The Debt Ceiling

Season 5
Episode Number
Release Date
May 27, 2023
GenesisNoahJoseph-OTMatthewLukeParablesProphecyCurrent EventsRevelation
25 “For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is life not more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the sky, that they do not sow, nor reap, nor gather crops into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more important than they? 27 And which of you by worrying can add a single day to his life’s span? 28 And why are you worried about clothing? Notice how the lilies of the field grow; they do not labor nor do they spin thread for cloth29 yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! 31 Do not worry then, saying, ‘What are we to eat?’ or ‘What are we to drink?’ or ‘What are we to wear for clothing?’ 32 For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided to you.

34 “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

📚 Matthew 6:25-34

Biblical Preparation

Matthew 25: The 10 Virgins

In this parable there are 10 women waiting on their groom. Five are referred to as foolish because they do not bring enough oil for their lamps and have to run out to gather oil. This causes them to miss the wedding. Throughout the Bible we are told that the church is the Bride of Christ and Christ is the Groom. The point of the parable is that we don’t want to miss our joining to Christ because we aren’t prepared.

The implication of this has a lot more to do with spiritual preparation and our relationship with Him than it does with gathering physical things. Note also that oil in the Bible was used to anoint things, to make them holy. The wise virgins were in possession of the anointing, but the foolish ones were not.

Genesis 6: Noah & the Ark

God instructions Noah builds an ark to protect him, his family, and the animals during the flood. This definitely took physical preparation. In the episode I said it took him 100+ years to build it but an article in Answers in Genesis has me questioning that number.[1] Nonetheless, he didn’t put it together overnight or even over a year. This is probably the best example in the Bible that would support the idea of preparing for the end.

I do want to point out a small but major difference between Noah’s preparation for the end and what people are proposing for an end time scenario. During the time that Noah was preparing, sin was running unchecked in the world, but everything was moving along “as normal.” Everyone except Noah was living without worry or concern. Once the flood came, all of these people were dead. If we parallel this to end time prophecy, Noah’s period of preparation would have been during the tribulation when the saints are getting prosecuted because the next thing is the death of the wicked. However, we know that during the tribulation those without the Mark of the Beast will not be able to buy or sell—thus preparing physical things would be unlikely. Even if the saints prepared before the tribulation, we will be persecuted during the tribulation. The likelihood that you could peacefully use your prepared good like Noah did is much smaller. In Noah’s situation, after all his preparation was finished the population of the world consisted of only him and his family. For us, after we would finish preparation essentially the whole world would be against us, but they’d be alive and in power.

37 But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

38 For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark,

39 And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. 📚Matthew 24:37-39 KJV

Genesis 41: The Famine in Egypt

Joseph interprets Pharaoh’s dream to learn that there will be 7 years of plenty and 7 years of famine. In response Joseph sets up a storage of grain to get them through the famine. Note that this is a government program. They were not giving the food to the people—they sold to the people. So the government was prepared, but only those with money would be able to buy food (the same way only those with money could afford land to grow food in the first place). Also, the storehouses were built by taking the grain of the people—Joseph didn’t leave it to each house to store their own food and ration out to themselves as they saw fit, he took 1/5 of their harvest, stored it, and they had to buy it during the famine.

And the famine was over all the face of the earth: And Joseph opened all the storehouses, and sold unto the Egyptians; and the famine waxed sore in the land of Egypt.

📚 Genesis 41:56 KJV

Luke 12:13-21: The Rich Man

In this parable, Messiah tells us that there was a man who was very blessed and had such a great harvest he ran out of room to store his excess. Instead of giving it to the poor, he ordered his servants to build bigger storehouses so he could “take it easy.” God chastises the man and declares that he will die that very night without enjoying the fruits of his labor. Messiah tells us that the moral is to store our treasure in the Kingdom, not on Earth.

Often when this parable is taught, pastors contextualize it in terms of riches and money. While I can certainly see the parallels, the passage is literally talking about storing food (which is a different kind of wealth or richness). It’s explicitly saying that storing up food so that we can kick back and relax is “not rich toward God” (per the KJV translation).

