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Free (1658) (eleutheros) (See related verb eleutheroo) is an adjective which means freedom to go wherever one likes, at liberty, possessing the capability of movement, exempt from restraint, obligation or liability, unconstrained, unfettered. In the Greek culture this word pictured one who can go wherever they please) (from Homer down). For example, in one secular writing we find this statement "the temple of Artemis at Ephesus is open (free) to all". The opposite idea of eleutheros is that which depicts or characterizes a state of enslavement. Chuck Swindoll has an excellent illustration of the meaning of the verb eleutheros.... Back in the nineteenth century our sixteenth president realized something radical must be done about slavery in our country. Unwilling to look the other way any longer, on September 22, 1862, he presented what came to be known as the Emancipation Proclamation, an official document condemning human slavery. Abraham Lincoln, realizing that slavery is completely against human dignity, officially abolished it from the United States on that day. Tragically, little changed in the daily life of our nation, even though the slaves were officially declared free. You know why; you’ve read the stories. The Civil War was still going on. The plantation owners never informed their slaves. The vast majority of the former slaves couldn’t read, so they had no idea what the news was carrying. There was no mass media then to announce those kinds of presidential pronouncements. And so for the longest time, slavery continued even though it had been officially brought to an end. The war ended in April 1865. Do you know when Lincoln’s declaration was officially enacted? When the people finally began to leave their enslaved lives and make their way toward freedom? December 18, 1865—more than three years after he first released his proclamation. Lincoln had been dead for months. The word traveled out of the streets of Washington and down into the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, across the back roads of the Carolinas and into Georgia, then Alabama, then Mississippi, then Louisiana, then Texas, then Arkansas, announcing what had been true for more than a thousand days. Even then the word somehow either wasn’t believed or wasn’t acted upon. Those officially emancipated people, thinking slavery was the way they were condemned to exist, continued to live in bondage though they had been declared free men and women since the fall of 1862. (Embraced by the Spirit The Untold Blessings of Intimacy with God) BDAG (ref) gives two primary meanings for eleutheros as (1) pert. to being free socially and politically, free and (2) pertaining to being free from control or obligation, independent, not bound (1Co 9:1, Ro 6:20, 7:3). Zodhiates adds that eleutheros describes "One who is not dependent upon another, for the most part in a social and political sense. In a relative sense, free, separate from or independent of (Ro 7:3; 1 Cor. 9:19)." (Ref) Eleutheros is used of literal freedom from slavery (1Co 7:21) and of literal freedom as one who is not a slave (1Co 7:22, 1Co 12:13, Re 6:15, 13:16, 19:18, Ep 6:8, Col 3:11). Here in Romans 7:3, Paul uses eleutheros of the death of a spouse bringing freedom from the laws governing marriage. More often we find eleutheros used figuratively speaking of spiritual freedom (Jn 8:33, 36, 1Co 9:1, 19), as from enslavement to sin (Ro 6:20) or the yoke of the law (Ro 7:3). Peter teaches that spiritual freedom does not connote the freedom to do as we please (lawless) but to do as we should (obedience, pleasing God, 1Pe 2:16). As Schlier writes Faced with a lost existence, we can come to ourselves only by subjecting our own will to the will of another. We achieve self-control by letting ourselves be controlled (Ed: cp Ep 5:18-note). (Kittel, G., Friedrich, G., & Bromiley, G. W. Theological Dictionary of the New Testament. Eerdmans) The related verb eleutheroo (the ending " -oo" means not only will it be set free but it will be seen as set free) means to cause someone to be freed from domination. The picture is that of the emancipation of slaves. The idea is that the one set free is at liberty, capable of movement, exempt from obligation or liability, and unfettered. Although the act of setting free results in freedom and liberty we must understand that this new freedom is not a license to sin. In fact true liberty for the believer is now living as we should and not as we please. Along this same line, note the paradox in 1Co 7:22 of the free person who is a slave! Praise God that believers serve such a perfect Master. Eleutheros is used 23x in 23v in the NT... Matthew 17:26 And upon his saying, "From strangers," Jesus said to him, "Consequently the sons are exempt. (in context free from tax from kings of the earth Mt 17:25) John 8:33 They answered Him, "We are Abraham's offspring, and have never yet been enslaved to anyone; how is it that You say, 'You shall become free '?" John 8:36 "If therefore the Son shall make you free (eleutheroo), you shall be free indeed. (Comment: What a great truth. I would strongly encourage you to