If Jesus has set us free, why don’t we feel free?

Most Christians can rattle off a laundry list  of reasons that Jesus came, lived a sinless life,  died, and rose again. Eternal life and forgiveness of sins sit right at the top of the list  in most people’s minds, as do love and reconciliation, but one reason is often conspicuously missing: freedom.

Apostle Paul reminds us in Galatians 5:1, “For freedom Christ has set us free.” Jesus did something that made us free, and the reason he made us free was so that we would actually be free.

If this is true, why don’t we talk about it more in our churches? Why isn’t freedom the center point of our evangelism or even more controversially, our discipleship? Our culture LOVES to talk about freedom and Christians (who have a corner on true freedom) are eerily silent on the issue.

Our pews (and chairs) are filled with people who don’t feel free…not in the slightest. Sinful urges dog them every day, churches and pastors (sometimes unknowingly) shame and guilt them into a standard of living that is utterly unreachable, and just mention prayer to most Christians and they can feel the chains of guilt shackle around their consciences.

Here’s what people are saying about Unchained:

Everybody talks about freedom but very few experience it. Still fewer have the ability to speak about it in such a refreshing, clear, and profound way. That’s what Noel Heikkinen has done in the book you hold in your hands. Unchained is a life-changing book. You’ll laugh, cry, and rejoice as you dance and sing before the throne of One who has set you free. Read this book and give it to everybody you love. They will “rise up and call you blessed!

Steve Brown

Seminary Professor, Author, and Broadcaster, Key Life Ministries

Noel writes as a pastor who is aware of the bondage men and women wrestle with. He writes out of a deep understanding of scripture applied to real struggles in a really bound up world. This book he has written is well worth your time.

Matt Chandler

Lead Pastor, The Village Church

Lots of Christians talk about the incredible freedom found in the Gospel but they live their life as if it’s an idea, not a reality. In Unchained, Noel Heikkinen loosens the chains that keep so many who have been pardoned living like they are on probation.

Larry Osborne

Pastor, North Coast Church

Recovering hypocrites of the world rejoice! Noel Jesse Heikkinen has written a beautiful primer on what may be the richest and most exciting (yet misconstrued) word in the Christian lexicon: freedom. Brimming with practical insight and humor, Unchained unpacks the infectious emancipation at the heart of the Christian faith in terms that are both enlivening and deeply reassuring. A vital contribution on a vital subject.

David Zahl

Author, A Mess of Help

Noel Heikkinen is one of the best new generation pastors that is effectively communicating the gospel today. Join my friend in a walk through the scripture, his own story, and the stories of others as he helps us understand what it means to be unchained by the gospel. Read this book with a group of friends to encourage one another with his wise words.

Dave Travis

Chief Encouragement and Executive Officer, Leadership Network

Here is a clear, potent presentation of something I forget just about every hour of my life. The good news really is good news. But not too good to be true. Our problem is not with the message, it’s with our forgetfulness. I’m so glad for Noel, and this book. A brisk reminder of gospel liberty.

Joel Virgo

Senior Pastor, Church of Christ the King

It’s been said that you are only as free as those around you feel. I can’t think of anyone better to write a book about our freedom in Christ than my friend Noel Heikkinen. I feel really, really free around him. As you read this book you’ll feel that freedom too. No matter where you are in your spiritual journey, I encourage you to join Noel on the path to discover the wonderful, life-changing truth contained in this simple verse: “For Freedom Christ has set us free.

Elliot Grudem

Founder and President, Leaders Collective

As a fellow ‘recovering hypocrite,’ I found myself feeling very hopeful as I read Unchained. And I was not disappointed. In his book, Noel has powerfully reminded us, in a sincere and no-nonsense way, of the freedom Jesus wants us to experience. This is a book written by a fellow traveler and not some know-it-all expert.

Chris Willard

Church Consultant, Generis