Raised in Egypt
Liberation happens sometimes. In America in the early days some people were liberated. Yes, others were enslaved, but I would like to focus on people becoming free.
For a couple of hundred years we lived pretty free. Slowly but persistently enslavement has crept back in. A few years before the banking collapse which led to the bailout in 2008 I was in a real estate finance class. I got the sudden realization that owing the banks money for a home was the new serfdom. Banks got to keep a huge share of everyone’s wages.
Besides what the banks kept, the IRS naturally kept another huge share of everyone’s wages. Financially we lost what is the defining characteristic of a free people, which is being able to keep the wages for which one works.
In recent years, the rate at which we are losing freedoms seems to be progressing geometrically. We can no longer travel without papers; we can no longer speak freely without fear of recrimination; we cannot take our child for a pediatric doctor visit without having him or her inspected for potential “abuse” and are guilty until proven innocent in other settings such as airport security lines; we can only practice our religion without having it taxed by submitting to the government’s idea of the appropriate role for a church so the church is allowed a state charter, otherwise known as a 501c3.
We have surrendered many freedoms, most in trade for the [false] promise of security, and some in trade for the promise that we will be cared for (these are mostly related to the national health care initiative). We haven’t been directly asked if we wanted to surrender these freedoms, but our compliance has been taken as agreement. We are glad to comply because we are polite, pc people, right?
But compliance is the hallmark of a slave, and comes along with a slave mentality. Sometimes I would like to shout out “Do you really want to be a childish slave? Don’t you see what they are doing to you and your children?”
A slave mentality is tough to break. God has been trying to get us out of a slave mentality for a few thousand years. His biggest move was to send Jesus to the cross, thus making us legally free in the spirit realm. But taking the people of Israel out of Egypt was a pretty big one too.
They were suddenly free.
What would you do if you got up in the morning and realized that gravity no longer had a hold on you? Would you enjoy floating and learn to live a whole new life, or would you spend the rest of your life trying to craft a pair of boots that would weigh you down enough so you no longer floated?
Freedom can be like a loss of gravity. It’s awesome; it opens all sorts of new worlds and new possibilities. But something about the fallen nature of man drives us to seek the old and prefer the pull of gravity.
When Israel left Egypt the people were free in body, but perhaps not so free in soul. They were used to being taken care of. All they had to do was work at their slave jobs, and the rest was provided for them. They had no decisions to make when they got up in the morning. They knew where they were going, how long they would be there, and what they would be doing: all day, everyday, because these things were mandated. This is slavery. There is a measure of security, but at the price of losing self-determination: freedom.
In the wilderness the people of Israel felt the loss of that security. They behaved like children every time there was some lack. I’m not sure if God was more angry or more disappointed.
I suppose He could be angry with us for preferring to behave and be treated as children–or slaves–than as free people. Except that He doesn’t get angry with us anymore, because all His anger was taken out on Jesus.
Live free so that was not in vain