Submission to Authority, Even If It’s Abusive: When Is It OK to Push Back?

What the Bible says About Submission to Authority:

When Is It OK to Resist?

(Romans chapter 13, verses 1-5)

It’s time for us all to step up to the plate and score a base hit for our planet

I have been watching with growing dismay at the insanity that is ongoing in the oval office. Although I voted for Donald Trump in 2016, I now regret doing so when I consider Trump’s openly racist sentiments and the off-hand way he has handled his presidency. With that in mind, combined with my continuing and chronological study of the writings of the apostles, I have found a place where the two intersect within the first 5 verses of Romans 13. These verses have to do with submission to authority in the context of being a law-abiding citizen, but mainly as Paul saw it when he wrote these words roughly 2,000 years ago. At the time that this was written, all of what is now modern-day Israel was under the military occupation of the Roman empire. Paul the apostle wrote this book in that context, so I will begin at verse 1.

Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. For he is God’s servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God’s servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience.” (Romans 13, verses 1-5)

At the time that Paul wrote this, the death penalty was commonplace. Capital punishment existed as a means of intimidation and absolute control, and that punishment was carried out with utter ruthlessness and without mercy. Moreover, unlike the Jewish religious establishment of Paul’s time, Paul was a Roman citizen and as such he was given rights and privileges that were not shared equally with other non-citizens. So we can all clearly see from this example that inequality is something that has been with us for thousands of years. But how does this compare with life in the early 21st century? Although the death penalty is still administered for capital crimes such as murder and treason, it is carried out with relative infrequency compared to the days of the Roman empire.

There were also debtors prisons in Paul’s day. People who ran into financial trouble back in those days were routinely imprisoned until their debts were paid. Contrast that with today, when and if one gets into financial difficulty, bankruptcy laws exist that are much more fair and equitable than prison. Compared to the times in which the apostle Paul lived, we get a complete picture of a much more fair, equitable and even lenient world. Let me now make some comparisons between Paul’s world and ours using this passage of scripture as a backdrop to the picture that I will now paint for you with my words.

The authorities that exist have been established by God”. Although Paul sincerely believed at the time that he wrote these words that he was absolutely correct, he was speaking more as a Roman citizen than he was as a minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ. As a modern American, our rule of law is the Constitution of the United States, and so I am writing today in that context as an American citizen. We have the right to free speech in modern times, not to mention bankruptcy laws, that did not exist in Paul’s time. That right which is established under the US Constitution allows me to write these words without fear of punishment. As such I am within the law and I will remain so for as long as the law is fair. It’s when it’s unfair that things can get a bit dicey.

Paul continues with this same theme as he writes further: “Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong.” The same applies today. Organizing an armed revolt in modern-day America is an idea that I am very much against, preaching and teaching as a man of peace who tries his best to emulate Jesus, the Prince of Peace. Besides, the police have well-armed SWAT teams, and there is always the National Guard that exists within any given state, and so I think one would be foolhardy at best to try and take on authority in this manner. On the other hand, it is perfectly legal, and I would also say that it is truly necessary, to engage in peaceful protest against laws and policies that we disagree with. The First Amendment gives us that right, and the Second one gives us the right to defend the first – two more things that did not exist during Paul’s time all those centuries ago. In this regard, we can interpret this passage of scripture somewhat differently than Paul the apostle.

Paul then continues making his point, and so will I. “Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you.” It is sad to say that this is no longer true in the modern world. Trying as I do to do what is right, I often find myself looked down on by the many godless people who live in the world of today. I put up with the occasional ridicule, but I do so knowing that God is watching everything I do and He is listening to everything I say. But to get back to the topic at hand, it is wise to be “free from fear of the one in authority”. The best way to follow this principle is to obey the ten commandments and the teachings of Jesus Christ. Just by doing these 2 things, we can keep ourselves out of much trouble. Besides, the Bible says in the Old Testament to “obey the laws of the land, that it may go well with you in the place you are abiding”. Those words were written at least three thousand years ago, and they are still just as true today as they were back then.

By the same token, there are things happening and situations unfolding within the US government that are completely contrary to God’s laws. Take the ten commandments as an example. The eighth commandment says, “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor”, which can be expanded to include this simple command: ‘You shall not lie’. Yet America found itself embroiled in a war in Iraq that was based on a lie. Specifically, that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq when Saddam Hussein was still in power. Of course, those WMD’s turned out to be non-existent, and it took 4,400 US fatalities – and over 100,000 Iraqi civilian deaths – to find that out.

