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WE NEED TO take seriously our dependence on God. Here is what Paul told the Christians in Colosse:

Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation, for through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see—such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through him and for him. He existed before anything else, and he holds all creation together. (Colossians 1:15-17 NLT [emphasis mine])

God brought all things into existence, and they continue to exist today only because He is still holding them all together. But what would happen if God were to loosen His grip on things? Has He ever done it? Will He do it? I have more to say about that. But first consider the following.

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God has continued to maintain order in Creation because He loves us. But God is not merely the God of Love. He is also the God of justice. And the Bible tells us that in the last days God’s judgment will fall upon not only one nation but also the entire world. And experiencing God’s wrath will be chaotic.

Regardless of what many people say—like it or not—our Creator is still the One who sets the standards under which we are expected to live. And although He is patient and longsuffering, throughout the Bible we read of God holding people accountable for ignoring those standards.

As Creator, God makes the rules. And as the ultimate judge, God has the right to decide when to correct or punish people for breaking them. He has done that in the past, and since God never changes (Malachi 3:6), there is no reason to believe He will not do it in the future.

We need to understand that.

We are indeed blessed to know Him as the God of Love. But we must not take His love for granted. For like good parents, who hold their children accountable and punish them for disobedience, God—our Father—will do the same with His children (Hebrews 12:5-6).

So what can happen when God’s children disobey Him? Here is a portion of Moses’ instructions to the Children of Israel before God allowed them to enter the Promised Land.

Look, today I am giving you the choice between a blessing and a curse! You will be blessed if you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today. But you will be cursed if you reject the commands of the Lord your God and turn away from him and worship gods you have not known before. (Deuteronomy 11:26-28 NLT)

It was their choice to either obey or disobey God. They initially obeyed and honored God, and they enjoyed God’s blessings for a long time. But they finally chose to turn away from Him, and by doing so they brought a curse down upon their heads.

God slackened His grip on the things that provided their comfort and brought order to their lives. He stopped blessing the work of their hands. And their crops failed because the rain stopped falling on their land. Abundance was replaced with shortages. Prosperity was replaced by poverty.

The broken relationship between the Israelites and their Creator introduced misery and chaos into their lives. God no longer ensured their protection, and eventually their enemies emerged from the chaos. Their adversaries overcame them, destroyed their cities, and enslaved them.

Indeed, God began letting go. He no longer blessed and held their society together, and their world regressed into turmoil and disorder.

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In the Genesis account of Creation, we read, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters” (Genesis 1:1-2 NLT).

As for our world’s existence before Creation, the Bible tells us there was generally nothing to be seen that we would recognize. God brought order out of chaos when He created the heavens and the earth. And I know of no better Scripture to illustrate that than this verse from Genesis:

Then the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nostrils, and the man became a living person. (Genesis 2:7 NLT)

Only God has such power. Only He can bring something so complex and marvelous out of such a simple substance and give it life. Only God can create all we know and then keep it in working order for millennia.

We have always, and will always, be dependent on God to both establish and maintain order. We cannot expect to continue enjoying an organized, orderly, and thriving existence without His involvement and blessings in our lives.

Similar to the Israelites, we in the United States have experienced God’s blessings for many years. God has fulfilled His intention to bless those whose God is the Lord (Psalm 33:12). But for way too many years Americans have been progressively rejecting both God’s rule and His ways.

Because of that, disorder and confusion are on the rise. And if people continue to reject God and His standards, it will only get more chaotic as God stops holding things together for those who ignore His standards, His ways, and His very existence.

For many years now, in their hearts people in America and around the world have been shaking their fists toward heaven and telling God, “We will choose our own way. We will write our own laws. We will legislate our own morality. We will live as we see fit. We don’t need you!”

But we DO need God. We desperately need Him, because disorder and chaos threatens to engulf our nation and destroy people’s lives. So I’m not ashamed to publically offer the following prayer and invite others to make it theirs as well.

Oh God, Forgive us! We repent of trying to establish our own way without you. We will allow you to set the standards. We will accept them and live to please you. Oh Lord! WE NEED YOU! We need YOU to keep holding things together for us. Please don’t let go!

 

 
L. Edward Hazelbaker
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