A man huddles in the gray of a window-less, door-less cube. Out of nowhere, he hears, “Freedom!” and a sign is shoved through a slit in the wall. He cautiously picks it up. It’s pointed on one end and reads: Freedom.
He stares at it for a moment, confused. A hand shoots through the slot, grabs the sign from him, turns the arrow downward, and hands it back to the man. Freedom is in the floor. The man tears up the carpet and finds a hatch. He reaches down, turning from gray to color. He gets rid of the carpet in his cell and lays down fresh grass instead. He lowers the dim light and finds pure light to shine in his cell. And last, he tears some tarnished wallpaper from the wall, reaches into the hole in the floor, and stretches the image of a beautiful outdoor scene over the wall.
It creates a door. He steps through, free from his cell, into the outdoors. The cell disintegrates. And the hole disappears. But the sign lies on the ground. He picks it up and starts to walk. Somewhere far away, someone yells, “Freedom!” The man runs toward it.
He finds a whole field of gray cells, still enclosed, each with an occupant. He smiles a little to himself, takes his sign, and runs toward the nearest one.
Who gives the man his freedom?
Why does he gladly help others gain their freedom?
What does it mean to truly be free? Have you experienced this kind of freedom?
This short film is not intended to directly communicate the gospel, but to facilitate a conversation that reveals our need for the gospel. An alternative way to read the title of this film is “Freedom from Within,” which means finding a way to be freed from yourself. Sometimes we recognize the need to be rescued from ourselves—from our hurts, habits and hang-ups. Like the man in the short, we need someone from the outside to invade our world and show us the way to freedom. God allows and wants people to know Him. As His followers, we have the honor and joy of telling others about His sacrifice and our own freedom. We get to be a part of setting others free.
But Jesus is the original liberator. He came from heaven to Earth to set us free. We need someone from the outside to enter into our world and rescue us. We need someone to set us free. Until we find freedom in Jesus, we’re separated from God and enslaved to the things in this world. “Sin,” or choosing our way above God’s, separates us from God. This is what we see in ourselves that we need to be rescued from. Jesus offers us a way to freedom and sets us free from all the things we regret.
Even more than that, He offers to become friends with us. We find that true freedom really comes when we are connected with Jesus in a personal relationship. To have this personal relationship, we must acknowledge that we are sinners and that our sin separates us from God. Like the man who couldn’t help himself in his own cell, there’s nothing we can do on our own to reach God. Only God’s son Jesus is able to bridge that gap for us through His death and resurrection. We must individually confess Jesus as our Savior and Lord in order to know God personally.