Born to be a Car Thief
Published on August 27, 2022
Repent

     As Morris stepped on the gas pedal, the sleek, beautiful Ferrari leaped into the night.  He had done this many times before but never lost his enthusiasm for the way exotic sports cars accelerated so effortlessly and handled so beautifully.  As he turned off the freeway, he headed up the winding back road that led to his workshop.  These corners were his favorite part of the drive.  The delight of driving an automobile like this was, in his mind, second only to the thrill of stealing it.  Nobody had seen him.  The plan was flawless, and he had executed it perfectly.  All was good and he was now almost to safety.  As he continued into the last few miles of his trip, he began to recount the events of the evening that had played out so perfectly.  He thought to himself, “Wow, I was born to be a car thief!”  In a way, his sentiment was not wrong.  After all, nobody would argue the fact that Morris was quite proficient at stealing high end cars.  He had done this many times before.  He would take his beautiful catch back to his workshop to make it unrecognizable until it could be sold.  His father, Morris Sr, was in prison for the same crime.  “Dad would sure be proud of this one”, Morris thought, as he approached the driveway to his shop.  Yes, car theft was in his blood.  He loved this way of life.  He was good at it.  “Yes”, he thought to himself, “I was born for this – I am proud of this – this is who I am”.  He was so lost in thought and his heart was so filled with pride that he didn’t notice the car behind him – until the piercing lights filled the space all around, blinding him in a flashing ocean of red and blue.

What makes it a crime? 

     In the difficult weeks and months after his arrest, Morris would learn some painful truths.  It turns out this way of life that he had embraced so fully is not legal and is, in fact, criminal behavior.  It had defined him to such an extent, and he had taken so much of his identity from this activity, that it was hard for him to believe it was criminal.  But that fact became more and more clear as he moved through the legal proceedings that were now in motion against him.  What is or is not a crime is, of necessity, determined by something larger than us members of society.  In this country, we have long looked to God, and to the Bible for our definition of right vs. wrong.  This is the reason you find the 10 Commandments on display (or carved into the walls) at our legal buildings.  In this country, God determines what is right vs what is wrong, and He revealed that to us in His Word.  Historically then, in our legislative bodies at all levels, we have worked to create laws that reflect God’s Law as found in the Scripture. 

I was born this way!  That’s discrimination!

     Morris then had a thought…  He shared with his attorney, “I was born this way!  This is who I am!  They can’t discriminate against me for being born different than others – that is against the law!”  Morris’ attorney then explained to him that discrimination is judging the individual based upon a category to which he belongs, instead of upon his own merit.  However, when someone commits a crime, they must be judged based upon what they have done.  They must be held to the same standard as everyone else who commits the same crime.  Crimes are crimes for everyone.  The rules for auto theft are not different for different genders or races of people.  Things that are wrong are wrong for everyone.  Committing a crime means that someone carried out an action that is criminal behavior.  As for Morris’ claim that he was born this way, that he has a natural propensity that draws him to commit this particular crime.  Well, welcome to the club, Morris.  In the Bible, The Book of Romans says we all are filled with sin by nature.  We all have a propensity to sin. 

“As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.” 

– Romans 3:10-12, KJV

Romans 3:10-12

Sin

     Sin, which is naturally present in all of our hearts, has HUGE effects on us, both personally and nationally.  Our sins are different from one another.  Like our fictional character Morris, we may struggle with a tendency toward theft, or maybe it is more along the lines of sexual promiscuity or pornography.  Maybe we abuse alcohol or drugs and have allowed those things to take a terrible toll on our families.  We have been lied to by society about abortion for decades and many may have made irreversible decisions during a highly emotional time of their lives and now carry an incredible weight of guilt for decisions made perhaps years ago.  Society continues to lie to us today and glamorize homosexuality and even transgender, when, in reality, this lifestyle leads away from God and destroys the beauty God put into the marriage relationship.  Whatever the sin that weighs us down, whatever it is that tugs on our heart and pulls us away from where God would have us, there is only one place to go for victory.  That one place is the feet of the Lord Jesus Christ.  The Lord Jesus Christ also happens to be the one that we, as a nation, have worked tirelessly to exclude from our entire society.  Without getting Him back, we are hopeless.  Whether we’re talking personally, or nationally, there is no hope without Him. 

Guilty as Charged

     The Bible tells us that the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23).  That means that before God, if Morris was a real person, he would deserve death for breaking God’s laws with his sin of theft.  It also means that you and I deserve death for whatever sins are on our account before God.  There is nothing we can do to make these sins, or the penalty we incurred with them to just “go away”.  They must be dealt with.  God is righteous and cannot just ignore sins or pretend they never happened.  We owe Him a debt.  We owe Him our very lives.  We are guilty of a capital crime. 

The Great News

The amazing great news is that God provided a Way for us.  Our sins require death in payment, but God sent His son, Jesus Christ, to the earth.  Jesus lived here as fully God, but also fully man.  He lived a perfect life without sin.  Because He did not have sins of His own to pay for, when He gave His life on the cross, He died in my place, and also in the place of all others who will repent, turn from their sin, and follow Him.  This is the reason Jesus had to die on the cross.  It was to take my place there.  I owed death for a debt of sin and Jesus paid it for me.  Earlier we quoted from the first half of Romans 6:23 about the wages of sin.  But let’s look at the rest of that verse.  It says:

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

-Romans 6:23, KJV

Romans 6:23

If Jesus pays the price for your sin, you no longer owe that debt!  You are no longer burdened with a sentence of capital punishment!  Then you can have eternal life through Jesus – not because of what you did – but because of what Jesus did for you, on your behalf.  It is a beautiful thing!

