Editor’s Note: This song was previously submitted in the fifty-third edition of Psalm 100. In this post, Pastor Dan shares another perspective on this impactful song.
Pastor Daniel of EM’s Pick Of The Week
No Longer Slaves is a well known song written by Jonathan David Helser/Brian Joel Case/Mark Johnson who are songwriters for Bethel Music.And as you read the lyrics you cannot help but be touched by the words: no longer a slave to fear, for I am a child of God; you surround me with songs of deliverance; we’ve been liberated from our bondage. The words reach into our hearts and tug at our heart-strings the knowledge that we are loved by our Father for He has set us free. It sounds all too true, except when you look closer with a clearer eye and reach for the underlying meaning and what you find at closer scrutiny is that there is a word missing; or shall I say, an idea undergirding this freedom of bondage. What do you find? There is not one mention that our freedom from bondage is from sin- that our slavery is to fear but to sin; what shackles us and makes us bounded on all sides as a humanity is not fear but sin. Sin is the root that prevents us from the Father; separated us from His Love; and culminates in our destruction without the Son crucifying for those who believe Him by faith.
This is what the Jesus spoke in John’s Gospel: “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you” (John 14:15-17). According to Scripture, the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of truth. Whatever our knowledge and preconceptions concerning the Holy Spirit, He is the Spirit of truth. He does not just govern our passions and affections that make us feel alright and allows us to worship Him in the ambience of the spiritual experience. He confirms, affirms, and assures our knowledge of Christ with Scripture and grounds our experiences with the truth so that we do not become so easily moved by whatever lyrics may sound nice or soothing to us. This is why it is oh so utterly dangerous to our faith to not judge lyrics without some measure of scrutiny and realize it is our responsibility to hold singers and songwriters accountable about what they write. Fear is dangerous; fear prevents; fear makes us timid and inhibited. But fear is not our greatest enemy nor is it the reason that I was once was in bondage and a slave. No, my slavery was to sin and my bondage was to sin; Christ freed me and made my freedom from this bondage to sin so that I may pursue with all the gusto of a free man from Sin to my Christ.
Follow the Psalm 100 Spotify Playlist to listen to all of our picks!
Songs from this Past Lord’s Day
1. Build My Life – Housefires Ft. Pat Barrett
2. In Christ Alone – Keith and Krystn Getty
Offering: Worthy Is The Lamb – Hillsong Worship