Matthew 6: Do Not Worry About Tomorrow

Messiah gives tells the disciples not be anxious about tomorrow in Matthew 6:25-34. This advice follows a discussion about not laying up treasures on Earth and not serving two masters. We are to have faith and trust that our Heavenly Father will take care of our needs—this does not mean be reckless, however.

The Exodus

The Exodus has many applications to our lives; not only does it point forward to the Messiah and the Gospels, but it’s a pretty good allegory for a believer’s journey:

  1. We are in bondage to sin (in Egypt)
  2. Messiah delivers us from sin/Satan (as Moses delivered—or rather announces the deliverance of—Israel from Pharaoh)
  3. We detach from the ways of the world to be children of the Spirit instead of the flesh (just as the Israelites flee civilization in Egypt to be in the wilderness)
  4. We falter in our faith or habits and repent in a seemingly constant loop (just as Israel flip flopped between losing faith and declaring their loyalty to The Most High)
  5. Eventually we end up in the Kingdom (just as Israel’s journey led them to The Promised land)

It also has parallels to end time prophecy:

  1. The Israelites were in a kingdom that did not respect nor adhere to their religious beliefs (every day we see animosity toward and intolerance of Christian beliefs[2])
  2. God calls His people out of Egypt to come to His Promised Land (in Revelation we are told to come out of Babylon, into His Kingdom)
  3. Before the Israelites can leave, God shows His sovereignty with plagues and calamity (in Revelation we see many plagues and calamities leading up to the end)
  4. When Israel leaves they are pursued (Revelation 12 talks about persecution and the dragon persecuting the Church)
  5. Israel dwells in the wilderness for a while (Revelation 12 tells us the Church dwells in the wilderness for some time)
  6. The end result is God’s people in covenant with Him in the place He promised them (in Revelation the end result is the Church in New Jerusalem with access to the Tree of Life and the Throne of God, just as He promised us)

So, how did the Israelites prepare to leave Egypt? The didn’t really. Each family had the first Passover during the tenth plague, but the next day when Pharaoh said they could go, they did not hesitate. The Feast of Unleavened Bread harkens back to the fact that they left too hastily to prepare leavened bread. The Israelites simply followed Moses into the wilderness assuming either God or Moses would take care of them. They did not spend time before or during the 10 plagues packing food and money… Each person who stepped out of Egypt had faith that the Most High had something better for them and would take care of them during the transition. He fed them in the wilderness, so there was no need for them to have packed food.

Mental and Spiritual Preparation

In the wilderness, the Israelites quickly became frustrated and wanted to return to the “luxuries” they had in Egypt. Despite being enslaved, there was stability and familiarity there. When I first read Exodus it seemed insane to hear them complaining, but as I have spent more time living and developing my relationship with the Father, I relate to them.

As a person who works in corporate America, it’s very stabilizing to have the same check every two weeks. This is why people stay in the “rat race.” Branching out in to the unknown is scary.

The Israelites may not have been living in freedom and luxury in Egypt, but they had enough freedom that when God commanded them to kill a lamb and put the blood over the door they were able to do so. (I point this out for the contrast that there is no way my ancestors who were enslaved here in the U.S. would have been able to pull that off.) When the Israelites are in the wilderness, the manna that God gives them is definitely vegetarian, probably vegan—and the Israelites want meat! I don’t know what manna tastes like but I liken it to oatmeal: bland but nutritious and filling. Imagine cutting out coffee, juice, sugary drinks—anything that requires a kitchen to prepare. Imagine cutting out processed food, baked goods, things not grown in your region… Many of these foods are actually addictive![5][6][7][8] Imagine that tomorrow you fled into the “wilderness” of the US to find freedom and were sustained by drinking water and eating oatmeal for 40 years. You too would question your sanity, look back, and ask yourself “was it really that bad?”

When the end does come,—whether its spurred by the economic crisis or something else entirely, whether its in two weeks or in two decades or in two centuries—our greatest struggle will be leaving the status quo and trusting in the Most High to take care of us. The idea that we can prepare a bunker, stockpile food and money, live fully off grid, etc. are all ways that we take matters in to our own hands instead of trusting Him to get us through it. Sure, we shouldn’t spend every dime we have and it is both rewarding and healthier to grow our own food, however these actions will not exempt us from discomfort in the end.

