Human free will and the ability to make choices is an awesome gift from God.
Except when you’re supposed to be doing geometry and you’re watching Psych instead (side note: a show that could probably have an article written about its moral ambiguity).
But on a more serious level, those are the times when we wonder: “Would it have been better for us to not choose and always follow the right path?”
There’s no place in the Bible that more strongly opposes this than in a story most know: the beginning of the world. God intentionally allowed Adam and Eve to sin or to not sin, despite the enormous fallout that would ensue if they chose to grab the fruit.
“And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” – Genesis 2:16-17 (NIV)
Sounds like a consequence that slightly beats out skipping a few geometry theorems.
And yet, God didn’t interfere when the first couple chose the infamous answer: death. From the very start, He allowed us to wield our free will, no matter the unforeseen consequences on our end.
And that’s kind of the rub: the results are entirely determined by the notions we act upon.
Which, considering the humongous countless ways we can mess it up, is kind of freaky.
And that’s where the freedom to obey comes into play. We have the ability to do right or wrong. Knowing which path to follow, though seemingly a black and white decision, is harder than it appears.
Thankfully, in the book of Galatians, the apostle Paul (personal hero) sets us on the right path.
“You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love.” – Galatians 5:13 (NIV)
We have the ability to disobey at any given time. More importantly, though, we always have the freedom to obey and build up one another in love.
So, put down the newest Netflix original (or preferred streaming service of choice) and choose to serve others.