Free Indeed


“Man of Sorrows” by Hillsong has been one of my favorite worship songs ever since I first heard it a few months back. My church did a sermon series leading up to Easter this year, and they used the song “O Praise the Name” by Hillsong as the song that way played each week during the series. But the week before Easter, they decided to use a different song for one week, and that song was “Man of Sorrows.” I had never heard the song before, and since I was playing bass in the worship band that week, the first time I heard it was the day of our worship practice for that week. I liked the song when I heard it then, but was focused on the music of it and not the lyrics. But that week, I listened to the song a few more times, and this time, did listen to the lyrics, and liked a lot of them, but what really made an impact on me was the bridge.

Now my debt is paid
It is paid in full
By the precious blood
That my Jesus spilled

Now the curse of sin
Has no hold on me
Whom the Son sets free
Oh is free indeed


The initial thing that made me focus on the lyrics was the line, “…Whom the Son sets free, oh is free indeed.” This is pulled from John 8 where Jesus says, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”

This verse is the basis for an online community I have interacted with that reaches out to those struggling with homosexuality. The most vocal opinions on the subject say from one side that nothing should prevent someone who experiences same-sex attraction to act on that attraction. But as I and others have found, that is not compatible with their beliefs and we stick to the position that acting on the attractions would be sinful. The problem is that many churches and conservative groups seem to imply that it somehow is a worse sin, something is wrong with us for feeling these things, or even that it is an unforgivable sin. But this verse shows that it is not! If the Son sets you free, which can happen to anyone, then you are free indeed!

The song expands, saying that our debts are paid in full by Jesus’ blood, and that we are no longer held by the curse of sin when we are with Jesus! To me, this song says the exact opposite of many things I felt growing up, and says it in such a clear way that we don’t have to feel that shame anymore, Jesus has taken it from us and we can feel free indeed. It then has a chorus that praises God in response to His mercy that we don’t deserve.


Oh that rugged cross
My salvation
Where Your love poured out over me
Now my soul cries out
Praise and honor unto Thee

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