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Discharging All Debts (Romans Sermon 101 of 120)

Discharging All Debts (Romans Sermon 101 of 120)

May 21, 2006 | Andy Davis
Romans 13:8-10
Money and Possessions

Introduction: America - The Debtor Nation

It's a delight to be able to open up Romans 13 again. And as we come to Romans 13:8, we come to the issue of debt. America in ways unimaginable to our forefathers, has become a debtor nation. I looked up on a website called the National Debt Clock, clicked into the national debt of the Federal government, and I'm not going to read all of the digits, but it's $8.3 trillion that our federal government's in debt. It's kind of hard to hear them talking about fiscal responsibility, isn't it? And they took the population of the US and divided out and I now know what my personal responsibility is. It's $28,000.

"Well, Federal government, I don't have it," and probably you don't either because that's your responsibility as well, $28,000. That's staggering. Closer to home, though, is the issue of personal debt. Whether through home or college education or car loans or credit cards. Many, many American people are facing a staggering burden of debt which is greatly affecting the way they live their lives every day, greatly affecting their marriages, greatly affecting their plans for the future. 75,000 people each day in the United States apply for a Visa or a Mastercard. Every day, 75,000 new ones.

Randy Alcorn, in a book that we were reading in our home fellowship, reports that one man in America with an income of only $27,000 a year, owns more than 800 credit cards, and his monthly line of credit is $9 million. I would urge him not to use it. $9 million a month he can spend. The American Credit Counselors Association estimates that the average credit cardholder in the US owes $13,000 to credit card companies, $13,000 in personal debt. Well, in verse eight of Romans 13, Paul gives a simple statement. It says, "Owe no one anything except to love each other, for the one who loves has fulfilled the law." Now today we're going to discuss the issue of debt, godly debts, ungodly debt, how a Christian discharges his debts.

And I think that some of us are going to find few topics as relevant as this one. For some, it's going to be a painful topic because you're in the category of facing a burden of debt and you don't know what to do about it. Perhaps God's word this morning will give you the way out. Now the context of Romans 13:8-10 is Paul's teaching on the Christian life. We saw in the Book of Romans, we have 11 chapters of solid doctrine on how it is that sinners are made right with the holy and perfect God. It is the Gospel, Romans 1-11, more depth than any of us can handle in a thousand lifetimes. But then in Romans 12-16, the Apostle Paul is taking that deep doctrine and applying it to our everyday lives. It's answering the question, "How then shall we live?"

And we've seen it going through verse after verse, Romans 12:1, 2, talking about how we are to present our lives as living sacrifices holy and pleasing to God. That's our spiritual active worship. Talks then about spiritual gifts and how we are to use them to build up the body of Christ. He talks about how Christians should relate to those inside the body of Christ and those outside the body of Christ. Over the last three weeks of preaching in Romans, we saw it in Romans 13 how a Christian should relate to the government, and we began to touch on some of those issues. Now the issue of government was a bit of a digression in the flow of Paul's thought.

I. What a Christian Does Owe

Now he makes what I think is somewhat of a clever transition back to the everyday life through the Christian and dealing with the issue of love within the body of Christ, and he does it on... The connecting point is the issue of debt. If you look at verse seven, talking again about government, he says, "Give everyone what you owe him." So there's that issue of owing or debt. "Give everyone what you owe him. If you owe taxes, pay taxes. If revenue, then revenue. If respect, then respect. If honor, then honor." And then the NIV gives us in verse eight, "Let no debt remain outstanding except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellow man has fulfilled the law." So we see a transition now back into those more common issues of love and the way that we deal with one another in the body of Christ. The transition, the bridge, is the issue of debt of what it is we owe. So that's the context.

We owe Christ our lives!

