Calvary Church

4216 West 204th St, Matteson, IL – 708-481-8300
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  • Debt

    My intent here is not to be terribly political, but our governments have a real problem that our elected leaders will not face: They are spending beyond our means.  Our federal government is borrowing something like $0.43 to cover every dollar spent, with absolutely no plan of repaying the accumulating debt whatsoever.  To say that you are borrowing money without any intent to repay what has been borrowed, is, in effect, stealing from the people that you are borrowing from.  Perhaps even worse, our governments are putting children not yet born into debt, in effect, taking their earnings without their consent, which is also, in effect, stealing from them.

    There are three ways that I can see to correct this.  The first is to increase all taxes by more than 50%.  This might cover the borrowing that our governments do and give a little extra to start paying on the debt.  Included in this idea would have to be a balanced budget amendment that would punish the governing officials if they do not come up with a balanced budget.

    A second idea is to simply cut all governmental spending by 50%, which would eliminate the deficit and leave a little extra to begin paying off the debt.  This of course would cause millions to lose the income, jobs and programs upon which they are dependant.

    The third option would be a combination of the above ideas.

    When we deal with God, we need to understand that we are debtors in the extreme case and that even a speculative solution that we might suggest is worthless to help us.  No amount of “borrowing” is possible because we are dead in our transgressions and sins and dead folks can offer no collateral.

    We understand that we are extreme debtors, with a debt that we cannot survive paying as the wages of sin is death.  Unfortunately, we have been placed into this debt by the sinful actions of our forbearers.   However easy it might be to say that it is all their fault, we each continue to choose to put ourselves into deeper trouble/debt via our own sinful conduct. Apart from someone else stepping in and paying our debt for us, we have no hope whatsoever.

    Let us say that all of the nations that we owe money to stepped up and offered to pay off all of our national indebtedness.  A condition of the offer, however, would be that our government would learn to not spend more than it has so that we would not get ourselves into the same debt debacle that we have sold ourselves into at this point.  Would our nation take up this offer?  Would we be willing to swallow our pride and surrender that portion of our sovereignty with which we harm ourselves so effectively?

    I think that we would have to be pretty desperate to take such an offer.  To actually admit that we have fouled up so extremely that we are beyond our own resources and ability is reaching a bit too far.  Our tendency is to wait a little longer to see if something else works out when all long we know that nothing will.  We refuse to be honest with ourselves about our hopeless destiny.

    I think that most folks refuse the Grace of God for this same kind of reasoning: We decline the offer because our idiotic pride will not allow us to.  To accept the grace and mercy offered to us in Christ requires us to admit the following:

    1. We are utterly wrong about the way that we have been doing life.  We pursue that which is wrong from its origin in our hearts of darkness.  We each desire to be our own little deities demanding that all that surrounds us complies with our desires.

    2. We are accountable for the evil that we do.  There is an eternal destiny which will embrace us in the end which also creeps into our present.

    3. We are pathetically unable to do anything to change the darkness of our hearts or the heat of our destiny.

    4. We need Christ and have no other viable alternative to redeem anything in us.

    Nationally, I don’t think that we really have much of a choice anymore other than to take the issue head on and face the music.  I doubt that the nations that we owe over 16 trillion dollars to will be as loving as the Father has been to us.

    For us, it is not the music that we must face but rather the cross, where all of our debt has already been fully paid.  In facing the cross, we will also face the responsibility of seeking to live a life that follows the instructions of the one to whom we owe our very lives, as Paul exhorts in Ephesians 4:

    As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit —just as you were called to one hope when you were called —  one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. (NIV)

    Jesus said that if we would follow him, we need to give everything else up, without a notion of looking back on what we have left behind.  We do this because of the debt that was paid for us.  Note that it was not merely erased but fully paid via Christ’s death in our place.

    Finally, we do not seek to repay the debt to be redeemed, but because we have been redeemed. Seeking to live in contradiction to the way of this world is the least that we can do to honor the one who died to redeem us fully from it.

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