I don't know many Christians who don't struggle with guilt, besetting sins, and sinful patterns that cause grief and destruction in their life. I know in my life, I've dealt with hearty doses of all of the above. Therefore, I was especially interested to read the new book Unchained: If Jesus Has Set Us Free, Why Don't We Feel Free? by Noel Jesse Heikkinen. The book description says:
"Often when people follow Jesus, they feel more guilty instead of more free. A powerful book for the spiritually restless, Unchained shows readers how to have a robust faith that celebrates their freedom in Christ without compromising their holiness as God’s followers.
Unchained turns to the person and work of Jesus Christ as the source of freedom—not just his work 2,000 years ago but also what he is doing today. As readers dig into the meaning of the freedom that Jesus offers, they will understand, perhaps for the first time, what true freedom in Christ means."
I instantly loved Noel's down-to-earth, open writing style. He's never preachy or high and mighty. He admits to his own sins and struggles that he's gone through in his life right off the bat and I felt like I could relate to him right away. He repeats Galatians 5:1 over and over: "For freedom Christ has set us free", and this verse is the cornerstone of the book, and what he expounds upon throughout. I walked away from Unchained feeling, well, unchained. I like to prescribe myself "rules" I have to live by to be a "good" Christian, and beat myself up when I don't live up to my (quite frankly, sometimes unattainable) goals. In this book, Noel explains why we don't have to follow our self-made rules in order for God to love us - in fact, Jesus came to free us from the law! However, Noel never excuses sin which I loved. There are those who bend toward the "it's okay to sin because it's all under grace", which drives me crazy, but Noel doesn't lean toward this view. Unchained is a very well balanced book in that regard. Highly recommended for every Christian, whether you've been saved 10 minutes or 10 years.
I received a copy of this book from Litfuse in order to provide an honest and unbiased review. All opinions are my own.