Now what does a Christian owe? That's an important question to ask. Let's begin with our lives, which we owe to Christ. We owe everything to Jesus Christ, we who are Christians. We owe it all. As the hymn says, "Jesus paid it all. All to him I owe." And that is true. Everything in our lives, we owe to Christ. At one point in our Lord's life and ministry, he was at the home of Simon, a Pharisee, and a notorious woman in that community came in and washed Jesus' feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. An incredible encounter happens then between Jesus and Simon. They're in Luke 7. Says there "When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, 'If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of a woman she is, that she is a sinner.' Jesus answered him, [that is to say he answered Simon's thoughts] 'Simon, I have something to tell you.' 'Tell me, teacher,' he said. 'Two men owed money to a certain money lender. One owed him 500 denarii, the other 50. Neither of them have the money to pay him back, so he canceled the debts of both. Now, which of them will love him more?' Simon replied, 'I suppose the one who had the bigger debt canceled.' 'You have judged correctly,' Jesus said. Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon, 'Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You did not give me a kiss, but this woman from the time I entered has not stopped kissing my feet. You did not put oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet and therefore I tell you her many sins have been forgiven for she loved much. But he who has been forgiven little, loves little.'"

This is a debt of love that we owe to Christ. There should be a sense of every moment of the day that Christ's love constrains us to follow him, to give him everything he commands of us. We owe him everything. He shed his blood on the cross under the wrath of God that we might have eternal life. And what Jesus is saying there is that these displays of love by this woman are appropriate given her sense of the freedom of her debt. She owed a lot and Jesus paid it, and now the rest of her life, she has this sense that she owes Christ everything. We see it in the parable of the 10,000 talents in which the dead is set up at an infinitely, a measuredly high level. We owe 10,000 talents, 750,000 pounds of gold. You can never pay it. Jesus paid it all. We see it in the Lord's prayer, "Forgive us our debts as we also forgive our debtors.

Christ came to pay our debts. He came to pay it off, and so he has at the cross. At the moment that Jesus died in John's gospel, he says the incredible words, "It is finished." In the Greek word, tetelestai, it was written across a bill once the bill had been paid, somewhat like being stamped paid in full. And Jesus paid in full for our sins. Our debts are cancelled.

Paul’s Obligation to Christ

Now Paul the Apostle had a sense of an ongoing obligation or debt to Christ. In Romans 12, or Romans 8:12 though 14, it says, "So then, brothers, we are debtors." Romans 8:12, "not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh, for if we live according to the flesh, if you live according to the flesh, you will die. But if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live, for all who are led by the spirit of God are sons of God."

We are debtors. We owe Christ everything, but we don't owe the flesh anything. And another place, in 1 Corinthians 6, the apostle Paul says, "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have received from God. You are not your own. You were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body." There's a sense in which we were on the auction block. We were slaves and Christ bought us with a price. We are His bond slaves. We are His, for He purchased us. And therefore there is the sense of constant obligation. We owe Christ everything, our bodies, our souls, our time, our gifts and talents, everything.

It's on this very basis that he urges in Romans 12:1, "Therefore I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercies, to present your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God. This is your spiritual act of worship." It's on the basis of what we have received from Christ. We owe him everything. Also there's a sense in which the ongoing stuff of our lives that we are stewards of, they really belong to God, and on judgement day he's going to want all of them back. They're his. So he has loaned them to us and we owe those things back to him and he will ask an accounting. Every matter of stewardship underscores this sense of debt that all we have goes back to God. What do we owe to other Christians? Well, we owe them love. That's what this passage says. Because of all that Christ has done for us, we owe other Christians a debt of love.

We owe our love to other Christians

Look at what it says in verse eight. "Owe nothing. Owe no one anything except to love each other, for the one who loves has fulfilled the law." So there's this sense of continuing debt to one another. We owe each other love, and it's a debt we'll never cease paying. It exists as long as we live in this world. Paul says that if we love one another, we have fulfilled the law of God. Look at verse 9, the commandments. "Do not commit adultery, do not murder, do not steal, do not covet, and whatever other commandment there may be are summed up in this one rule: Love your neighbor as yourself. Love does no harm to its neighbor and therefore love is the fulfillment of the law." Now let me say if you look at those commandments, they are essentially negative, and Paul even underscores the harm aspect, murder and adultery and stealing and lying. These harm another. But I say to you we've been raised to a higher level. It's not enough for us just not to harm our neighbor. We are to be actually laying down our lives for our neighbors. And so the call of love is actually a higher call, and therefore, all of these negative commands that Paul lists here are included in it, but so much more.