memorize it and to meditate on what Jesus is saying, and to ask the Spirit of Christ to make this truth a practical reality in your life, especially if you are "struggling" with a particular besetting sin. This great promise is "Yea and Amen in Christ"!) Romans 6:20-note For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. Romans 7:3-note So then if, while her husband is living, she is joined to another man, she shall be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from the law, so that she is not an adulteress, though she is joined to another man. 1 Cor 7:21 Were you called while a slave? Do not worry about it; but if you are able also to become free, rather do that. 1 Cor 7:22 For he who was called in the Lord while a slave, is the Lord's freedman; likewise he who was called while free, is Christ's slave. 1 Cor 7:39 A wife is bound as long as her husband lives; but if her husband is dead, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord. 1 Cor 9:1 Am I not free? Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord? Are you not my work in the Lord? 1 Cor 9:19 For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a slave to all, that I might win the more. 1 Corinthians 12:13 For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit. Galatians 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Gal 4:22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the bondwoman and one by the free woman. Gal 4:23 But the son by the bondwoman was born according to the flesh, and the son by the free woman through the promise. Gal 4:26 But the Jerusalem above is free; she is our mother. Gal 4:30 But what does the Scripture say? "Cast out the bondwoman and her son, For the son of the bondwoman shall not be an heir with the son of the free woman." Gal 4:31 So then, brethren, we are not children of a bondwoman, but of the free woman. Ephesians 6:8-note knowing that whatever good thing each one does, this he will receive back from the Lord, whether slave or free. Colossians 3:11-note -- a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all. 1Peter 2:16-note Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God. Revelation 6:15-note And the kings of the earth and the great men and the commanders and the rich and the strong and every slave and free man, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains; Revelation 13:16-note And he causes all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free men and the slaves, to be given a mark on their right hand, or on their forehead, Revelation 19:18-note in order that you may eat the flesh of kings and the flesh of commanders and the flesh of mighty men and the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them and the flesh of all men, both free men and slaves, and small and great." Eleutheros is used 18 times in the non-apocryphal Septuagint (LXX) - Ex 21:2, 5, 26, 27; Deut. 15:12, 13, 18; 14" class="scriptRef">21:14; 1Ki. 21:8, 11; Neh. 13:17; Job 39:5; Ps. 88:4; Eccl. 10:17; Jer. 29:2; 34:9, 14, 16, all these uses speaking in the context of literal freedom, as illustrated by this passage... Deuteronomy 15:12 "If your kinsman, a Hebrew man or woman, is sold to you, then he shall serve you six years, but in the seventh year you shall set him free. TDNT (abridged) informs us of the concept of freedom politically and philosophically... A. The Political Concept of Freedom in the Greek World. By definition, freedom means self-disposing in independence of others. 1. This sense is partly fashioned by the contrast to slavery. Slaves belong to others, not themselves. Slavery is accepted as an institution; hence freedom arises both theoretically and practically only for those who are politically free. It is the freedom of the politeía as an association of the free. 2. Freedom, for Plato and Aristotle, is essential to a state. The best constitution guarantees the greatest freedom (Thucydides). This freedom is freedom within the law, which establishes and secures it. As an embodiment of the claim of the politeía, law protects freedom against the caprice of the tyrant or the mass. But freedom means alternation of government as free people both rule and are subjects. Democracy achieves this best by allowing the same rights to all citizens (cf. Plato, Aristotle, Herodotus). It implies equality of voice, honor, dignity, and power. It comes vividly to expression in freedom of speech. As Demosthenes says, there is no greater misfortune for free citizens than to lose this. Yet the concept of freedom in Attic democracy contains the seeds of its own decay, for by promoting individual development it undermines the law on which it rests. Freedom becomes the freedom to do as one likes. The law of the self replaces the law of the politeía. Plato perceives this clearly (Laws 3.701b/c). It leads to the rise of demagogues and opens the door to tyranny. 3. Freedom also has to be secured against external foes. It means independence and hence the defense of the politeía against “barbarians.” eleuthería can thus be a general expression for the autonomy of the state. At a later stage it becomes a slogan for the common “freedom” of the states which the individual states all claim to champion even in their inner struggles. In this regard it is hardly distinguishable from autonomía. B. The Philosophical Concept of Freedom in Hellenism (Stoicism). 