The same applies to Afghanistan. Our troops have been there for 19 years, first to find Osama Bin Laden even though everybody knew he was in Pakistan, and now for a withdrawal of US troops that will take the rest of this century at the rate it’s going. The US government is spending $6 billion dollars a week on this war, a thoroughly obscene sum of money by any standard. Yet all the while, there is unemployment here in the USA that is around 9%, and that doesn’t count all the millions of long-term unemployed who have stopped looking for work, as well as those who are working part-time when full-time work is what is needed. There is no money to create over a million badly needed jobs in our country, but there is an unlimited supply of cash for multiple illegal military occupations and drone strikes all around the globe. This is a moral outrage, and anybody with even a little bit of a conscience should be out in the streets protesting against the US military-industrial complex. That’s not in the letter of the Bible, but it most certainly is in the Spirit thereof.

Paul then writes in verse 5, “Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience.” This is just as true today as it was when it was first written. Being an outlaw will only get us into trouble, and jail is no place for anybody to be except for the worst criminals. It is a bad idea to drive your car at 90 miles an hour because it is against the law, and because it is dangerous. Likewise, the ten commandments must be obeyed. We should not steal, lie or commit adultery, nor should we have any false gods in our lives. We can and should worship the one true God and him alone, who sent his only Son to die for our sins and then to rise from the dead on the third day after he was crucified. In the same way that we submit ourselves to God, we should, as far as it is possible, submit to authority here on earth. And we should do so not only “because of possible punishment but also because of conscience”. But here in the 21st century, we can and should oppose and protest against the government similarly because of matters of conscience. It is a part of the laws of our land, and we should exercise this right because our rule of law says we can. This is also in keeping with God’s commands, and I hope and pray that it always remains so.

This week’s ongoing Biblical studies will be part 3 of Romans chapter 8

We Are More Than Conquerors Through Christ

(Romans 8, verses 29-39)

Last week we discussed Romans chapter 8 up to verse 30. This week, to put things into their proper context, we will start at verses 28-30 from last week’s study to maintain the continuity of what the apostle Paul was trying to communicate with us. The words flow with the living water that embodies the risen Lord as follows:

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to His purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined he also called; those he called he also justified; those he justified he also glorified.”

Paul starts out by stating the obvious. “In all things God works for the good of those who love him”. This is something we can count on in this life, the idea of God being perpetually on our side. However, let’s not forget that this is on the condition that we remain faithful to the commandments of Christ (“If you love me, obey my commandments”). Jesus has already committed himself to us 100% by allowing his own crucifixion and death which paid the penalty for all our sins. The penalty he paid on our behalf was the conquest of death, which our Lord also conquered by his resurrection, which gave us access to the same eternal life that our dear Lord Jesus has. After building on this idea in verses 29 and 30 Paul then takes it to its logical conclusion both intellectually and Spiritually starting in verse 31.

“What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all, how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died – more than that, who was raised to life – is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: ‘For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered’.” (Romans 8:31-36)

“If God is for us, who can be against us?” Since God has already offered up Jesus as a living sacrifice for us all, will He not graciously give us whatever else we ask for? It is a waste of time for any Christian to be worried, threatened or intimidated by anything – anything at all! God is already on our side. Why be fearful when it’s pointless to be so? This is not what God intends for our lives to be like. He wants us to lead lives that are empowered, enriched and filled with Spiritual meaning and significance. Who can bring any charge against such a believer? Who can condemn us if it is God who justifies us? Jesus is interceding for us constantly at the right hand of God. “Who will separate us from the love of Christ?” Can personal trouble or economic hardship separate us from the love of Christ? Can persecution due to social rejection because of our Christianity diminish the love of Christ?

