Release from a state of slavery is both a literal and a metaphorical concept in the Bible. The Israelites secured their freedom from bondage in Egypt under the leadership of Moses, but if the chosen people were to renounce their side of the covenant, God would return them to slavery (Deut. 28: 47–8). Israelites who had been sold into slavery by fellow Israelites were to be released every seventh year (Deut. 15: 12 ff.).

In the NT freedom is a prominent notion but it was not freedom from the Roman yoke by means of arms that Jesus advocated but freedom from the domination of the powers of evil (John 8: 34 ff.). Paul continued this message by teaching that Christians have freedom from the domination of the law (Gal. 5: 1) and the institutions of Judaism. Christians are the true children of Abraham (Gal. 3: 7).