Eternal Savior Lutheran Church

A member of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod

2688 North Park Drive
Lafayette, CO 80026
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August 21 – Avoiding Disaster And Ruin

“My son, fear the LORD and the king, and do not join with those who do otherwise, for disaster will arise suddenly from them, and who knows the ruin that will come from them both?” Proverbs 24:21,22

Devotional Thought For The Day

There is immense discussion among the commentators as to how the various components of thought are interrelated in these two verses. First, whether “fear of the LORD” also implies and requires “fear of the king.” In other words, does religious faithfulness require patriotic faithfulness to government? Scripture clearly asserts that it does, with the lone exception being when government requires that we disobey the Word of God. Nonetheless, the warning of disaster arising applies equally to those rejecting the LORD [His Word] and to those involved in disloyalty to secular authority [which comes from God].

Another discussion ensues regarding the expression “those who do otherwise.” The KJV and other translations understand this to mean those who are “given to change.” It would seem strange that the mere inclination to change should fall under such dire warning – especially since there are many encouragements in God’s Word to “change” away from wicked thoughts and behaviors. So it seems more reasonable to understand that the warning applies to those who forsake the theological and spiritual integrity of God’s Word and those who refuse proper loyalty to the secular authorities established by God. Change for the sake of change, “frivolous” change, however, also generally falls under this stricture, for the vast majority of “traditions” have sound and moral bases.

It is of course a dangerous and treacherous world that we live in, also for those who remain loyal to God. Every day Christians in various parts of the world are persecuted, injured, and even killed for their faithfulness to God. Whenever “civil disobedience” is required out of deference for God’s Word we must be prepared to suffer consequences from wicked authorities. Politics and political loyalties are also dangerous and treacherous, especially where revolutions are brewing and civil wars are being fought. In America the ultimate secular “authority” is our Constitution – which means that our loyalties are not merely personal, but ideological. This results in “patriotism” being a far more complex and difficult matter.

Regardless of any negative consequences we may suffer for remaining faithful to God, those who know and believe His love in Christ Jesus and who continue in Christ’s Word, have eternal life – and all will ultimately turn out very well for them. The same cannot be said for those who reject God, for “he that believeth not the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” [Jn. 3:36] Therefore, it is always the height of political and national loyalty to remain faithful in our discipleship to the Lord Jesus Christ – regardless of consequences, so that others might come to the knowledge of the truth and be saved through faith in Jesus. Such faith will also move them to loyalty to God and His Word, which brings blessings even in this life, both personally and corporately. May God grant such blessedness to us and to all people everywhere!

Prayer For The Day

Dear Lord Jesus Christ, grant us wisdom to abide in faithfulness to Your Word. Grant us secular leaders to whom we can also be submissive and obedient, and protect us when we must stand against others for the sake of Your Word. Grant our nation a renewal of faith and loyalty to You that we not fall into disaster and ruin. Amen.