You know, you can never truly be alone when you have Jesus on your side. Can we be separated from the love of God by a lack of food or clothing? Real Christians don’t worry about having enough of life’s essentials, as it is written with the very words of our Lord Jesus, “See the lilies of the field. They neither toil nor spin. And yet I tell you that even King Solomon in all his riches was clothed like one of these”.(Matthew 6, verses 28-29) Won’t God also graciously give us all things when we pray earnestly and sincerely for them as Paul the apostle has written? That’s why worrying is a waste of precious time. Can imminent danger from a weapon separate us from Jesus? No, because no threat can deprive us of God’s love no matter how dangerous it is. As it is written in the book of Psalms 44 and verse 22, “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”

Just as Jesus sacrificed himself for each of us, so we all find ourselves chewed up and spit out by the world that surrounds us. When this happens, and it will, we are to count that as a blessing because circumstances that are beyond our control caused us to emulate Christ whether we were consciously doing so or not. How did we emulate him? By allowing ourselves to be targeted by the world and the things thereof, making ourselves vulnerable in the process even as Jesus made himself vulnerable before Pontius Pilate. Paul then finishes this train of thought in the next 3 verses of Scripture. “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8: 37-39)

We are more than conquerors though Jesus Christ because God made us that way. He has predestined us to be more than conquerors because we are called, called us because we have been justified, and subsequently glorified us because we are justified in the eyes of God through Christ Jesus. And how are we justified? Because Jesus is at the right hand of God interceding for us continuously. Remember that old song by Diana Ross and the Supremes, “ain’t no mountain high enough, no valley low enough and no river wide enough to keep me away from you”. I regard this as a healthy way to look at God, and we can be sure that we are His forever, as it is written, “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.” (John chapter 10, verses 27-30)

There is nothing in the entire universe that can separate us from God. In fact, death actually unites us with Christ. That’s why the fear of death is eliminated by true belief in God through Jesus Christ. In real Christianity death is a time of transition, not an end of all things as we have known them. In the same way, present circumstances over which we have no control can’t come between us and God, nor can future occurrences that we cannot foresee, because God foresees all things. Neither angels nor demons can come between us and God unless God allows it (see the Book of Job). This is great news because it makes us realize that though we may be completely surrounded by evil, God’s love for us – and Divine protection – remains undiminished. Circumstances such as being in captivity can’t separate us from the love of God either. No matter how isolated we may seem to be, Jesus is right there beside us as He intercedes for us to his Father in heaven. Nothing in all of creation can separate us from the love of God that is ours through Christ Jesus our Lord.

So now you have had a practical lesson in maintaining a positive mental attitude from a Spiritual vantage point. By keeping things in their proper perspective we become empowered to live a life that is predestined to be in harmony with God. We are predestined because we have been “called according to His purpose”. We are therefore justified because we are called, and we are already glorified for the life to come before our present lives are even over. This is really great news for all true believers because we can find favor with God through Jesus Christ our Lord. Never again do we need to worry about the outcome of circumstances beyond our control because God is on our side, and He will always be there for us.

So now we are better equipped than ever before for a life that is justified and glorified before God through Jesus our Lord and Savior. Let’s all start living this empowered and victorious life today so we can enjoy the benefits of being called by God. We truly are more than conquerors because through Jesus we have overcome all the adversity that life has to offer. Jesus died and then rose from the dead just so we can have this kind of a victorious eternal life through Him. And this victorious life can be ours on a continuing basis. All we have to do is to humble ourselves and ask for it. That’s the best news of all. Ask God today for this kind of life. It doesn’t matter who we are or what we have done. He can’t wait to grant your request.

This week’s ongoing Biblical study series with Minister Paul J. Bern will be part 2 of Romans chapter 6

Romans Chapter Six part 2

(Verses 15-23)

dont look back
Last week when we left off at verse 14 of Romans chapter 6, we were examining the apostle Paul’s teaching and instructions to the early Roman church. The topic in this case was sin and how it is compensated by grace. The apostle Paul’s teaching on sin and grace here in Romans 6 is an aspect of Christianity that holds true even to this day. With that in mind, let’s begin part 2 of Romans chapter 6, starting at verse 18. “ …offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer the parts of your body to him as instruments of righteousness. For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.” Make yourselves into living sacrifices for Jesus Christ by claiming your inheritance as a part of God’s kingdom, the kingdom of the universe. We have been brought from eternal death to everlasting life by no other means except for the supreme Sacrifice made by the crucifixion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

 

We are no longer under law, Paul wrote, but we are now under grace. There’s that word again, grace, which is defined as unmerited favor from God through Jesus and only through him. Being under law meant being under the traditional Hebrew law known today as the Old Testament, where animal sacrifices were required as atonement for sin. But in these latter times in which we live just prior to Christ’s return, we are under grace because Jesus has already made himself the living sacrifice for us all. As such, it is now our responsibility as Christians to spread this superbly good news as far and wide as we can (such as on the internet), so that others may also share in your newly minted immortality. As we hold that thought, let’s now finish the remainder of today’s study, starting at verse 15.

