Too often, people have the idea that being “free” means being at liberty to do whatever they want. Surely you can see that if that were so, no one would have any freedom; life would be utter chaos.
James spoke of God’s word as “the law of liberty” (1:25). That phrase indicates that God’s law provides freedom in some sense. It also suggests that freedom is bound by law, a principle that is true in all realms, not just the spiritual one.
We live in a country where freedom abounds. For example, I am free to go into any supermarket I choose and gather up a basket full of whatever groceries I prefer. I am not, however, free to take them home without paying for them; criminal law precludes that. And if week after week my cart is full of junk food, my body will suffer the consequences; physiological laws dictate that.
Freedom, both in the civil and religious realms, is not only misunderstood, at times it is misused. “Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God” (1 Peter 2:16).