Pastorbluejeans Unplugged Weekender: National Independence and Freedom in Christ.
The Philippines celebrated the 122nd celebration of Independence on June 12, 2020. The country unfurled its flag and proclaimed its independence from Spain on June 12, 1898 at Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo’s residence in Kawit, Cavite. The Philippine Flag, however, was waved by Ambrosio Rinazares Bautista from the window not from the balcony of Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo’s house. It didn’t exist during that time. Furthermore, our flag was first unfurled at Cavite City on May 28, 1898 after the victory at the Battle of Alapan.
The very first celebration of Philippine Independence took place on June 12, 1962 by virtue of Proclamation No. 28, s. 1962 issued by then President Diosdado Macapagal on May 12, 1962. It effectively moved the date of Philippine independence from July 4 to June 12. July 4, 1946, marked the United States’ formal recognition of the independence of the Republic of the Philippines. Pursuant to the provisions of the Philippine Independence Act or the Tydings Mcduffie Law of 1934, the Philippines was given a ten-year transition period to prepare for independence.
Thus, July 4, 1946 was the culmination of the said preparation. It was also the date the Philippines became the Republic of the Philippines – the Third Republic, with Manuel Roxas re-taking his oath, eliminating the pledge of allegiance to the United States of America which was required prior to independence, this time as the first President of the Republic of the Philippines. The Congress of the Commonwealth then became the First Congress of the Republic, and international recognition was finally achieved as governments entered into treaties with the new republic.
June 12, was the date independence from Spain was proclaimed in Emilio Aguinaldo’s home in Kawit, Cavite. In his proclamation, President Macapagal cited “the establishment of the Philippine Republic by the Revolutionary Government under General Emilio Aguinaldo on June 12, 1898, marked our people’s declaration and exercise of their right to self-determination, liberty and independence.” Macapagal’s move was in accordance with the view of historians and many political leaders, that the foundation date of the nation should be June 12, since July 4 was the restoration of that independence. (Read more: The First Celebration of Independence Day)
Freedom in Christ
In the Bible, sinful human beings are likened to slaves who are in bondage to sin, Satan, the Law and death. When they receive God’s salvation, they are freed from this slavery. This is by virtue of God’s supreme grace that has as its basis the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Although believers are free from the law to which the ancient Israelites were bound, they are not free to do as they like. (Read more: Christian Freedom). They have been saved by God’s grace so that they might be free from sin, not to that they might fall under sin’s power again. Sinful human beings feel no obligation to righteousness, but neither do they get any satisfaction from sin. They get only disappointment, bondage and death. Being a slave of God brings satisfaction and holiness in the present world, and the fullness of eternal life in the age to come. (Romans 6:20-23)
The Truth Shall Set Us Free
“And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” They answered Him, “We are Abraham’s descendants, and have never been in bondage to anyone. How can You say, ‘You will be made free’?” Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.” (John 8:32-36, NKJV)
‘Ttruth’ here refers to Jesus Himself and His teachings recorded in the Gospels. Only Jesus, the Truth, can set us free and through his teachings we learn how to enjoy such freedom as servants or better yet, friends of Christ!