When Buying & Selling Cease

The book of Revelation tells us that only those who take the Mark of the Beast will be able to buy or sell and all others will be persecuted. This means that even if you save six months worth your salary, you will not be able to use it. You will not be able to pay rent or pay a mortgage, but even if you saw the economic crisis coming a decade ago, bought a home, and paid it off—you still owe taxes on the house. Most places in the US require any home dwelling to be connected to water, sewer, and power or they will condemn it as not fit for habitation.[3] In TX, I lived in the country outside of the city limits so my house had a septic tank (instead of city sewer) and law still dictated that I must be on a maintenance contract for the septic tank. The company that maintained it was required to inspect it once a quarter and file a report with the county; failure to do so could result legal consequence—including the condemnation or confiscation of my house. Similarly, my neighbor had solar panels but was still required to tie in to the power company who take his power and route it back through the grid. There is a flat fee for service he had to pay and then they credited him for the power he generated. However, due to the fact that they spend money to maintain power lines and employ people, they price of the power they provide is slightly higher than the reimbursement they give for power generated. Long short short, he still has to pay for power. Every video I’ve ever seen of people truly living off grid is of people who live in a country other than the United States of America!

The only way you’re going to escape the cost of simply living in the US is if you live in a camper or a tent. It’s probably the cheapest alternative too considering that it costs money to buy land, solar panels, houses, etc. However, a camper is still a vehicle—it requires gas, insurance and up-to-date tags. You won’t be able to buy gas so you’ll need to find a place to park it—land you own goes back to paying taxes, plus a lot of land has restrictions about what can be on it. In addition, most modern cars have GPS tracking and location on them. If society is persecuting believers, driving around in a car is a sure way to get found quickly…

I am NOT pointing this out to scare you or advising you to throw caution to the wind. Being financially prudent is a good thing. Growing your own food is a good thing. Living off grid is a good thing. However it will not save you. The only way we will make it through is by leaning on the Most High God.

Keeping it in Perspective

The problem I have with people focusing on the economic crisis as it relates to prophecy is the narrative of storing up to protect yourself. Imagine you’ve built your home way out in the wilderness and have a garden with all the foods you enjoy, but you are being called to flee… Are you ready to leave all your preparation behind? As someone in the process of selling a home and replacing that home, I know first hand how hard it is to let go. I also know how easy it is to get attached to the things we’ve put a lot of work in to. I miss my garden (and my 2.75% interest rate!), but I was being called closer to home so I had to let go. The focus on prophecy fulfillment should not be on preparing for the fulfillment but how to take leaps of faith and trust in God during unstable moments in your life. Last, but not least, fear is not of God—if your primary reason for doing something is out of fear or anxiety, it’s not from God.[4]

References and Footnotes

  1. Bodie Hodge. “How Long Did It Take Noah To Build The Ark”. Answers in Genesis. June 2010; visited May 2023
  2. Much of this is due to the traditional stance of Christianity as it relates to the LGBT+ community, however a large chunk is also due to a counterfeit version of Christianity that is burdened with hypocrisy (among other things).
  3. Emma Nelson. “Failing to pay water bill can get your house condemned in St. Paul”. Star Tribune. April 27, 2019
  4. 2 Timothy 1:7
  5. Robert H Lustig. “Ultraprocessed Food: Addictive, Toxic, and Ready for Regulation”. Nutrients. November 2020
  6. Why Are Certain Foods so Addictive?”. Cleveland Clinic. March 4, 2021
  7. 4 Sneakily Addictive Everyday Substances”. Renaissance Recovery Center; visited May 2023
  8. Dasani’s FAQ page confirms that they do have “negligible” salt in their water due to the process they use 🤷🏾‍♀️ I also confirmed that while salt is not listed as an addictive substance it does have addictive properties from a peer reviewed article: “Salt addiction: a different kind of addiction” by Yalcin Tekol.

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