So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.
Our fathers were slaves in Egypt. Pharaoh ordered their lives. He told them what to work, where to work, and how to work. He told them to serve him and no one else. Pharaoh was to be obeyed and worshipped under pain of death. When they cried under the cruel oppression, the Almighty El-Shaddai heard them and by His mighty Right Hand delivered them. He delivered them, brought them to a mountain and bound them to Him and to His Laws. Hashem’s Law then ordered our father’s lives. It told them what to work, where to work, and how to work; to serve Adonai and no-one else. Adonai was to be obeyed and worshipped under pain of death.
For those who have a tendency to think that living under the Torah is a form of bondage, it could be concluded that the Children of Israel went from one bondage to another; from slavery under Pharaoh to slavery under God. Indeed, judging by the way living under the commandments of Torah is viewed by many people today, these conclusions are inevitable.
Let me indulge in a mariner’s analogy. A sailor is at sea. He is in charge of an expensive vessel. He is also responsible for the life of a crew and he has a mission to accomplish. He is at the helm. He has a serious look on his face and does not make a move. He does not take one decision without checking his compass. This reliance on the compass determines the success or failure of his mission, the safety of his vessel; the life and death of his crew. I heard it said that if a sailor wants to enjoy the high seas, he must become 'slave' to the compass.
My friend, thus it is with life. To keep our traveling vessel worthy, to preserve the life of those entrusted in our care, and to accomplish the goal for which we were sent on the high-seas of life, we also must become slave to the ‘Compass’, and in this case, the ‘Compass’ is the Torah.
A famous American folk singer used to sing the words, "You’re gonna have to serve somebody; whether it may the devil or whether it may be the Lord, you’re gonna have to serve somebody!" This is so true. In the end, we truly always have to serve somebody. We either serve the idolatrous King of the land or we serve Hashem. And even if our lives are not regulated by external forces, we eventually become slaves to the worse bondage of all: the bondage to our own passions.
Serving God under His Torah is the most wonderful freedom of all. It means freedom from human slavery, self-imposed or otherwise. It is the wings that free us from even the bondage of gravity to take us to higher ground. It is the very substance that delivers us from the fear of death to bring us to eternal life. If that is bondage, may I live under it all the days of my life.