Whence Cometh My Help
By Jim Huskins
For nine days in the Fall of 2012, Hurricane Sandy wrought death and destruction. Jamaica, Hispaniola, Cuba, the Bahamas, and Bermuda were devastated. So was the entire US Atlantic Coastline. At least 160 US citizens died. Damage is estimated in the tens of billions.
During the news coverage, a woman in an affluent, New Jersey neighborhood grabbed a reporter’s microphone and issued an impassioned address. “Mr. Obama,” she cried. “We’re suffering. Send us food, send us water, send us medicine, send us generators, send us refrigerators.” I found the scope and tone of her plea astonishing. Emergency agencies provide shelter and supplies following natural disasters, but is it their job to provide expensive infrastructure equipment to individuals?
The mandate for the work of our Federal Government is clear. Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution says that Congress shall have the power to lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts, and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defense and general Welfare of the United States. Congress may borrow Money on the credit of the United States, and regulate Commerce with foreign Nations and among the states. Further authorization is given to coin money, establish Post Offices, build roads, and raise and fund Armies. Walter E. Williams gave this summary in a speech delivered to Hillsdale College in March of 2000. Dr. Williams then comments, “Nowhere in the Constitution do we find authority for up to three-quarters of what Congress taxes and spends for today. There is no constitutional authorization for farm subsidies, bank bailouts, or food stamps…. We have made a significant departure from the constitutional principles of individual freedom and limited government that made us a rich nation in the first place.”
Twenty-two years after that speech, the notions of individual freedom and limited government seem quaint relics. Every American citizen should be asking important questions: Should the Federal Government be allowed unchecked expansion, or should the government be limited? Should we be concerned about technology that facilitates massive intrusion? Should we allow the consortium of private, mega-banks known as the Federal Reserve to continue issuing debt-based currency? Can freedom coexist with a digital currency that will make the Feds a party to our every transaction and give them the ability to decide what we buy, where, and when?
These important questions point to even more significant concerns: Is the current trajectory of an institution that Lincoln described as of, by and for the people, any different from history’s countless regimes that we label totalitarian? Are our elected officials in charge of what is happening, or are they being controlled? Should our government be devoting massive effort and resources to legitimizing and promoting practices that God calls an abomination? When did we vote to allow the Federal bureaucracy to invade privacy, levy oppressive taxation, destroy our economy, promote infanticide, legitimize sexual deviancy, throw open the borders, and facilitate wars in which we have no national interest? Can we depend on such a government to promote our legitimate interests?
God insists that we depend on Him. In Matthew 11:28-30 we read one of the most compelling invitations to dependency: “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
The power in these words flows from the incredible covenant God offered us through Abraham and later clarified through Moses. Perhaps the most astounding summary of God’s promise to care for us is found in Deuteronomy 28:1-14. Read it now! Any who struggles to determine the best way to provide for their needs should meditate on that passage. Jeremiah records several of God’s promises to care for us including 7:23, 24:7, and this divine declaration in 31:33: “For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the LORD; I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people.”
When I point out these passages to some Christians and emphasize the fact that God’s promises are predicated on our obedience, I am often told that we now live under “grace” and that obedience is not necessary. Scripture says that salvation comes to us through grace alone, but lives that please God are based on obedience. Hebrews 8:10 makes it clear that the “new” covenant is merely a better application of the “same old” covenant: “For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my laws into their minds, and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” The Hebrew writer is quoting Jeremiah 31:33.
Jesus paid the price for our sin, but His offer to care for us does not include floating on His coattails. We are taught that “when God looks at me, He sees Christ’s righteousness.” No scripture makes such a claim. When God looks at us, He sees who we are and what we are doing. Romans 2:6-8 says, “He will pay back each person according to his deeds. To those who by perseverance in doing good are seeking glory, honor, and immortality—eternal life. But to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness—wrath and fury.”
When we take on Jesus’ “easy yoke” and “light burden”, we become His “bondservants.” Bondservants are thrilled to be saved by His grace and dependent upon His provision. He is the source of all good things. Bondservants joyfully attempt to express their gratitude by conforming their every action to His call and example.
Jim & Beverly Huskins are members of Obedient Heart Fellowship in McDowell County. Beginning July 2, 2022 Obedient Heart Fellowship will meet at 10:00 Each Sabbath (Seventh Day) in space graciously shared by New Covenant Church in Christ. 2460 US 221 Business N. In Marion, NC. Call for info. 828-460-7913You can read more good Christian news from Jim HERE.