Time for change

Brian Janz

Jesus came to bring change; He came to overthrow the tyranny that oppresses this earth. Do you know how you can be a part of this incredible work?

You walk down the street on a quiet evening, not unlike any other. A newspaper flutters by your feet as a light rain springs up. You pull up your hood and keep walking. Across the street a man is sitting and begging for small change. In the distance you hear sirens and a moment later a police car drives past you, screaming loudly. Thunder rumbles and you continue walking.

There are people arguing outside of shops. Over here, a relationship ends. There, a single mother loses her job. Elsewhere in the city, somebody loses a fortune gambling. Somebody is yelling. Somebody is crying. The greedy politicians and businessmen at the top spread corruption like a smog over the whole scene.

The world is held tightly down under the oppression of sin. It is the root of every problem and every tear and every suffering on the earth. Everywhere you look, all the misery, need, and unrighteousness has its root in sin. The world has been tainted. And as time goes by the taint grows darker and worse. This has all been prophesied by Jesus. (See Matthew 24) But what is His plan with the whole thing?

Deposing the root of the problem

Real change is underway. In fact, it began with Jesus Christ Himself, almost 2000 years ago. In His days there was also greed, crime, corruption, and misery. Israel suffered under the heavy hand of the Roman Empire. They were hoping for a savior. Somebody to come and overthrow the oppressive tyranny and set them free.

He proved to the world that Satan did not have absolute dominion any more.

Not much different from our days, if you think about it. It would be nice if the greedy corporations, tyrannical governments, terrorist groups, and other evils were all thrown down by a mighty, conquering hero.

But Jesus didn’t come to treat the symptoms of the wound. He didn’t come to depose the rulers of this world. He came to attack the root of the problem. He came to defeat sin itself. (1 John 3:8)

And that’s just what He did. When Jesus lived His life in perfect victory over all sin He overthrew the tyrant Satan and showed the world once and for all that humanity need not be in bondage to him. The revolution began quietly, in Jesus’ early life; carried out in humility and simplicity. Jesus defeated Satan by His daily choices to say “no” to sin and refusal to bow down before Satan, what the Bible calls “suffering in the flesh.” (See 1 Peter 4:1) Even when He was dying on the cross, in agony and humiliation, He did not sin. He proved to the world that Satan did not have absolute dominion any more.

Overthrowing the tyrant

That is the enemy we fight.

Disciples choose to react with humility when they are wrong. Disciples choose to bless when they are wronged.

Our war is not against the human tyrants and politicians and sinners of this age. They are merely a symptom of the larger problem. (Ephesians 6:12) The root of the issue is sin itself, and that is the goal of Jesus’ work; the change He came to bring about. He wants to eradicate sin.

So, His disciples take up their cross. They deny their will. They strike against the enemy by taking every thought captive, by refusing to agree with the sin that tempts them. (Colossians 3:5) Disciples choose to react with humility when they are wrong. They choose to bless when they are wronged. They choose to give when they themselves are in need.

When greed, anger, anxiety, pride, jealousy, impurity, and all other sins try to come into their hearts, disciples reject them. They put these thoughts to death. They refuse to agree with those sinful thoughts. They choose to fight! They choose to bring about an overwhelming change!

Jesus on the throne

The goal of this relatively hidden, but mighty movement is to put Jesus on the throne of the earth. When Satan, the ruler of this world, has been defeated in battle after battle, when Jesus’ followers have thoroughly denounced Satan’s power in every area, then God will decide “now it is enough.” Then Satan’s regime will be at an end. God will put Jesus in charge of the earth. (Revelation 19:11)

This is the Second Coming of Christ and it begins the Millennium, a thousand years of peace, joy, and harmony on the earth. (Read more about the Millennium here.)

The answer lies in the culmination of this mighty but hidden work: Jesus’ return.

With Jesus on the throne and the servants of the devil banished then peace and righteousness will be able to spread on the earth. The taint of sin will shrink and shrivel as light bursts through the darkness and a healing begins. Now that Jesus’ disciples have conquered the root of sin within themselves it is time to start cleaning up the symptoms.

Then those people who chose to serve Jesus will walk up to these dictators and these corrupt politicians and the greedy businessmen who oppress and abuse the people and they will throw these lesser tyrants down! They have the power and authority necessary because they have already conquered the great tyrant of sin in themselves.

And as you walk down the street and see all the pain and misery around you, as the rainclouds grow darker above you, you can wonder how all of this will be set right. But the answer lies in the culmination of this mighty but hidden work: Jesus’ return. Then all will be well. The man across the street will no longer have to beg for money. The shouting and arguing will cease. Righteousness will reign, and oppression will be a thing of the past! There will be no more tears and no more suffering.

Will you be along in overthrowing the tyrant of sin?

This post is also available in: Norwegian Bokmål

You might also be interested in our theme page about Overcoming sin.

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