“So when your son asks you in times to come, ‘What is this?’ say to him, ‘By a strong hand Adonai brought us out from Egypt, the house of bondage’” (Exodus 13:14).
Living in freedom as we do, it’s hard to imagine being enslaved, having no opportunity for a different life. For generation upon generation, Israelites in Egypt were servants of cruel masters and without hope. Born slaves, they died slaves.
Today, during a traditional Passover Seder, a child asks, “Why is this night different from all other nights?” Part of the answer states, “If God had not brought us out, we would still be slaves today in Egypt.”
What a sobering thought. But God heard the cries and saw the suffering of the people of Israel. He intervened and changed everything. God did the impossible – He broke the shackles of bondage and saved the people from slavery.
Like God rescued the Israelites from Egypt, Jesus came to save us – from slavery to sin. We had no power to free ourselves, and before we placed our faith in Jesus, we were without hope. We were born slaves to sin, and if not for Jesus, we would also die as slaves to sin.
Jesus’ name in Hebrew – Yeshua – means “salvation,” and He came to save us from sin. We are no longer slaves to sin. Sin doesn’t own us. God redeemed us out of bondage.
Paul and Peter remind us that we are slaves to whom we obey, and we are set free to obey God rather than sin. Whenever we feel stuck in a sinful habit, we can know that we have the Holy Spirit’s power inside us, enabling us to choose God over sin.
Passover is a holiday of remembrance. As we remember how God saved the Israelites from their bondage, we do well to remember whose servants we now are. We no longer serve sin. We are rescued from its mastery over us.
“But now, having been set free from sin and having become enslaved to God, you have your fruit resulting in holiness. And the outcome is eternal life” (Romans 6:22).
Exodus 3:7, Exodus 13: 3, Psalm 102:19–20, Matthew 1:21, Romans 5:12, 2 Peter 2:19, Romans 6:6, 16–17
Think back to before you placed your faith in Jesus. What trajectory do you think your life would have taken if Jesus had not delivered you from sin’s mastery?
Spend some time meditating on your present struggles or temptations, and ask God to show you where you may have let a defeated mindset settle in to make you believe the sin is too big or too longstanding to uproot.
How would you look at that sin differently if you fully grasped that it is not your master, that you are not its slave anymore?