by Tim Hall
**Our nation’s debt isn’t the most worrisome problem we face.**
Buyer’s remorse is the label for that knot we feel in our stomachs after making a big purchase. Upon committing to make large payments each month for several years, many consumers have trouble sleeping. Can they really make those payments?
Citizens of the United States are fidgeting more than usual in recent weeks. With the economic downturn we’ve seen, jobs have been lost and tax revenues have shrunk. On top of that the federal government has spent many billions of dollars trying to jump start the economy.
Matt Miles of Colorado can be thanked for some of this anxiety. He recently invented a new calculator so he could show our nation’s indebtedness (almost $12 trillion as of the first of September).
Imagine that: no known calculator could display 16 digits, the amount of numbers needed to show our debt. (I hope you’re not reading this at bedtime!)
There is a debt that should worry us more. Our sins are violations of God’s laws. If nothing is done to make things right, we’ll reap the reward of our sins, described so bluntly by Paul: “For the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23, NKJV).
But how can a sin-debt be paid? In times past people offered animals as sacrifices for their sins. Should we try that approach? Don’t bother, said the Hebrew writer: “For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sin” (Hebrews 10:4).
There is one way, and one way only, to have our debt paid to God. The Hebrew writer went on to talk about that option:
“But this man [Christ], after he had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God” (Hebrews 10:12). And what was Christ’s sacrifice? “Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with his own blood he entered the most holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption” (Hebrews 9:12).
Talk about a bailout! Jesus paid the debt of all mankind when he sacrificed his innocent life. Those who come to him will find their accounts paid in full. That helps us to understand the full text of Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
I don’t know how our nation will ever get out of debt. But I have peace in knowing that my greatest debt — my debt to God for my sins — has already been taken care of. I have that peace because I am in Christ.
by Tim Hall