I was paragraphs into writing a draft of this article then realized it was for the July issue of the Journal. July 4, Independence Day, when patriotic USA citizens celebrate our inalienable rights as individuals and as members of an independent nation free from tyranny. What can cause this Freedom Train to go off the rails is when those in positions of authority, in any field, and or citizens, are unfaithful rather than faithful to the Laws of the Land. Knowingly Unfaithful to the Law = Believing One Is Above the Law.
We are a Constitutional Republic, NOT a Democracy, as so many who know better, or should, too often misspeak. This means we’re a nation of laws established so that Justice is blind and so we know what’s expected of us and what to expect of others. Especially those we allow into positions of authority, who swear to uphold laws designed to protect liberty and justice for all. People born here are expected to abide by the Laws of the Land. Naturalized citizens consider it a privilege to take an oath to do so. Sadly, that’s no longer always the case. Knowingly Unfaithful to the Law = Believing One Is Above the Law.
Our Constitution similarly informs laws enacted by states, counties, cities, and so forth, so that no political body infringes unfairly or unjustly on We the People. It’s an exceptional document, the only one of its kind. We are the only Republic of our kind—if we can keep it. There is a clear If/Then aspect woven throughout our Constitution: If we apply ourselves (pursuit of happiness) according to the laws, then we can reap the rewards of our efforts; if we break laws, then we reap the consequences. Knowingly Unfaithful to the Law = Believing One Is Above the Law.
There is also a Higher Law and Judge over every nation and every human. All things considered, I add this: Almighty God is over all entities. All will answer to Him. His If/Then statements can be found in Deuteronomy 28 and throughout both Old and New Testaments. As with our Constitution, our acceptance of God Almighty and His Laws is our Covenant with Him, to which He is always faithful, though we are, sadly, not. Psalm 91 addresses those who live in the shelter of the Most High God. Dr. Michael Lake, a true scholar of the Word and Remnant Pastor with a heart afire for our Lord, clarified that “in the shelter” means being found by God as faithful to our Covenant with Him. It’s written in Scripture that God answers prayers of the righteous, and that He counts as righteousness, trust and obedience, of which true obedience requires of us that most uncomfortable attribute called humility. In Andrew Murray’s book, Humility, he said if we want to see what the truest form of this looks like, we must look at the Cross. Jesus humbled Himself in obedience to the Father, even unto death. He was faithful to keep God’s Laws—before and after His Resurrection, as an example for us to follow. Yet, most of us struggle with this each day and need His help to address it.
The fact is we’re human, imperfect, and carnal. Despite this, God gave us Free Will. Why would He do such a thing? It isn’t that Jesus expects any of us to be perfect—He knows we can’t be and why. All throughout the Bible and history, we see the struggle we have with abiding by laws, even God’s, even when we desire to. But this, He told us, changes if we seek His help so as to mature spiritually and, therefore, surrender to obedience to Him. That requires, again, that uncomfortable, unpracticed-for-many-of-us humility to obey His will, not ours. Jesus accomplished many things by coming here in the flesh, on the Cross, in the Resurrection, and through the Pentecost. And He offered us a Free-Will upgrade, so to speak: To choose Him as Savior and Lord, from the heart, because of Who He is and what He did and continues to do for us, and thereby abide by His Laws because of our reverent love for Him, rather than doing so solely to avoid eternal death in Hell. Akin to all of us, born here or not, abiding by the laws in an effort to create and maintain a more perfect, peaceful, productive union than any that has ever existed, rather than merely to avoid prison. Knowingly Unfaithful to the Law = Believing One Is Above the Law.
“Houston, we have a problem.” Just as the Adversary beguiled so many into pagan practices ages ago, he’s now beguiled many into believing Jesus is New Age, a Libertarian of sorts, rather than Who He told and showed us He is throughout the Bible. Forget movie characterizations: Jesus, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was rude to Pharisees and all who were Torah trained, who were obedient in a religious-spirit way and generally without humility or compassion (i. e., listening to a voice other than God’s). He called them names, overturned tables while shouting at merchants, money-changers, rabbis, and others. He lost patience with stubborn and prideful humans. Yes, He is compassionate and forgives the sincere repentant person, but never did He or will He alter His Laws and commands because someone might have their feelings hurt or be offended (look at the effect this is having on our country and lives). Sometimes He told us why we need to obey His commands, sometimes He didn’t. Nor does He have to—He’s God. But He made clear to us in His Word that His Laws, small and great, are for our protection. The Adversary is deviously legalistic. He knows the Laws of God, and he knows us and how easy it is to deceive us, especially through pride.
We can be faithful to our Constitution and maintain its intent, and thereby reap the inherent rewards of honoring the Laws of the Land. We can be faithful to Almighty God, His Laws, and His intent, and reap the blessings He promises and provides to us for doing so. Our current experiences, however, where up is down and down is up, and evil is good and good is evil, are what happens when people in authority, in all areas of life—or any of us—are unfaithful to what the Constitution – and especially our Covenant with Almighty God – requires of us: We are losing the blessings from both and gaining the resulting consequences, aka curses, because . . . Knowingly Unfaithful to the Law = Believing One Is Above the Law.
Links to Inform and Inspire:
Celebrate our Blessings and Country with this song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFt9D6ZIjOQ
(Video – 1:24:15 – “Living in Faith”, Jamie Walden, which I’ve listened to and been fed by twices!) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=unTPMK7iE8k
(Video, Powerful Sermon, Pastor Shane Idleman – “Don’t Have an Attitude with God” – begins at 47:00 mark) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kHAojIVvAKA
(53:22 video, “False Teachers Say ‘Do What Feels Good!’”) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JRkAX09FfIY
(15-minute Audio, Pastor Shane Idleman (includes a prayer for those who’ve felt distant from the Lord) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFd1ylHl2TA
(10:47-min. Video: “Canceling Christianity? They’re Trying, Warns Author”) – https://thenewamerican.com/cancelling-christianity-theyre-trying-warns-author/
Judith LeBlanc says
Another very timely article by Joyce Shafer. Well written, well stated, and so appropriate for the times we are living in. There is an order set up by God whereby men can live good, productive, rewarding lives, following the laws of God first, then the laws of a just, fair government.
When men disregard the laws of God, and when governments disregard or make laws contrary to God’s laws, that is when the order of things breaks down and society starts to fail and fall apart.
Joyce Shafer sees clearly what it takes to make it work the way it is set up to work. She has the ability to explain it simply and clearly so anyone can “get it”.
Thanks for the reminder, Joyce. Another great and much appreciated article. Keep them coming, please.
Joyce L Shafer says
Thank you, Judith! Much appreciated. God’s blessings and peace.