When people talk about freedom it is usually about freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom to travel (where ever you want) or not being imprisoned; maybe about financial freedom – thinking that enough money would grant one the freedom to fulfill all the wishes one might have. Along this line is the Wikipedia definition of freedom that says: “Freedom is the power or right to do as one wants.”

But these are all outward aspects of freedom; a kind of freedom that is defined by the circumstances around us. What is about the freedom within us? Is it possible that one is doing exactly what he wants to do but is still not free because he is bound by destructive desires within himself? One could easily see this in a drug addict who would like to get rid of his addiction but can’t. But there are many more boundaries within than just drug addiction:

Some people can’t control their food consumption. Others can’t pass a clothing store without having to buy new clothes. Others are controlled by their sexual desires. Still others can’t control their tongue and spend a day without gossiping about others. The list could go on without end. If now one who can’t withstand buying new clothes everyday states he is free because he has all the money in the world to do so – is he really free or in fact just fooling himself? Isn’t the freedom within ourselves much more important than outward freedom? Could it be that the one who is suffering a lack of outward freedom due to persecution or imprisonment, and yet is at peace with his Creator, is indeed freer than the people in the freest or richest countries who are bound by their inner desires? Isn’t all of this captured in the words of Jesus: “He who sins is a slave of sin?”