FORT WORTH, Texas (BP)–The topic was freedom and the message was personal to Beth Moore who spoke April 19 during the National Christian Women’s Convention sponsored by LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention.
“The freedom message is my life message. It is the story of how people in bondage can be liberated,” said Moore, author of several Bible studies for women and founder of Living Proof Ministries in Houston.
“Many of you are familiar with my Bible study, ‘Breaking Free,’ but today I wanted to give you a fresh word on freedom, so I went to my concordance and looked up the word free,” she said to the 7,000 participants.
She said the word free is used for the first time in Genesis 2. “In verse 16, the ‘Lord God commanded the man you are free to eat.’ And then in verse 17 God states, ‘… you are free to eat of any fruit except for one.’
“God is telling man he is free, and the way to stay free is not to eat from one fruit.
“Now if you have a ‘no’ concept of God and believe God is all about what we cannot do, then it is time to think again,” she said.
Moore said she wanted the women to take two principles home with them about freedom.
The first is: “Bondage results from the erroneous belief that God is withholding something good from us.
“The serpent is a part of the Garden of Eden story. When you read about the serpent, think of the words ‘beguiling’ and ‘seduction’ and see a red flag. The serpent always is turning God’s Word around,” Moore said.
Remember, God said you are free to eat except for one fruit, but the “serpent is whispering in our ears that God is holding out on us.”
“God is not holding out on us with no’s. His no’s are to help us enjoy the yeses,” Moore said.
The second principle is: “Our appetites for the spice of the world result from not tasting all the fruit of our own garden.”
In Genesis 2:9, the garden is described as containing every tree that is pleasing to the sight and that is good for food.
“Don’t buy Satan’s lie that all that is good and fun is displeasing to God. Many of us are bored stiff. Church has become routine and one-dimensional. Take a break from the apples and oranges and go eat some kiwi and mango,” Moore said.
“Not only is God the sovereign Lord of my life, but also he is the comfort in the midst of loss and the answer to the seeking heart. Is God the blast of your life? Do you enjoy your God?
“It is time you discovered you can laugh with God, celebrate with God, chat with God and cry with God. Too many Christians have become anesthetized to God when our passion should be with God and not with carnal things.
“I found God out of pure desperation and discovered he is the wildest ride of your life. Something in me was pulled to self-destruction, but the Lord came to my rescue and kept working with me. He brought my wildness into the corral of his safety and allowed me to dance,” she said.
Moore concluded the 90-minute Bible study with a blessing for the group.
“May you dance, may you laugh, may you cry. May you be very much alive in the mighty name of Jesus. And don’t let anyone take away your dance.”
(BP) photo posted in the BP Photo Library at http://www.bpnews.net. Photo title: BETH MOORE.