To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?”
Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. I know that you are Abraham’s descendants. Yet you are looking for a way to kill me, because you have no room for my word. I am telling you what I have seen in the Father’s presence, and you are doing what you have heard from your father.”
“Abraham is our father,” they answered.
“If you were Abraham’s children,” said Jesus, “then you would do what Abraham did. As it is, you are looking for a way to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. Abraham did not do such things. You are doing the works of your own father.”
“We are not illegitimate children,” they protested. “The only Father we have is God himself.”
Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I have come here from God. I have not come on my own; God sent me.” (John 8:31–42 NIV)
A man turned down a country road that had a sign on it that read “Road Closed – 2 miles ahead. No exit.” Sure enough, he drove two miles and the road was closed. He needed to turn around and drive all the way back. When he got back to the original sign, he read on the back of it, “What made you think this didn’t apply to you?”
Many times we come to a place where we think that whatever is being said or communicated does not apply to us. Jesus kept interacting with religious leaders who did not think what Jesus was saying applied to them. These religious leaders were able to give their credentials. They were able to trace their lineage back to the heroes of the Jewish faith to which they belonged. They knew their stuff. They could recite the truth of God. The problem was that in their hearts they had not submitted themselves to the truth of God found in the person and the life and the message of Jesus. They had not identified themselves with Jesus.
So many people today are committed to their truth. They can hold up their credentials, and they can point to those they identify with. Jesus offers to us the truth of God that sets us free from the sin that so often clouds our judgement and causes us brokenness. This freedom means we are sons and daughters of God. We are included in the family of God through knowing the truth of Jesus. The truth is, when the Son of God sets us free, we are then free indeed. Do not look for your identity anywhere else. Do not look to belong anywhere else.