1. In Hellenism, and especially Stoicism, the extolling of freedom increases. The true Cynic prefers freedom to all else. He persistently criticizes tyrants and bewails their fear and misery, which make them slaves too. He also attacks their courtier-parasites. 2. Freedom, however, is now much more than political freedom. It is that of the individual under the law of nature. This is regarded as a reversion to the original meaning. The formal sense is the same, but freedom now takes the form of independent self-determination (Ed: This is a good description of unsaved men and women). To find freedom we must explore our nature. We cannot control body, family, property, etc., but we do control the soul (Ed: The deception of philosophy!). External things seek to impose a false reality on us. Hence we have to withdraw from them in a restriction of desires and an abandonment to pressures. This might seem to bring bondage but in fact results in liberation. For true liberation of this kind, there has to be liberation from the passions that represent the world in us (Ed: Something only found in Christ, Jn 8:36). In particular, we must be rid of the dominant fear of death (Ed: Impossible for all outside of Christ!). We find freedom as we neutralize passions and surrender to the ineluctable power of circumstances (Ed: In truth as the believer surrenders to the Spirit of Christ, cp Gal 5:16-note). That this freedom can seldom be fully attained is recognized. Its fruit is assurance of soul (Ed: Again, impossible outside of a saving knowledge of Christ, cp 1Jn 5:12, 13). Those who seek flight in inwardness enjoy the freedom of impassibility and in so doing fulfil what they are as parts of God, or children of God, or God himself (Ed: As we see in the deadly deceptive teachings of the modern New Age movement, a return to the ancient lie regarding "spirituality" that "You can be like God" - Ge 3:4, 5!). (Kittel, G., Friedrich, G., & Bromiley, G. W. Theological Dictionary of the New Testament. Eerdmans) From (575) (apo) is a marker of dissociation, implying a rupture from a former association and thus a cessation or completion, reversal. It describes any separation of one thing from another by which the union or fellowship of the two is destroyed. To illustrate the binding character of the law, Paul presents the case of a woman who is married to a husband and remains bound by law in this relationship as long as the husband is living. During this time she is not free to seek another attachment. This may be done only in the event that the husband dies. By design, the status of the wife as subject to the husband is presented by the term hupandros, a rather rare word meaning literally "under a husband." This pictures more readily than "married woman" what Paul is seeking to bring out. Particularly in Jewish life this was the actual legal status of the wife, for she could not divorce her husband; divorce was a privilege granted only to the man. If the husband died, she was then released from "the law of marriage" (literally, "the law of the husband"). This may sound as though the husband instituted the marriage law, but this is not the idea intended. Ironside notes that... In the same way (as the wife's husband's death freed her), death has ended the relationship of the believer to the law, not the death of the law but our death with Christ, which has brought the old order to an end. We are now free to be married to another, even to the risen Christ in order that we might bring forth fruit to God...Death has dissolved the former relationship, and the one who once looked to the law for fruit now looks to the risen Christ. As the heart is occupied with Him, spiritual fruit is produced in the life in which God delights. (Romans Commentary) (See Ro 7:4, 5, 6-notes) SO THAT SHE IS NOT AN ADULTERESS THOUGH SHE IS JOINED TO ANOTHER MAN: tou me einai (PAN) auten moichalida genomenen (AMPFSA) andri hetero: (Ru 2:13; 1Sa 25:39, 40, 41, 42; 1Ti 5:11, 12, 13, 14) So that - This phrase (991x in NAS95) introduces a purpose clause and begs the question "What is the purpose?" and "How is this purpose achieved?" which will usually force you to examine the context. Adulteress (3428) (moichalis from moichos = "married & impure") Joined (1096) (ginomai) means to cause to become or to come into existence. This verse therefore reads more literally "having become another man's". Barnes writes... As the woman that is freed from the law of her husband by his death, when married again comes under the authority of another, so we who are made free from the law and its curse by the death of Christ, are brought under the new law of fidelity and obedience to him with whom we are thus united. The union of Christ and his people is not infrequently illustrated by the most tender of all earthly connexions--that of a husband and wife, Eph 5:23-30; Re 21:9, "I will show thee the bride, the Lamb's wife;" Re 19:7. (Albert Barnes. Barnes NT Commentary).

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