Follow Jesus Fully
traded the biblical gospel
for an American gospel--so says pastor and author David Platt.
On Chris Fabry Live, see if you agree with his premise that
the American gospel has hijacked our hearts.
Instead of exalting Jesus, we have
exalted comfort, power, politics
What’s the antidote? Find out on Chris Fabry Live.
David Platt is the author of anew book
Don’t Hold Back:
Leaving Behind the American Gospel
to Follow Jesus
and three New York Times bestsellers, including Radical. He is a pastor in metro Washington, D.C., and founder of Radical Inc., an organization that equips Christians to be on mission from where they
live to the ends of the earth.
David received his master of divinity (M.Div.), master of theology (Th.M.), and doctor of philosophy (Ph.D.) from
New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.
He has been featured in such outlets as The New York Times, Christianity Today, and The Gospel Coalition. David lives in metro D.C.
with his wife and their children.
“The truth will set you free”
is a common saying in
that want to promote academic freedom
power of learning.
Many universities have this statement emblazoned on a
near the entrance
of a building.
But “the truth will set you
did not originate in academia;
Jesus said it in John 8:32. In context,
Jesus’ statement has
nothing to do with classroom learning.
In fact, John 8:32
speaks of a
higher form of knowledge
than is capable
of being learned in a
Jesus had just finished a speech at the temple
where He delineated differences between
Himself and His listeners.
"You are from below;
I am from above.
You are of this world;
not of this world.
I told you
that you would die in your sins; if you do
not believe that I am he, you will
indeed die in your sins”
The result of Jesus’ message was that “even as he spoke, many believed in him” (verse 30). Then, in verse 31,
Jesus begins to speak just to those
who had believed.
“Jesus said, ‘If you hold to my teaching,
really my disciples’”
is more than intellectual assent; those
“really” followers of Christ will “hold to”
That means they will not only accept
His teachings as truth,
but they will also obey His teachings.
Action is proof of faith
(cf. James 2:17).
True disciples of Jesus believe that
He speaks the truth about God and the Scriptures.
They also know that He is who He claims to be.
Back in verse 25, the people asked Jesus who He was, and He responded,
"Just what I have been telling you from
There may be a tinge of exasperation in His response;
He had repeatedly made known
that He was the Messiah,
the one they had anticipated for many years.
Verse 32 begins with,
“Then you will know the truth.” “You” refers to
those who are
true disciples of Jesus. True disciples will know the truth.
More than that,
their eyes are opened
to a greater
understanding of the truth
(cf. 1 John 5:20).
Jesus’ disciples receive brings with it
Jesus continues, “And the truth will set you free”
At that point in history, the
Jews were under the rule of the
Even though Rome gave them an
exceptional amount of autonomy,
they were keenly aware of the Roman presence around
them in the form of soldiers, governors,
and empirically appointed kings.
When Jesus said
would set them free,
He was not talking about political freedom
(though the following verses indicate that’s how the Jews took it).
Jesus provides the best commentary for His own statement in verse 34.
“Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.”
Being a slave to sin is the
The freedom Jesus offers
is a spiritual freedom from the bondage of sin--
that is, release from the lifestyle of habitual lawlessness.
He continues with an analogy:
"Now a slave has no permanent place in the family,
a son belongs to it forever” (verse 35).
The people would have understood Jesus
to mean that they were not members of God’s family,
despite their biological relationship to Abraham
because they were slaves to sin.
If they were to become
disciples of Jesus,
they would know the truth of their condition and the
truth about Christ,
Jesus would set them free.
Believers would be freed from their bondage and brought into
the family of God.
Jesus is the
Knowing the Truth
will set one at liberty--
free from sin,
free from condemnation, and free from death
(Romans 6:22; 8:1–2).
Jesus came to
liberty to the captives
“Live as people who are free,
not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil,
but living as servants of God”
(1 Peter 2:16, ESV).