retrain their mind. So that their mind and their emotions and their will enjoy the freedom that is within them. They're still living from an old paradigm, old training, when they weren't free. And then if you talk about spiritual freedom, soulish, mind, emotional freedom, thinking freedom, and then body freedom.
Well, you can't have physical freedom until the people around you think the same way you do. We'll be in agreement that their right to a travel doesn't override your right to ownership of property. I'm not going to get all the legal stuff because you can just wrap your head around. You can see the complexity yet the importance of us understanding freedom. So the church has a crucial role to present Jesus for everyone. And that as we bring this freedom to the world in Christ this spiritual freedom first. That it begins to move down into that soulish, mental realm, emotional realm, the will. And then it begins to move down as people begin to think alike. They can plan cities. They can plan provinces, states, nations. But if people don't think alike, then you'll have, you know, everything just a fight all the time.
We were created to be free. God created us that way. And all of the teaching of God's Word is to raise mankind up to know who they are. And so because Adam gave it away, Christ came back as the second Adam, and He won again our freedom. He won freedom in a way that we can't give it away anymore and have the world be destroyed like Adam did. We still have authority through Christ. But when Adam did something wrong, I mean, the whole earth suffered for it. And so mankind can't give away that freedom for the world. You can for yourself but no longer for everyone else. And so we were created to be free. We were created to have dominion. And when countries begin to tap into the teaching of the Word of God that get people free. That's when their gifts and abilities begin to rise up. That's when movies and theater and writing and oh, all, I mean, baking and cooking and, I mean, health care. It begins to explode. Why? Because all these gifts in people begin to rise up. But they can't rise up where they're dominated. Where they have no freedom. Where they have fear.
Fear, whenever you study creativity, you'll find that fear causes creativity to be just choked off. And so we need freedom to really begin to rise up with the freedom that God has given us. It's a different thing to lead free people than to lead people who are dominated. And much of the governments of the world in the history past, in order to control people, they had brutal rules in government because people were so hard to lead. So keep them censored, keep them in fear, and control them like cows, you know, just herd them somewhere but don't let them. But once people begin to be free, understand freedom, for their kids, their family. Understand financial freedom, understand the freedoms we talked about and many more. They rise up as free thinkers and they add to the collective ability to see and to learn and to know.
Why when you study history, which countries in the world is everybody trying to get to? Countries that have the Bible and the Ten Commandments as their foundation of law. And so it's crucial that we understand our rights and freedoms. Galatians 5:1 says, "Stand fast therefore in the freedom that you have been given and don't get entangled again with bondage". Christians need to know as we raise up great countries. We don't sit in our churches doing nothing. We are to be watchmen on the wall. We are to see where freedoms are being leached away. And we are to speak up because there is wisdom that has been given to us here. And so it says here stand fast in that freedom. It says, and don't be entangled again with any form of bondage. Most people don't see the bondage coming. They just say, "Well, really? You think that we're going in the wrong direction"?
Study history, study the Bible, and you'll see right away that we are given very clear indicators of how to continue to create and build with everybody else. James 1:25 says, "But if anyone keeps looking steadily into God's law for free men, he will not only remember it but he will do what it says, and God will greatly bless him in everything he does". Oh, so as Christians, as we learn the Word and we look into this the Word of God, which is for free men and women, okay? Then we get up and work and we do. We do careers and homes and families and romance and sex and all these things that you follow what He says.
How can you build, I mean, incredible things on this world? And as others do what they want to do, all that will happen is you'll just rise like the noon day sun. You'll just see that blessed means happy, fortunate, and to be envied. And so our life with God and the following of His guidelines in this living for Jesus Christ where freedom starts in the spirit, should make people just jealous and go, "I want to follow Him". But because Christianity in so many cases turned to religion and religion just sucks. It's caused everyone to go, "Go to church. Are you kidding me? Because that's just another way to be controlled. You're going to stop my freedom. You're going to tell me. You're going to judge me". No, we're not. The Bible says don't judge. In other words you don't have a right to judge someone else's freedom. Leave them with God and live your life.
And so as we know Jesus and we rise up and know who we are, our rights, our freedoms. As we recognize that this freedom is the only way that we can see the abilities and the giftedness of your children and your grandchildren rise up. If we do not speak up and peacefully get involved, our nation has designed multiple ways for the people to speak, to protest. It's legal. We designed it that way. The men at the very beginning of our nation designed it so that if government ever was going in wrong directions, our voices could be heard.
So when people, or the Christian, especially the Christian church goes, "Oh, we should never say a thing". We just blindly obey because they've got a few verses out of context. Well, would you please read the whole Bible so that we can get up. And we aren't here to be a curse to this world. We are the salt and light. We add flavor. We add longevity. Salt, when you cure food with salt, it last. We are what makes countries last is the truth of Jesus. And when we speak up with love and with wisdom, then we illuminate the darkness of what do we do when it comes to all the things that are going on, and the sciences and politics. The geo-political issues. The things going on around the world as, I mean, one nuclear missile can get anywhere on the planet from anyone of how many countries now. And the complexity of this planet is gonna gets greater and greater.
The only way is to understand freedom, to be very understanding of God's Word. So that everywhere we go, we know how to use our freedoms. Last thought. How do we use freedom? How do we use it? You see, freedoms and rights have duties and responsibilities. If you have freedoms and rights that you have not had duties and responsibilities to get someone else pay for it. Whatever question those duties. I mean, whatever question those rights and freedoms, somebody stood up. They might have stood up in parliament. They might have stood up on a battlefield. The World War I, World War II. I don't know. And how do we use this freedom that so many of us have just been given.
In the Galatians 5:13, "My brothers and sisters, God called you to be free, but do not use your freedom as an excuse to do what pleases your sinful self. Serve each other with this love, this freedom". The whole law is made complete in this one command. Love your neighbor as you love yourself. If you go on hurting each other and tearing each other apart. Be careful, or you will completely destroy each other. Where we are today, the world needs to understand. Stop creating fear. Stop dominating. Stop enforcing. And stop making it an issue that divides your marriage, your family, your home, your kids. And come back to the simplicity but the depth of the principles that made our country's great. And that is, that love. This valuing of one another and each other's rights, each other's freedoms. And then as we serve each other with a sense of my duty is to be a blessing to my fellowmen.
My responsibility is to help those around me not to retreat into my little rights and freedoms. Yes, it's important to know rights and freedoms. But the only way to get them and keep them will be the duties and responsibilities that come to us, to speak up, to get involved, to use our acumen, our abilities, our giftedness, our money, and all that we have to continue, that see that a nation will be strong because of real freedom. And then our kids have a chance with their giftedness and their abilities. And then we can go to our graves because we're all going to die at some point, knowing that we've done what we could for those gorgeous little grandkids and great grandkids and great, great grandkids of yours. That they won't look at you and go, "Man, I wish you spoken up back then because look at what my kids got to deal with now". I refuse to be quiet.