ENFORCING YOUR LIBERTY PART 2
The word liberty is defined by the dictionary as:
The condition of being free from control or restrictions
(to restrict is to restrain within boundaries; to limit; to confine)
The condition of being free from imprisonment, slavery or forced labour.
The condition of being free to act, believe or express oneself as one chooses.
The second definition states that liberty is the condition of being free from imprisonment, slavery and forced labour and it is only when that is fulfilled that the third condition of being free to act, believe or expressing yourself as you chose can be accomplished.
Act 16:35-39 KJV 35 And when it was day, the magistrates sent the serjeants, saying, Let those men go. 36 And the keeper of the prison told this saying to Paul, The magistrates have sent to let you go: now therefore depart, and go in peace. 37 But Paul said unto them, They have beaten us openly uncondemned, being Romans, and have cast us into prison; and now do they thrust us out privily? nay verily; but let them come themselves and fetch us out. 38 And the serjeants told these words unto the magistrates: and they feared, when they heard that they were Romans. 39 And they came and besought them, and brought them out, and desired them to depart out of the city.
This story actually starts from verse 16, the Apostles were going to the place of prayers and found a possessed girl who had been crying after them for many days and Paul had tolerated her for so long.
But that day Paul could no longer bear it. You see when you come to the point that you can no longer bear something you will do the uncommon thing. Paul commanded the spirit of divination in the girl to go out and it went.
Now when the owners of the girl saw that the hope of their income had gone and the girl had lost the ability to fortune things, they grabbed Paul and Silas and dragged them before the magistrates. There were so many mob actions, troubles and the magistrates without hearing them out ordered them to be flogged and thrown into the prison.
Any power that wants to truncate your liberty shall be disgraced in Jesus name.
In the prison Paul and Silas were in bondage even though they were not criminals. You can suffer for the things of God even though you are in the center of God’s will.
They sang and prayed. Some people teach that when they pray and nothing happens then they sing and something happens. That is not true. The Greek expression talks about something that took place simultaneously. that is as they sang they also prayed and suddenly there was an earthquake. After this encounter there shall be a sudden breakthrough for you in Jesus name.
Every chain and shackles that has tied down your life is broken now. Every chain that has tied down business is broken in Jesus name.
The Bible says that all their bounds were loosed including those of the other prisoners.
When something good happens to you it would affect your neighbours. As you step out from here may you be a blessing in Jesus name, may you be the solution to someone’s problem. May your life radiate light to this dark word.
In the morning time the magistrates sent the lictors to the jailers to let the men go. They will let you go. If they refuse they will go down for you in Jesus name.The power of God shall release you, wherever they tied anyone down, you shall be set free by fire in Jesus name.
If you were in their case, what would you do? You will rejoice, celebrate, give testimony that God has answered your prayers. But let’s see what Apostle Paul said and did.
Act 16:37 KJV But Paul said unto them, They have beaten us openly uncondemned, being Romans, and have cast us into prison; and now do they thrust us out privily? nay verily; but let them come themselves and fetch us out.
That got my attention. The owner of the girl had accused Paul and Silas of being Jews who had come with strange teachings that were not consistent with the Rome edict. But Paul here said they were Romans and they had beaten them openly and cast them into prison. He said he was not going anywhere unless those magistrates came to bring them out. Wao! What an audacity.
I pray for you, receive the grace to confront your challenger and Goliath in Jesus name
So this is my question. What is the big thing about being a Roman citizen that made Paul ask the magistrates to come by themselves?
When you read verse 38, the Bible says that when the magistrates heard that they were Romans, they were afraid and came pleading and escorting them out of the city. The expression “besought them” in Greek actually means that the magistrates, in a respectful manner, conducted them out of the prison, and humbly begged them to leave the city.
Wherever you have been treated shamefully you shall be honour again in Jesus name.
What is it about being a Roman citizen?
There was a similar incident in Act 22. Paul had been arrested by the jews in Act 21 for defiling their temple and there was so much confusion in town. The chief captain heard about it and rushed to the scene, he ordered that Paul be taken into the castle. Paul asked him permission to speak to them in Hebrew language
While he was talking there was so much great noise so the chief captain ordered that Paul should be examined or interrogated in order to know why the people were shouting at him like that
Act 22:23-29 KJV 23 And as they cried out, and cast off their clothes, and threw dust into the air, 24 The chief captain commanded him to be brought into the castle, and bade that he should be examined by scourging; that he might know wherefore they cried so against him. 25 And as they bound him with thongs, Paul said unto the centurion that stood by, Is it lawful for you to scourge a man that is a Roman, and uncondemned? 26 When the centurion heard that, he went and told the chief captain, saying, Take heed what thou doest: for this man is a Roman. 27 Then the chief captain came, and said unto him, Tell me, art thou a Roman? He said, Yea. 28 And the chief captain answered, With a great sum obtained I this freedom. And Paul said, But I was free born. 29 Then straightway they departed from him which should have examined him: and the chief captain also was afraid, after he knew that he was a Roman, and because he had bound him.
While they were binding him, Paul asked the centurion in charge in verse 25 whether it is lawful to scourge a Roman citizen who has not been found guilty and condemned?
