St Andrew Lutheran Church    
    4420 Center Point NE 
    Cedar Rapids, IA 52402
    (319) 393-4021
July 5, 2015
     "Then Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, "If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free."
John 8:31-32
     It's July in America, and for a week or more on each side of Independence Day, you might say it's been all about freedom.  As we claim personal and national freedoms as our birthright, we remember and honor that small group of courageous individuals who signed the Declaration of Independence.  In this document, they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor to the cause they had determined was right and just for those they represented.  Reading it today, it's apparent how well it still expresses the timeless concepts of justice, fairness, and the rights of all humans.

      The concept of personal and communal freedom is far from recent.  While the Declaration of Independence addresses political and economic, as well as individual, freedoms, we can turn to the Bible for true definitions and understandings of freedom.  As Jesus began his ministry and was preaching, teaching, and healing throughout the country, he spoke of a radically different relationship between God and humans.  He taught that God was a loving Father, who had sent him to free them from the unyielding laws of the Old Testament, to proclaim a new message of forgiveness, mercy, and eternal life.  In the quote from the Gospel of John, Jesus is calling himself the truth, as he also does in John 14:6 and 18:37.  If you read it with that in mind, Jesus is saying, "you will know me, and I will make you free." 

     Whether we think of freedom in terms of how Jesus taught and practiced it, or in relation to the more recent historic events of our own country, there is definitely commonality.  Our freedom as Christians gives us the opportunity to lead lives of service, sharing the good news that all people need to hear, and to care for those in need in Christ's name.  Our freedoms as citizens of our country carry responsibilities as well, as we find ways of working together, and creating opportunities for all to be free indeed.
Your friend in Christ,
Mary Rogers

Worship Times
Holy Communion
  Saturday 5:30 pm
  Sunday 9:30 am

Join your Church friends after service on Sunday's for fellowship and treats!!!! 
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