 

“What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone to obey him as slaves, you are slaves to the one you obey – whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness? But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted, you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness. I put this in human terms because you are weak in your natural selves. Just as you used to offer the parts of your body in slavery to impurity and to ever-increasing wickedness, so now offer them in slavery to righteousness, which leads to holiness. When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the control of righteousness. What benefit did you reap at that time from the things you are now ashamed of? Those things result in death! But now you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6, verses 15-23)

 

Just because we are under grace rather than the Old Law doe not give us an excuse to do whatever suits us at any time. Under no circumstances is grace considered to be a spiritual “get out of jail free” card in some heavenly Monopoly game. “But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted, you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.” Why be a slave to a sinful, miserable, unhappy and unfulfilled life when we can be adopted into the Family of God and become Spiritual slaves to Christ? But even slavery to sin is loosely interpreted here because of the word ‘slavery’, which has a strongly negative connotation throughout the world, and particularly in the US due to Civil War issues.

 

Human slavery is oppressive, but slavery to Jesus is liberating. Jesus said it best when he said, “Come to me, all of you who are heavily laden, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light”. Under the Old Law, there were a lot more than ten commandments. Actually there are over six hundred commandments that had to be followed to the letter. This is exactly what Jesus was referring to when he spoke those most encouraging words 2,000 years ago. Jesus was the fulfillment of the Law of Moses, replacing it with himself for the justification of us all in God’s sight.

 

Just as you used to offer the parts of your body in slavery to impurity and to ever-increasing wickedness, so now offer them in slavery to righteousness, which leads to holiness.” The human body is the Lord’s temple and the heart is the place in which God dwells. Slavery to sin and wickedness leads to eternal death, but that same slavery leads to eternal life when it is directed toward Christ rather than toward the world, which is passing away even as I write this.

What are some basic steps that we can take toward righteousness that leads to holiness? First, unplug your boob tube. Why are you wasting $100.00 per month subscribing to cable TV when there is nothing but trash and stupidity being shown on your screen? Get an internet-only connection and stream faith-based programming instead; there’s tons of it out there. It’s a lot easier to follow Christ if we first disconnect ourselves from this wicked, evil world in which we live. Second, we can do as the apostle Paul did, which is to be full-time ambassadors for Jesus Christ. “Love your neighbor as you love yourself”, as Jesus taught us so well so long ago. It still applies today, and nothing regarding this essential commandment ever goes out of style.

 

“… now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.” There it is again, the holiness that leads to eternal life by being slaves to God instead of our old ways, which was slavery to sin. We can choose eternal death – and a disturbing number of people have chosen exactly that – or we can choose eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. People choose death because they would rather live freely and wantonly without taking any responsibility for themselves, or they can throw away their foolish pride and live for Christ instead of only for themselves. What it all boils down to is this: Is Jesus in charge of our lives or are we in charge? As the prophet Jeremiah wrote, “As for me and my household, we will worship the Lord.” What’s it going to be, people? Him or us? It’s up to you.

 

Today we start a new series on the Book of Romans

All you regular readers out there have been following for quite a few years now, having started this blog back in 2011. I wish to thank you with all my strength, my mind and my soul, each and every one of you! Since then I have reinvented this Web publication twice to make it more appealing for first-time visitors as well as my thousands of followers. The following is an excerpt from my 2017 book, “The Apostles in Plain English Vol. 1: the Apostle Paul” (c) 2017 by rev. Paul J. Bern, all rights reserved To order this or any of my other 4 titles at half price, please visit https://www.amazon.com/author/revpauljbern right away…..

Jews And Non-Jews Are One And The Same

[Romans chapter 1]

Today I will begin a series of studies on the writings of the apostle Paul in the order they appear in the New Testament. Naturally we’ll begin with the book of Romans, since this book elaborates on the apostle Paul’s ministry in great detail (others do as well, but we’ll start with this one because it is the first of Paul’s letters). Bearing that in mind, I will now begin with the first chapter:

Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle and set apart for the gospel of God – the Gospel he promised beforehand through the prophets in the Holy Scriptures regarding his Son, who as to his human nature was a descendant of David, and who through the Spirit of holiness was declared to be the Son of God by His resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord. Through Him and for his name’s sake, we received grace and apostleship to call people from among all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith. And you also are among those who are called to belong to Jesus Christ” . (Romans 1: 1-6)