Look what Jesus did. You look at the parable of the Good Samaritan and how there was an outflow and outpouring of resources to somebody who needed it. Now Christ put us under this debt of obligation to other Christians when He ministered to us the way He did. Think about the foot washing in John 13:14. He says then, "If I then, your Lord and teacher have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet." Now that word "ought" is a sense of obligation. We owe each other this. We owe each other love. Now, of course, John gets very specific about the nature of how we discharge this debt, in 1 John 3, it says, "This is how we know what love is. Jesus Christ laid down His life for us and we also ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongues but in action and in truth." So this is the way we discharge our debt of love, self-sacrificial giving to meet a need of another person.

Now this debt of love is comprehensive. It's comprehensive in time. There'll never be a point in your Christian life where you say, "That's it. I've fulfilled my debt of love. I don't need to love anymore. The Lord sent an angel to tell me I'm free from the responsibility of loving other people the rest of my life. I've done enough." It's comprehensive in time. The rest of your time here on Earth, you will have this debt of love. It's also comprehensive in scope. Basically anything you have belongs to God, and he may call on you to give it even up to your life for the cause of the gospel, for the cause of your brothers and sisters in Christ.

We especially owe forgiveness, don't we? We especially owe forgiveness. In Matthew 18, Christ teaching on forgiveness mentioned a moment ago, Christ says the fact that the king forgave the servant, put the servant under a different kind of debt, a moral obligation to forgive the debt of his other servant. And when he wouldn't do it, the king hauled that sorry guy back into court, may mess with your ideas of justification, I'm not preaching on Matthew 18 right now, but I'm just telling you what it says, he hauled that guy back in court and this is what he said, "'You wicked servant. I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn't you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?' In anger, his master threw him into jail until he should pay back all he owed." This is what we owe to each other. We owe a debt of love, of service, and of forgiveness to other Christians.

What do we owe to non-Christians? Well, friends, we owe them the gospel. We owe them the gospel. Take a minute and look back, Romans chapter one. By my calculation, this I think is my 100th sermon in Romans, triple digits. Some of you have been here for most of them. I was here for all of them, but way back when, at the beginning of this whole series in Romans, we started with Romans 1 and in 14, Romans 1:14, there Paul talks about his debt. He says, "I am obligated both to Greeks and non-Greeks, both to the wise and the foolish. That is why I'm so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are at Rome, for I am not ashamed of the gospel because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes, first for the Jew, and then for the gentile."

The debt of carrying the gospel to the lost

Paul there in Romans 1:14 is talking about a debt, an obligation he has both to the wise and the foolish, the Greeks and non-Greeks, to everybody, an obligation to preach the gospel, to share the gospel of Christ. Now how did he discharge it? Well, by preaching faithfully to everyone that God providentially brought across his path. We are not obligated personally to preach the gospel to six billion people. We cannot discharge that debt. But we are obligated to make an effort to share the gospel with those that are providentially in our lives.

Martyn Lloyd-Jones talked about this obligation, the sense of duty that we have to share the gospel, and he gave a beautiful illustration. He talked about a man that he knew that was suffering from a painful and crippling arthritic illness. And he did everything he could to try to alleviate his pain and to get some kind of healing or cure from this illness. He would sit in mineral baths and go to spas and try different therapies, but nothing worked until he read of a physician on the continent. I don't remember in what European country, but had developed a special therapy for people who are suffering exactly his kind of illness. He went over there. The man looked at him and said, "I know exactly what your problem is." He prescribed him some medication and some therapy. Within three or four months, he was completely healed.

Some time later, he met another person who was suffering from the exact same illness, the same symptoms, everything. He had a sense of obligation to share with him the information of what had healed him. We owe the gospel. As Jesus said in Matthew 10, "Freely you have received. Freely give." You are trusting in the cross of Christ for the forgiveness of all your sins. It's been given to you as a gift. You owe it to non-Christians to share it with them as well.

II. What a Christian Ought Not Owe

Alright. Well we've talked about what Christians owe. What ought we not to owe? Now I was warned this morning, you're going to be treading on some toes. Look, I hope I'm not treading on anybody's toes, but I'd be happy if Romans 13:8 tread on your toes. I don't mind that. The scripture is here to help us. It's here to bring us to conviction. And I think that this is an area of weakness for Americans today. I think it's an area of trouble.

Debt Crisis in America

We are in a debt crisis in America. Listen to this, Ron Blue, Crown Ministries in a survey that they had access to, said more than half of the Americans they surveyed, listen, had no plans to get out of debt before they died. That's staggering.

