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Personal from the President: January 7, 2021

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Personal from the President

January 7, 2021

Fear not—be about our Father’s business

The unfolding scene on Jan. 6 defied description. You probably saw it live or on the news.

As the world looked on in disbelief and even horror, the Capitol building of the United States shockingly fell under siege as hundreds protested the U.S. presidential election outcome.

Violent chaos erupted in the very halls of the U.S. Capitol. To those watching, one could not help but wonder where this is taking us and our nation. As believers of God’s Word, we in the Church solemnly know of the harsh times prophesied for a world that has rejected that Word—and the authority of the God who inspired it.

We are deeply familiar with these prophecies. But we must always bear in mind the direct words of our Savior and coming King to members of His assembly, the called-out ones: “in me, you may have peace. In the world, you will have tribulation. But take heart, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33 John 16:33These things I have spoken to you, that in me you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
American King James Version×
, English Standard Version, emphasis added throughout).

Regardless of what we may have seen this week, even as we continue to endure turbulent times, we also confidently hold the precious and immovable truth that God is in control. The apostle Paul powerfully confirmed this to the disciples of Jesus Christ in Rome, a capital with an emperor whose predecessors had usurped power, overthrown a republic and set up a dictatorial empire. Even knowing this, Paul wrote to the Roman disciples, “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities” (Romans 13:1 Romans 13:1Let every soul be subject to the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.
American King James Version×
, ESV). Why? “For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.”

On trial for His life, Jesus fearlessly told this same thing to Pilate, a Roman tyrant who had ruthlessly spilled the blood of many Jews: “You would have no authority over me at all unless it had been given you from above” (John 19:11 John 19:11Jesus answered, You could have no power at all against me, except it were given you from above: therefore he that delivered me to you has the greater sin.
American King James Version×
, ESV).

A few decades later Emperor Nero, a cruel dictator, singled out Christians for special persecution. The apostle Peter had a perfect opportunity to rail against the tyrannical Roman government. What did he do?

Peter powerfully stood with Jesus Christ and Paul! “Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, or to governors as sent by him” (1 Peter 2:13-14 1 Peter 2:13-14 [13] Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; [14] Or to governors, as to them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.
American King James Version×
, ESV).

Why should we consider this in the 21st century? Peter continues: “For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God” (verses 15-16).

And how does one live as a servant of God? “Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor” (verse 17). One wonders what readers of Peter’s letter thought, especially those who had directly felt the crushing hand of the Roman emperor and his administrators. But Peter’s direction was—and is—clear.

Now more than ever, we—as a chosen assembly of the Most High God—must refresh and embrace this critical biblical truth!

Let me speak plainly. I know that many in our assembly preferred the current U.S. President and hoped that he would be re-elected. I know that there exist many theories and concerns regarding the veracity of the election process. I personally even warned in previous columns of turbulent times before and after the Nov. 3 election.

Many have been anxious, even fearful, of the outcome of a complete switch of political power at the federal level in the United States. People living in the United States generally enjoy what others in the world regard as a prosperous, even luxurious life. We living in America have been the recipients of multiple and sustained blessings—both physical and spiritual—from God. The unparalleled religious freedom in America serves as an extraordinary platform to preach the gospel of the Kingdom of God. Humanly, we don’t want this to change.

Now we have just come through a trying and difficult year of pandemic and economic upheaval. Many hoped for a return to the economic growth and stability of prior years. With the outcome of the election, many feel threatened.

To compound all of this, today’s violence followed news that a runoff election in Georgia had flipped two Senate seats, effectively handing control of the U.S. Senate to the Democratic Party, who already controlled the House of Representatives. For those anxious about the future of the United States, this only heightened their fears. Nothing appears to stand in the way of a godless progressive agenda, further blurring, even eroding, cherished biblical values.

As of Jan. 20, the world will have the uncertainty of a new American president and a dramatic shift in political power that has not occurred since the 19th century. For some, this has further frayed confidence in the national fabric.

But I want to emphasize that we who are humbly privileged to be part of the spiritual assembly of the living God must set aside fear. Regardless of who is president of the United States, president of the People’s Republic of China or president of the Russian Federation, God is still in control!

As we read in Hebrews: “we can confidently say, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?’” (Hebrews 13:6 Hebrews 13:6So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do to me.
American King James Version×
, ESV).

Focus now on this: the great plan of God, a marvelous undertaking that will result in billions of people becoming eternal members of the family of God, continues unabated.

As we move forward in the days ahead, what should we be concerned with? Consider that we who have been given the precious gift of God’s Holy Spirit, “now we are children of God” (1 John 3:2 1 John 3:2Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it does not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
American King James Version×
).

As beloved children, we have a heavenly Father who is most concerned with each one of us individually (Ephesians 1:17-19 Ephesians 1:17-19 [17] That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: [18] The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, [19] And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,
American King James Version×
), and an Elder Brother who is our Advocate and lives in us, transforming us into a “new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:24 Ephesians 4:24And that you put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
American King James Version×
, ESV).

Even though we may experience fresh trials and challenges—particularly as laws and policies may change—we have no need to fear. Jesus said to His disciples: “Do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. . . Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?” (Luke 12:22 Luke 12:22And he said to his disciples, Therefore I say to you, Take no thought for your life, what you shall eat; neither for the body, what you shall put on.
American King James Version×
, 25-26, New International Version).

God will take care of each and every one of us. After half a century in the ministry of Jesus Christ, I know one thing for certain: God and Jesus Christ deeply love each one of us—the very children of God. They want us to be one with them in love.

In reconvening the Senate on the evening of Sept. 6, Vice President Mike Pence concluded his opening remarks by saying: “Let’s get back to work.”

For we who are privileged to be a part of the amazing assembly of God—a spiritual community that will not only withstand but conquer the very gates of hell (Matthew 16:18 Matthew 16:18And I say also to you, That you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
American King James Version×
)—let us be about our Father’s business!

Comments

 
  • KARS

    Thank you. Very well put into the right prospective. We must stand as Israelites of old, like, the prophet Daniel, Shadrach, Meshac, Abednego, Jesus Christ, and his Apostles of old against the gentile gods of the nations. Always remembering what has been said in the past in the Book of Matthew 23:1¶Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to His disciples,2saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat.
    3“Therefore whatever they tell you to observe, that observe and do, but do not do according to their works; for they say, and do not do.
    As long as the authorities keep the Commandments of our Heavenly Father we obey, but if not, then we do not.