The first thing that we notice here is the phrase “ …the Gospel he promised beforehand through the prophets in the Holy Scriptures regarding his Son, who as to his human nature was a descendant of David…”. Jesus was in fact a descendant of King David of Jerusalem, the writer of the book of Psalms. Since King David ruled ancient Israel, Jesus was also an Israelite who walked the earth as a Jewish man just as David did. But Paul doesn’t stop there. “Through Him and for his name’s sake, we received grace and apostleship to call people from among all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith. And you also are among those who are called to belong to Jesus Christ”. We have received grace and apostleship to call people from among all the Gentiles! Therefore, we are all apostles like Paul. Paul was a Jewish man educated in the Jewish theological centers of his day. This would be equivalent to modern-day seminaries, and Paul was definitely a Bible scholar. But Paul takes his argument a step further with this next quote.

I am obligated both to Greeks and non-Greeks, both to the wise and the foolish. That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are at Rome. I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written ‘the righteous will live by faith’.” (Romans 1:14-17)

Now let’s compare that with the first quotation from further above. “Through Him and for his name’s sake, we received grace and apostleship to call people from among all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith.” ‘The obedience that comes from faith’ and “the righteous will live by faith” is the same faith that Paul calls “the salvation of everyone who believes”. Also, please note that Paul uses Greeks and Jews as well as non-Greeks and Gentiles interchangeably. Although this is no big deal to the early 21st century Bible student, this was a radical teaching for Paul’s time since the Jews, Greeks and every other nation still considered themselves to be separate nations for nationalistic as well as religious reasons. The phrase “first for the Jew, then for the Gentile” can be taken with a grain of salt since much of the Gospel, including this part, were written by Jewish people.

The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse… (Furthermore) since they did not think it worthwhile to to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind,to do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil, they disobey their parents; they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Although they follow God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.” (Romans 1, verses 18-20; 28-32)

“The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men…”. Translated into 21st century English this would read, ‘The more wicked and evil anyone may harbor in their hearts, the more God will stand against them’. People who are willfully evil, or who are just plain bad individuals for whatever reason (and sometimes for no reason at all), and who do not care whether they hurt anyone or not, aren’t being very smart because they only bring more judgment on themselves. Doing these kinds of things makes an already-miserable life even worse, but there are way too many people who completely miss this. The root cause of this seems to be a hatred of God, or a refusal to even acknowledge His existence, let alone believe in him exclusively as we should.

Paul writes a few lines defining his meaning in the next verse when he wrote, “They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil, they disobey their parents; they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless.” There it is again from Paul’s perspective. Evil and wicked people simply don’t have any sense, which to me is a nice way of saying someone is incurably stupid. Let’s all be on our guard against this, otherwise Satan may steer our lives in such a direction that we cross paths with one of these “ruthless” characters, all of whom are minions of Satan. Since obviously no one wants to be anywhere near to that, let’s be sure and take an internal inventory of ourselves. If any traces or issues concerning any of the things Paul mentioned is found, the best way to repent of whatever it is that presents a problem is to ask Jesus to take it from you.

Sin can sometimes be like kids getting their hands wet when playing outside in the snow, like I used to do when I was little. One day I put my wet hands on a swing-set I used to play on all those decades ago, and they got stuck. My mom had to come out and get my hands unstuck because I was unable. When we have sin in our lives, sometimes people who have been hanging on to certain behaviors and hang-ups have done so for so long that they can’t let go on their own. But if we only ask Jesus to help us get rid of whatever character flaw, personality defect, inadequacy or addiction by taking it from us, he will make up the difference. So we should voluntarily surrender our sins to Jesus by lifting them up with both hands and saying, “Lord Jesus, please take this from me. I don’t want it anymore, but I can’t seem to get rid of it. So please help me, in your holy name I pray. Amen”.

We can all be sure that He will show up, and always with perfect timing, which can often be at the last minute. But when God does that, it is to show us that He was in charge of our lives, situations and circumstances all along. No matter who we are, or who we know, or how much (or little) we know, or how much money we have, God is still in charge of all of it. Be warned that those who put their faith in any of these other things instead of faith in God is living in a state of idolatry, a clear violation of the first two commandments. To avoid eternal death, which will be the fate of all idolaters, seek Jesus Christ, because he is the only correct way to eternal life. And that’s all I want from him. Ask him and He will do the same for you.