They just have accepted the debt they have and are making no plans to get out of it. Sears some time ago started the Discover card. They expected, and their prediction was not that people would use the Discover card in place of Visa and Mastercard, but rather that they just lay the Discover card on top of Visa and Mastercard and go into greater debt. They were absolutely right. The one thing they were wrong about was the amount of increased indebtedness Americans would tolerate. They were way low. They thought it would be something like $35 billion nationwide. It's proved to be three or four times that amount. A financial goal of many families is simply to earn as much as they spend. That's a goal, to get to the point where money in equals money out. Well we already said it's a goal of federal government does not reach.

Last year, in fiscal year 2005, the government spent $319 billion more than it took in. Every day, $2 million more in debt or $2 billion. I'm sorry. The problem for the federal government is significant, but for most Americans, their personal problem is even more pressing. It's immediate. It's in their face every day. Now some time ago, I was reading about a sugar plantation in the Philippines that went around to the neighboring villages and gave to illiterate poor people $150 in a debt-free loan. They could do anything they want with. But why did the plantation do this? Well, it's called debt bondage. Those people would blow it perhaps even in a month or less on things that didn't matter, or maybe even things they needed, but in any case, they now owed $150. To you or me, that's not much, but to them it was an astronomical amount. They were then working on the plantation the rest of their lives. They couldn't get out of it. They could never save enough money to pay off the debt.

Well, when I graduated from college, I got five applications for credit cards in the mail. My alma mater, I guess, sold my name to the companies. And so immediately I'm getting these very flattering letters; Now that you have achieved this high level of achievement etcetera. And they're willing to offer me a credit card. They want me to work on the Chase Manhattan plantation the rest of my life.

You know one thing I found in my research is you know what credit card companies call people like us who desire and actually do pay off credit cards every month and never pay a late fee? They call us deadbeats. Can you believe that? I thought a deadbeat was somebody that didn't pay alimony or child support. Alright. But I'm a deadbeat if I don't pay the plantation owner what I owe him namely the 18% or 21% every year. We're called deadbeats. That's an odd way. Now you can declare bankruptcy. They've loosened up the laws on that. It was in the past. It's like in the Scripture, if you're in debt, you get thrown in prison and you can't get out because you can't make any money from prison. And so it was a big problem, I thought it was unjust, a dead end. And so now they have lenient bankruptcy laws that enable people just to declare a bankruptcy. I watched on one of these talk shows, a guy who had six times his annual salary in discretionary debt. Six times, and they asked him how did you get to that point? He said at a certain point, it didn't matter. So buy another dog, another couch, another whatever. It didn't matter because they're already way more than they could ever pay off. It's a whole mentality there.

Well, this is a major problem. Randy Alcorn said this, if all American evangelical Christians were out of debt, literally hundreds of millions of dollars would be freed up for God's kingdom. Our families would be stronger, because financial pressures caused by indebtedness are major factors in more than half of divorces. There's also the issue of our weakness. What does it look like to a non-Christian world when Christians don't pay their debts? It's a shameful thing.

The nature and history of debt

Well, what is the nature and history of debt? Well, Randy Alcorn said this, "Credit is a grant to pay later for what's received now. Interest is the fee that the creditor receives when the debtor pays for this grant. Whenever a person goes into debt, he obtains money he hasn't earned. In exchange for the money or possessions he presently receives, he mortgages [listen] his future time, energies and assets." That's what it is. Now there was a time that to go into debt was considered a privilege. It wouldn't be extended to the majority of people but just to a certain few. But nowadays that privileges almost seem to be a right, that somehow we are owed the right to go into debt. But there was a time that you had to be wealthy really to even do this. Why do credit card statements that show that you owe $500 allow you to pay $35? Think about it. You don't have to be a genius to figure it out. They want to collect on you, so that you will not be a deadbeat. They want you to pay money to Chase.

Well, there's a problem, a spiritual problem going on here, isn't there? This revolving debt feeds a monster called materialism, idolatry. Basically, the way it works is we see something we want, our covetousness kicks in. In the past, it would have stopped there, because we didn't have the money for it, but now we can go into debt and actually obtain it, and so we feed the monster of discontent. We're not satisfied with what God's provided for us. Perhaps you see maybe some trendy clothes or hot new sound system for the car, no way you have enough money this month but maybe you will in the future, you hope. And so you plunk down the plastic.

