The current political strife seems to be focused around our nation’s debt and whether the “ceiling” ought to be raised or not. This issue brings with it a host of questions regarding our economy which not just a few have deemed struggling.
We are in a tragic situation. Unable to contend with the debts we owe, we are being forced to go into further debt so that we will not default (fail to meet our financial obligation) and face up to our creditors. Some say that this would bring a “fiscal armageddon”. Others argue that it would merely force a decrease in government spending.
Refraining from entering the political fray, for which there are many wiser and more knowledgeable voices, I would like to make a spiritual observation about this situation: In all its seriousness, our nation’s economic strife is merely a shadow of our sin debt, and secondary to the seriousness of our spiritual poverty without Christ. I would like to point out two particular (and interconnected) ways that Christ restores our “economy” and pays our real deficit.
First, Christ restores our Spiritual economy.
Economy refers to the “orderly interplay between the parts of a system or structure”. Our spiritual economy, here, refers to who we are in relation to God and one another.
In Genesis 1, after God created the world and all of its life forms, as well as man and woman in His image, He declared them “very good”. But soon we see our rebellion, our disobedience of God in the garden of Eden. He was specific: “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you will surely die” (Genesis 1:16-17). We sinned against Him by disregarding His one restriction- we insisted on deciding for ourselves what was good, and so rejected His Lordship – and the consequences were cosmic (very far reaching). In doing this, we separated ourselves from God, fallen. The consequences of Adam and Eve’s failures were great. Genesis 3 explains how this hurt not only the way we relate to God but also the way we relate to one another, and it is not long after that we see Cain murdering Abel, and so on.
Yet, Jesus came to save us from sin and death. Through the first adam, sin and death came into the world. Yet, through Christ, also known as the second adam, came life and eventual restoration: 1 Corinthians 15:21-22 “For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive”.
He restores our Spiritual economy by making a way for us to relate rightly – both to God and one another.
In pt. 2 we will look at how Christ restores our Moral economy.