“Thou shalt keep therefore his statutes, and his commandments, which I command thee this day, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee, and that thou mayest prolong thy days upon the earth, which the LORD thy God giveth thee, for ever.” Deuteronomy 4:40.
I was recently invited to attend a prayer breakfast at the Will Rogers Garden Exhibition Center in Oklahoma City on August 12, 2018. The event was sponsored by the Men’s Ministry Department of the Oklahoma Conference of SDAs. In attendance were Seventh-day Adventist leaders, pastors, laymen and their guests from across the state. Also present were civic and municipal leaders, judges and law enforcement officials.
There were several speakers, testimonies and special music. Halfway through the event a community relations officer from the Oklahoma City Police Department spoke about the importance of being responsible members of the community. He conveyed to us the problems and crimes that are plaguing society and how it’s up to the fathers, the husbands, the brothers and other male figures to bring the necessary changes that our world desperately needs. It was an inspiring and motivational discourse; but sadly, it lacked any real instructions or steps on what we can do to become outstanding members of the community or how to effect positive change in society.
The final speaker for the event was a Seventh-day Adventist pastor who did not give one of those modern, intellectual, motivational talks that begin with the words, “I saw a Tweet the other day…” No. Thank God he was an old-school, spirit-filled, unapologetic preacher who came to give us an exhortation. He told the men’s ministry group and the local government officials that if everyone would simply follow the Bible and keep God’s commandments (the moral law), then there would be no more crime in the city. There would be no more murders, no more violence, no more robberies, no more rapes, no more fraud and that society would have peace and prosperity.
He then looked at the judges and law enforcement officials and said that they would lose their jobs and be out of work if people would obey God’s word and keep His commandments. Why? He continued by saying that obedience to God would mean that there would be no more need for prisons or any criminal justice systems because God’s commandments were not given to frustrate our liberties but rather to help us obtain the greatest possible happiness and standard of life, ever!
It was encouraging to hear this minister’s preaching because this is what’s at the heart of the Three Angels’ Message of Revelation 14. This is the solemn message that needs to be presented to the world. We must hold up high the banner where is written the “commandments of God and the faith of Jesus” (Revelation 14:12) because we are living in a day of sin and lawlessness. Apostasy and indifference has led men and women to disregard God’s commandments. This is what is opening the doors to all the problems facing our world: pornography, drugs, immorality, crime, violence, greed and vice. We are told that the greatest happiness in life is to follow God and obey Him.
“And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever.” Isaiah 32:17.
Let us keep God’s commandments and encourage others to keep them so that we can enjoy the wonderful and glorious rewards that await the faithful. But if men and women continue to disregard the sacred principles of God’s law, the leaders of society will never be able to quell the floodgate of iniquity that is rapidly filling the earth.
“Courts of justice are corrupt. Rulers are actuated by desire for gain, and love of sensual pleasure. Intemperance has beclouded the faculties of many, so that Satan has almost complete control of them. Jurists are perverted, bribed, deluded. Drunkenness and revelry, passion, envy, dishonesty of every sort, are represented among those who administer the laws. ‘Justice standeth afar off; for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter’ [Isaiah 59:14.] The iniquity and spiritual darkness that prevailed under the supremacy of Rome were the inevitable result of her suppression of the Scriptures; but where is to be found the cause of the widespread infidelity – in the rejection of the law of God” (Great Controversy, p. 586).