The Debt Collector

All Scriptures quotations are from “Ang Bagong Ang Biblia” 2001 (Tagalog).

Col. 2:13-14 na pinawi ang sulat-kamay [o talaan ng pagkakautang] na laban sa atin na nasa mga tuntuning salungat sa atin, at ito’y kanyang inalis at ipinako sa krus.

Rom 6:23 Sapagkat ang kabayaran ng kasalanan ay kamatayan;

Today, I would like to speak to everyone regarding the subject of debt. is anyone among you in debt? Not only will you be able to relate to this topic, but also, I would like to say that this message is for you.

The concept of debt is something that is not foreign to all of us. In fact, from the base level of our society to those in the higher ranks, everyone is under some sort of debt one way or the other. we are all familiar with every possible channel of acquiring debt, from known sources (you’ll see them sporting red shirts, sometimes blue, depending on the company that they represent) in shopping centers, to credit cards and those who advertise themselves on social media.

We acquire these debts for the very reason that “we want to obtain something”. Be it an appliance, or the latest gadget. We want to have them. and to the majority, they know that the only way for them to obtain these things instantly is through means of debt. Sure, you can call them “installments” or “credit” or however you want to call them, but the underlying principle behind it all is that you are putting yourself in debt, by borrowing something now with the intention of paying it at a later time.

After we got that very thing that we want, a month after, the company (to which you owe the money) will send you a bill for what you owe them, giving you a date on which you need to pay the amount on time, otherwise, there will be consequences.

Some are capable of paying these debts on time, and even to the point of paying the debt off. But there are also those who are (1) incapable to pay the debt and (2) though they are capable, they are not able to pay for what is due on the date that was given. Both of which result in a certain kind of penalty depending on who they owe the money to. From merely incurring interests that piles up one bill after another, to outright shaming borrower by sending text blasts to all of the borrower’s contacts, and even threatening the borrower, these credit providing, money lending companies will go to lengths just to get back the money that was owed to them. We’ve seen this happen in social media, in fact, this may have happened to some of the people that you knew. or worse; you may have actually experienced it. I pray that none of us are currently going through anything like this at this very moment.

Now, some of you may say, “I am not under some kind of debt whatsoever. My house mortgage has been fully paid. My car has been paid off. All of our possessions from gadgets to appliances, I/we pay using cash so that we’ll owe no one nothing”.

Sure. I’ll grant you that. but I must tell you, dear friend, that you owe someone something. And one day, the debt collector will come for you. To whom are you indebted, and what do you owe Him you ask? None other than the Infinitely Holy, and Righteous God.

Our Debt

Rom. 3:10, 23, Exo. 20

gaya ng nasusulat, “Walang matuwid, wala, wala kahit isa; (Rom. 3:10) yamang ang lahat ay nagkasala, (v.23)

We are sinners. Not only because of what we do but because our very hearts are sinful.

How do we know that this is true? can you prove to me that I have truly sinned? To which I say, we only need to go back to a few of the 10 Commandments to validate whether this claim is true or not?

“Huwag kang magnanakaw. (Exo 20:15)

Have we stolen anything regardless of the amount at some point in our lives? It is not the amount that is being judged & will be judged but the very act itself.

“Huwag kang magiging sinungaling na saksi laban sa iyong kapwa (Exo 20:16)

How many lies (white lies included) have you told your entire life? Again, it is not the number of times, nor the intent with which you lied that is being judged & will be judged but the very act itself.

Now that is 2 out of 10. and the book of James 2:10-11 states this;

10 Sapagkat sinumang tumutupad ng buong kautusan, subalit lumalabag sa isa, ay nagkakasala sa lahat. 11 Sapagkat siya na nagsabi, “Huwag kang mangalunya,” ay nagsabi rin, “Huwag kang papatay.” Ngayon, kung ikaw ay hindi nangangalunya, ngunit pumapatay ka, ikaw ay lumalabag sa kautusan.

To put it simply, if we fail on one of the ten & we fail the rest. All or nothing.

Now let’s back up a little bit with the concept of being in debt. Why, and how do we get ourselves into this situation of debt again? Ah, it is because we want to gratify and satisfy ourselves immediately with something that does not belong to us, by means of something that is beyond our capacity to pay for. The Bible calls it covetousness according to Exo. 20:17

17 “Huwag mong iimbutin ang bahay ng iyong kapwa; huwag mong iimbutin ang asawa ng iyong kapwa, o ang kanyang aliping lalaki o ang kanyang aliping babae, o ang kanyang baka, o ang kanyang asno, o ang anumang bagay ng iyong kapwa.” 

That’s 3 out of 10. I would like to go further just so we can be made aware of how much debt and sin we owe God.

“Huwag kang mangangalunya. (Exo. 20:14)

27 “Narinig ninyo na sinabi, ‘Huwag kang mangangalunya.’ 28 Ngunit sinasabi ko sa inyo, na ang bawat tumitingin sa isang babae na may pagnanasa ay nagkasala na sa kanya ng pangangalunya sa kanyang puso. (Mt. 5:27-28)

The youth these days wanted something that does not belong to them by committing sex outside of marriage. Sex is only honorable within the context & confines of marriage, and the reason why they are committing this transgression against God is that “they can’t wait” and “they want it NOW”.

I’ll go for one more, then I’ll move forward.

“Huwag mong babanggitin ang pangalan ng Panginoon mong Diyos sa walang kabuluhan, sapagkat hindi pawawalang-sala ng Panginoon ang sinumang gumagamit ng kanyang pangalan sa walang kabuluhan. (Exo. 20:7)

How many times have you used God’s Name in vain by saying “OMG”?