The debt mentality: six key assumptions (from Randy Alcorn)

Well, Randy Alcorn said there's six key assumptions with this debt mentality.

First is we need more than God has provided for us. What we have now is not enough, we need more.

Secondly, God doesn't seem to know best what our needs are. So we kind of take over from God and say, "Actually, I need this as well."

Thirdly that God has failed to provide for our needs and forces us to take matters into our own hands.

Fourth, if God doesn't come through the way that we think He should, we can find another way. We'll be creative, create a financing to get the thing we think we need.

Fifth, just because today's income is sufficient to make our debt payments, we are assuming that tomorrow's will be as well.

And finally, we are assuming that our circumstances won't change, that our health will be good, that we'll keep our present job, we'll keep our present or have a greater salary that God will not call us to leave that job for a lower salary or to give more money to Christian work. Making lots of assumptions about the future.

James chapter, 4 deals with all of this presuming on the future. James 4:13 and following, it says, "Now listen, you who say, 'Today or tomorrow we'll go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money,' but you don't even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You're a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that.' As it is you boast and brag and all such boasting is evil." I think that there's a boasting element in credit card debt, a sense in which, definitely, in the future, you'll have enough to pay this debt off.

How to translate Romans 13:8

Now, if you look at verse 8 there are different ways to translate it. KJV gives us, "Owe no man anything, but to love another." NAS follows the same, "Owe nothing to anyone." ESV, "Owe no one anything," and RSV the same thing, "Owe no one anything." The NIV gives us more of an interpretive translation which says, "Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another." The literal Greek translation is basically don't owe anybody anything, that's the simple translation. That's why four of those English translations go with that way. And in that way some Christians believe it is sinful and wrong to ever incur any kind of debt at all. Well, I think that's not true, and I think the Bible can prove that. There's actually a lot of borrowing and lending that goes on in the Bible. A great deal. For example, in Deuteronomy 15, it says, "If there is a poor man among you in any of the towns of the land that the Lord your God is giving you, do not be hard-hearted or tight-fisted towards your poor brother. Rather be open-handed and freely lend him whatever he needs."

Christ says in Luke 6, "If you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners expecting to be repaid in full, but love your enemies, do good to them and lend to them, without expecting to get anything back, then your award will be great and you will be sons of the most high, because He is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked." If borrowing and lending is always evil, why did Christ use that kind of language? And even more significant is the parable of the talents, the five talents, two talent and one talent. Remember the man with the one talent who didn't do anything with it? Went off and hid it in the ground because he thought his master's a hard man.

Do you remember what the master said to him, he said, "So you knew that harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed. Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned, I would have received it back with interest." Again, why would Jesus use that kind of language if borrowing even in the involvement of interest were always sinful? So not all borrowing is bad. There is some borrowing that maybe Christians may need to do. Randy Alcorn lists some things like borrowing to start a small business, perhaps borrowing to get a college education, or a home that you'll live in. But you know Alcorn in his book is always cautious about all debt. If you borrow $200,000 or $180,000 for a $200,000-home, put down $20,000 for the home, 7.25% interest rate, you will buy that home for $442,000. That's about two and a quarter times as much.

We just assume that it's okay to do it just because we can do it. What Alcorn is saying we're not here long. God's resources are precious, be very careful about going into debt. Alcorn gives a series of consequences of debt. First of all, debt lingers, the new boat is fun for a while, but after a while when its engine needs repair and the kids don't want to water ski anymore, it's sitting in the garage and you're still paying on that boat. Debt causes worry and stress, there's a great deal of anxiety. As a matter of fact, it's one of the top three reasons for divorce in America today. Debt causes a denial of reality. Alcorn puts it this way, we drive our bank-financed cars running on credit card gas to open a department store charge account, so we can fill our savings and loan-funded homes with installment-purchased furniture. We're living a lie and we're hawking the future to pay for it.

It's deceptive. We are not at that level and we shouldn't be living at that level. He also gives us a big issue and that is the debt ties up resources and makes him unavailable for the kingdom of God. Do you realize how many, literally, millions and millions of dollars would be released if Christians were not in any credit card debt and gave that money to kingdom work could be incredible?

