“While they promise them liberty, they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by whom a person is overcome, by him also he is brought into bondage.”
While they promise them liberty
The liberty that false teachers promised here is freedom from moral constraint. Preaching sensual pleasure must have been popular even in that day.
There is an ever-recurring confusion between liberty and license. Legalistic repression is no biblical value. The Bible asserts the right of individuals to make their own decisions. However, the Bible also asserts that the decisions we make need to be responsible. We need to be responsible for the decisions we make. Freedom must operate under the framework of principle. We make choices based on principle.
False teachers promise liberty, but they cannot produce liberty. Politicians cannot produce liberty. Only God can produce true liberty.
Ga 5:1, “Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.”
God bases true liberty on the principle of grace. Legalism attacks liberty. We cannot bully people into absolutes. Taboos will not produce absolutes. Neither can social action produce spirituality.
Bible freedom also must operate within God’s overarching principles, such as human government or the family.
they themselves are slaves of corruption
What a contradiction! False teachers promise liberty while they themselves are under slavery to their “corruption.” Their slavery was slavery to sin. Sin vanquished their freedom.
No one can promise liberty without dealing with the root of slavery – sin. They are slaves to their own “corruption.” This is why politics (liberal or conservative) cannot solve man’s problems. Eliminating poverty, establishing a minimum income, or raising social security will not resolve man’s problem. The more we try to legislate to society, the more we enslave it. Politicians promise us the moon, but they can’t deliver.
for by whom a person is overcome
In the name of political freedom, people are in political bondage all over the world. If we let religious leaders “overcome” or defeat us, we become their slaves!
by him also he is brought into bondage
The very people who say that they are giving us liberty enslave us. The very thing they promise us is the very thing they take from us. Socialism promises liberty but takes freedoms from the people to whom they promise it. Socialism ends in giving power and authority to politicians. Socialism always emphasizes the herd concept. God’s Word always emphasizes the rights of the individual.
Mt 15:14, “Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.”
Where we eliminate the absolutes of the Bible, we enslave ourselves to sin.
The false teaching mode of operation is to promise liberty yet enslave their converts in sin. Religious pundits say, “We will set you free from your medieval religion. We will emancipate you from Victorian Christianity. We will free you so that you can do what you please. The puritanical morals of the Bible are passé.” What they do not tell you is that they are enslaving you to another system.
People eat this up. They love to hear it because it appeals to their lower nature. Little do they realize that this enslaves them to “corruption.”