Now, earlier, I did say, not only are we sinning against God because of WHAT WE DO, but ultimately, this is because OUR HEART ITSELF IS SINFUL.

18 Ngunit ang mga bagay na lumalabas sa bibig ay nagmumula sa puso at siyang nagpaparumi sa tao. 19 Sapagkat nagmumula sa puso ang masasamang pag-iisip, pagpatay, pangangalunya, pakikiapid, pagnanakaw, pagsaksi sa kasinungalingan, at paglapastangan. 20 Ito ang mga bagay na nagpaparumi sa tao; (Mt. 15:18-20a)

The Due Payment/Penalty of Our Debt

27 At yamang itinakda sa mga tao ang mamatay na minsan, at pagkatapos nito ay ang paghuhukom, (Heb. 9:27)

23 Sapagkat ang kabayaran ng kasalanan ay kamatayan; (Rom. 6:23a)

So what these texts are saying to put simply is this; the reason why we will die one day (we do not know when and how), is because we have sinned against God.

Not only will we pay for this debt through our physical death, but also through a death that is eternal.

9 Hindi ba ninyo nalalaman na ang mga masasamang tao ay hindi magmamana ng kaharian ng Diyos? Huwag kayong padaya! Ang mga mapakiapid, mga sumasamba sa diyus-diyosan, mga mangangalunya, mga binabae, mga nakikiapid sa kapwa lalaki, 10 mga magnanakaw, masasakim, mga maglalasing, mga mapagmura, o ang mga manggagantso ay hindi magmamana ng kaharian ng Diyos. (1Cor. 6:9-10)

8 Ngunit sa mga duwag, sa mga hindi nananampalataya, mga karumaldumal, mga mamamatay-tao, mga mapakiapid, mga mangkukulam, mga sumasamba sa mga diyus-diyosan, at sa lahat na mga sinungaling, ang kanilang bahagi ay sa lawa na nagliliyab sa apoy at asupre, na siyang ikalawang kamatayan.” (Rev. 21:8)

Think about this for a second. When the due date of our debt comes and we have nothing to pay for what we owe, what is the first thing that will come to our minds just so we can settle it on time? The answer; “borrow again from another person” just so we will not be penalized by the credit/lending company.

But is this the right way? The answer is a resounding no. You do not pay a debt with another debt.

Paying God back with our good works means nothing to Him, and we only sin further against Him by doing so.

Kaming lahat ay naging gaya ng isang marumi, at ang lahat naming katuwiran ay naging parang maruming kasuotan. (Isa. 64:6)

Even in/with our best intentions, God still regards us as evil.

9 Mayroon bang tao sa inyo, na kung humingi ng tinapay sa kanya ang kanyang anak ay bato ang ibibigay? 10 O kung humingi siya ng isda ay bibigyan niya ito ng ahas? 11 Kung kayo nga na masasama ay marunong magbigay ng mabubuting kaloob sa inyong mga anak, gaano pa kaya ang inyong Ama na nasa langit ang magbigay ng mabubuting bagay sa mga humihingi sa kanya? (Mt. 7:9-11)

How can we pay off this debt then? The answer; someone needs to pay for these debts in our behalf. However, the one who needs to pay must be (1) without debt himself (2) has the ability to pay for the debt & willing to pay for the debt (3) willing to set the debt aside.

All these can be found in Christ!

A. He is WITHOUT Sin/Debt Himself

21 Para sa ating kapakanan, ginawa niyang may kasalanan siya na hindi nakakilala ng kasalanan, upang sa kanya tayo’y maging katuwiran ng Diyos. (2 Cor. 5:21)

22 “Siya’y hindi nagkasala, at walang natagpuang pandaraya sa kanyang bibig.” (1Pet. 2:22)

B. He is ABLE and WILLING to pay for the Debt

24 Siya mismo ang nagdala ng ating mga kasalanan sa kanyang katawan sa punungkahoy, upang tayo’y mamatay sa mga kasalanan at mabuhay sa katuwiran; dahil sa kanyang mga sugat ay gumaling kayo. (1Pet. 2:24)

25 Dahil dito, siya’y may kakayahang iligtas nang lubos ang mga lumalapit sa Diyos sa pamamagitan niya, yamang lagi siyang nabubuhay upang mamagitan para sa kanila. (Heb. 7:25)

C. He is WILLING to SET ASIDE the Debt

Sapagkat ako’y magiging mahabagin sa kanilang mga kasamaan, at ang kanilang mga kasalanan ay hindi ko na aalalahanin pa.” (Heb. 8:12)

We all know and believe that Christ, God The Son, entered into His own creation some 2000+ years ago. But what exactly did He do while He was here on earth? what did He accomplish?

Throughout His life, He lived a life of perfect obedience in accordance with what God’s Laws require. And in doing so, He lived a life that we cannot live. And in His death on the cross, He paid for the penalty of the sins that we owe God, dying the death that is due to us. In doing so, He satisfied the demands of justice that God’s laws require. And in His final moments on that cross, He boldly exclaimed in the midst of His suffering; “IT IS FINISHED”. “PAID IN FULL”. He died, was buried & was raised on the third day, completing and sealing His work of redemption. He ascended back to His Heavenly home, and one day, He will be back to judge both the living and the dead. He will be back to collect the payment for the debt that we owed against our Holy and Righteous God. And on that day, may you be found DEBT FREE at His return.

Think about it dear friends; we either pay for our sins for eternity in Hell, or we give our sins to Christ who is able & willing to pay for our sins. What must we do then? The invitation is simple; REPENT of your sins, turn from them, and put your faith in Christ alone. Because only in Christ can we find true and full forgiveness, and pardon from our debts, our trespasses, our sins against God. Only in Christ can we find eternal life.

To God be the glory!

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