III. How a Christian Discharges His Debts

Well, as we look at this problem of debt, what can we do about it? First of all, let's go back to how a Christian should discharge their debts. Let's go back to the foundation and back to our relationship with Christ. One of the big problems with looking at the sense of our indebtedness to Christ is that we'll misunderstand salvation. John Piper in his book, Future Grace, said salvation is not a mortgage. What is a mortgage? Well, you get the home and then you make installment payments or you make payments for the rest of your life, and if you don't keep up with the payments, the home will be repossessed from you, taken from you. Some people look on it this way, you're given salvation, but you got to keep cranking out the good works to pay for it, your good works do not pay for Christ's blood.

You should not look at it this way. We are not debtors in that sense, we are children of God, we're adopted in his family, and so therefore, we can't pay off what Jesus did for us. You shouldn't look on your good works that way. Still less is salvation. Like a lay-away plan where you don't even get the thing until the end of your life. If you made enough payments like a Christmas saving plan, then you can go buy it. That is wrong, I believe that's kind of the way the Catholic system looks at it, which I grew up in. It's held back from you and you're making installment payments and then at the end, you get it. It's neither one of those, it's a free gift of grace, grace doesn't cause debt, it pays debts. And so Jesus has paid it all and we are free from debt.

So don't discharge your debt that way. Understand grace and the gift of salvation. Concerning your debt to others, let me say it a practical physical level, don't accept a mentality of indebtedness. Don't think that I can just go into debt all the time. Don't think that it's okay to borrow if there's something you don't have. I was convicted by this. I actually looked around in my office and saw a number of things that I have had for months that I borrowed from brothers and sisters in Christ. I started getting them back to them, like I borrowed a CD from Eric. He was very gracious, he said, "I hadn't even noticed it was missing." I said, "I hadn't even noticed I still had it."  So I praise God for you, Eric and for your gentle spirit with me. I got that CD back. If you're going to borrow something, use it and get it back.

I think borrowing can be a good thing. I think we ought to loan each other expensive equipment that you'll only need once a year, rather than buying it new from Lowe's. I think we should be borrowing from each other and don't expect to get it back in pristine condition, it's gonna get used. This stuff is meant to be used for the Kingdom of God. So I think that kind of indebtedness is fine. Concerning your loans, pay them off on time. If you can, accelerate your payments. Sometimes people say, "Well, if your interest rate is lower than something you could get back from it, it's not... " Don't think like that, because the debt you owe is a real actual burden in your life, and when you're free from it, it can change things in immeasurable ways.

Have a mentality of wanting to pay off as quickly as possible. I think it says something to churches, don't go in debt for building programs. Be very careful about that, be wise about it. So many churches, I know sink down when they overreach themselves concerning building programs, be very, very cautious about that. And if you are already in debt up to your nose, Randy Alcorn's book, Money, Possessions, and Eternity gives something like 12 steps on how to get out of debt. If you want to ask me more about that, some of the specific things that he says, I think it might be beneficial for you. There's no reason for you to be laboring under this in 10, 15 years. You need to start taking steps to get out from under it, beginning with repentance in a whole new way of thinking.

Now, as we come to the time of the Lord's supper, I think it's an incredible opportunity for us to think about what Jesus did for us on the cross. Isn't it a beautiful thing that Jesus' blood shed on the cross is sufficient for all of our debts? I love to meditate on this, as we come to the table, we think about the bread, we think about the wine, how it represents Jesus' body and His blood, shed on the cross for us, given for our sins. The Lord's supper was established for Christians. For those that have trusted in Christ, have testified to that by water baptism, if you are a Christian, you have testified by baptism, have trusted in Christ, you are welcome at the table. If not, I want to urge you to consider coming to Christ for the payment of all of your debts.

Jesus Christ's blood is sufficient for all of our debts. Come to Him and believe in him. Now, as we come to the Lord's supper, I'm going to close here in prayer. I want you to be in an attitude of prayer, be ready to receive the Lord's supper. If there's any sin in your life, it might even be credit card debt or anything related to what I've been preaching about, then confess it to God, and allow his blood shed for you to be sufficient for your forgiveness. Come with me in prayer.

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