Again what is it about being a Roman citizen that Paul is talking about? Because the Bible says when they heard that Paul was a Roman citizen, all of them departed from. After this encounter evil will depart from you in Jesus name.
So the question remains: what is it about being a Roman citizen? In Act chapter 16 and 22 there are certain things that we need to know about being a Roman citizen that Paul was referring to in both chapters and gave him some deliverance concerning his liberty.
Paul well knew the Roman laws; and on their violation by the magistrates he pleaded. There were two laws that protected the fundamental human rights of every Roman citizen.
The Valerian law forbade any Roman citizen to be bound. The Porcian law forbade any Roman to be beaten with rods.
The Valerian law declared that if a citizen appealed from the magistrate to the people, it should not be lawful for the magistrate to beat him with rods, or to behead him (Plutarch, Life of P. Valerius Publicola; Livy, ii. 8). By the Porcian law it was expressly forbidden that a citizen should be beaten (Livy, iv. 9). Cicero says that the body of every Roman citizen was inviolable. “The Porcian law,” he adds, “has removed the rod from the body of every Roman citizen.”
It is a transgression of the law to bind a Roman citizen: it is wickedness to scourge him.
This is the reason why the magistrates were afraid in Chapter 16 and what made the chief captain who knew the value of being a Roman citizen to ask Paul that he bought his own freedom with a large sum of money but Paul told him that he was freely born.
There was something about being a Roman citizen that grants absolute freedom from maltreatment of any kind. That the chief captain had to spend so much money to purchase it.
Paul had dual citizenship, he was a Jew from Tarsus and at the same time a Roman citizen. Here he is taking advantage of his Roman citizenship. There was dignity and honour attached to being a Roman citizen. There were rights and privileges and if they are violated, the violator will be judged and disciplined by Rome.
Under the New covenant, do you know that we as Christians also have dual citizenship?
Eph 2:19 KJV Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;
Phi 3:20 KJV For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:
The root of the Greek word for conversation is “polites” Phonetic: pol-ee’-tace. Definition: a citizen; the inhabitant of any city or country
The word “conversation” there means: …: or, we live or conduct ourselves as citizens of heaven, or, for obtaining heaven.
Just like there were privileges and advantages of being a Roman citizen, so also there are privileges and advantages of being a citizen of heaven.
These rights and privileges were purchased for us by the Lord Jesus when He died, was buried and resurrected on the third day. When we receive Jesus as our Lord and Saviour, these rights become ours. These are the benefits of being born again. This is good news. Share it.
We are not just ordinary citizens but we are also ambassadors for Christ.
2Cor 5:20 KJV Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.
Go and find out the privileges of an ambassador. One of them is diplomatic immunity. He cannot be arrested, searched at the airport, detained, violated, harassed and embarrassed. He represents the foreign nation, whatever treatment you gave him is interpreted as what you gave to his nation.
There are certain things that are not lawful that the enemy is doing to us and we have been accepting them as normal. We couldn’t even distinguish between abnormal and normal. How do you know that those things happening to you are not lawful? It is only when you check them out with the Bible. Whatever is not consistent with the word is not lawful and must be challenged.
Here is the conclusion, take advantage of your citizenship. If your health is violated with sickness, it is a transgression of the law of heaven that has declared us healed 2Pet 2: 24. If we are facing financial challenges, it is a violation of our constitutional provision in 2Cor 8: 9. Even when we make a mistake and we and our things are confiscated lawfully we still have the right to receive them back because Isa 49: 24-26 says that a lawful captive be delivered.
You see in the first place we read in Act 16 because Paul did not disclose who he was on time he was flogged and thrown into prison but in the second place in Act 22, while they were tying him, he started talking. Start talking now, command your rights to be maintained. Enforce your right to dignity and honour.
Our job today is to enforce the victory that Jesus won for us.
I refused to be poor, sick, dejected, humiliated, embarrassed, undignified, harassed, failed, I refused to be a failure. I am a success, I am a citizen. Declare who you are and just like the people who wanted to interrogate Paul departed from him so sickness and disease, poverty will depart from you in Jesus name.
IF YOU DON’T KNOW YOUR RIGHTS AND PRIVILEGE OR YOU REFUSE TO ENFORCE THEM, YOU WILL SUFFER UNNECESSARILY LIKE PAUL IN ACT 16.
YOU HAVE TO DECLARE YOUR RIGHT AND WHO YOU ARE
YOU HAVE TO INSIST ON BEING TREATED FAIRLY AND RIGHTLY
YOU MUST NOT TOLERATE INJUSTICE AND VIOLATION OF YOUR RIGHTS BY THE DEVIL
PAUL KNEW THE LAWS OF ROME, YOU MUST KNOW YOUR OWN CONSTITUTION WHICH IS THE BIBLE
READ IT, STUDY IT, MEDITATE ON IT AND ACT ON IT. LISTEN TO ANOINTED TAPES. READ ANOINTED BOOKS.
1Ti 4:15 KJV Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all.
2Ti 2:15 KJV Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
HOS 4: 6 PEOPLE PERISH FOR LACK OF KNOWLEDGE AND ENFORCEMENT OF IT
REFUSE TO SUFFER WHAT JESUS HAD SUFFERED FOR YOU RATHER IT IS TIME TO ENJOY THEM BECAUSE HE HAS PAID FOR THEM