Repent

Repentance is Key

Repentance is also critically important to the United States nationally.  We have plenty of national sins for which we need to repent, and turn away from.  I believe this to be of paramount importance for getting our nation back.  When the Temple was completed in Jerusalem, God told King Solomon that when they found themselves under judgement, this was the key to restoration:

“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”        

-2 Chronicles 7:14, KJV

2 Chronicles 7:14

Repent!

Let’s humble ourselves, pray, seek God’s face, and turn from our wicked ways.  We need to do this personally, and we also need to do this nationally.  Let’s stop making excuses like Morris was doing, for the sins that are destroying us and pulling us away from God.  Let’s repent and run to the Lord Jesus Christ.  He is the only one who can save us.  He is the only one who can save our beloved country. 

Read more

If you would like to read more on this subject, please go to R.E.C.I.P.E. for Saving America.

 

 

 

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Comments

13 Comments

  1. Greg Davis

    Great story! I don’t think think the car thief story is your AUTO(sort of punny)biography though😁But if it is obey Acts 2:38!

    Reply
    • Jason Southerland

      Lol – I get it – “Auto” biography… 🙂 Thank you for the comment!

      Reply
  2. Jeffrey

    This a good story on virtues. And I know that different religions see sins differently. And they also deal with sin in different ways. In Christianity it is Jesus Christ that is the Savior. In Judaism In the Holiday of Rash Hashanah to Yom Kipper the Jews believe that G-d open his BOOK OF LIFE. And in it he writes who will die, live, become sick, or healthy. He also writes in it who will be rich or poor. And during Yom Kipper Jews are in shul praying for their sins that they committed during the year. Ones that they might commit in the coming year. And also for the sins that were and are committed as a community and nation. And they pray for forgiveness and to be inscribed in the BOOK OF LIFE which G-d closes and the end of Yom Kipper. And other religions view sin in different ways. And also deal with sin in different ways as well. And this story is about committing a crime or you might say a sin. And I also know that depending on where you live in the world and what the main religion is there that people think of sin and getting rid of it according to their religious beliefs. And that is good no matter what religion you happen to follow. But it was a great story in trying to bring crime and sin as one when it come to religious beliefs.

    Reply
    • Jason Southerland

      To be honest, I started this article thinking I was going to highlight one particular sin, but the more I thought of it, I thought it more appropriate to open it up to all sin. I listed some of the biggies in the story that drag people down, but there are countless smaller things that have the same effect in terms of dooming us apart from the work of Jesus. The Bible says in several places that repentance is key to Him healing our land, and that reminds me of the same thing personally in that each of us has to settle up our personal sins with Him. I know there are many religions with different views on sin, but regardless, the blood of Jesus is the only thing that can cleanse our sin and reconcile us with God the Father. So, I wanted to tell that story as Jesus is the only hope for each of us personally, and also the only hope for our country. Thank you for the comment!

      Reply
  3. Julia A

    Absolutely one of the best blogs I have read. Wow, it is broken down very well. And it does make it very understandable on what is right and what is wrong, there is no gray area. You can only serve one God and the God of what is right and just provides new mercies every morning. We must ALL repent of our sins, as we daily sin and sometimes without knowing. God is wanting His children to repent and seek Him daily and He will restore us and our land.

    Reply
    • Jason Southerland

      Amen Julia – thank you for your kind words. Yes, we have lots of folks today that feel right and wrong are determined by vote – “democracy” if you will. But people have no jurisdiction to say something is good, if the Word of God calls it evil. We, as individuals, and also as a nation, have to turn away (repent) of these things and turn back to the Lord. (You might enjoy another article on this blog “Democracy and why we don’t want it” – which talks about some similar material.) Thank you for your comment!

      Reply
  4. Carol

    Well, you did it again! Every time I read one of your blogs and I think it was the best ever…you write another one. I like this one because it is so informative, especially to the ones who are new in the word. I live on an Indian Reservation and like the rest of the world we have a drug problem. Kids grow up seeing their parents use drugs and eventually some will follow that pattern…it just seems the right thing to do for them. We have sports programs for the kids and we do have some good Christian mentors, so hopefully that will change their paths. If they steal, make it be third base!

    Reply
    • Jason Southerland

      Thank you so much for your kind words. Yes, there are things that pull all of us away from God – away from where we should be. The Bible gives us repentance as the way back when we find ourselves off track – and that works personally or nationally. Repent means to turn away from the sin, and turn back to God. I pray our beloved nation will do exactly that. Thank you again for your comment.

      Reply
      • Carol

        Amen!

        Reply
  5. Susan Snavely

    It seems our country is headed down the path of thinking that Morris has. Accountability is becoming a thing of the past, and too much of “It isn’t my fault” or “I had a hard life” is the way to excuse the behavior. I do have faith that God can work in hearts, but WE need to be the beacons of light for Him.

    Reply
    • Jason Southerland

      Amen! The funny thing is that even though so many of us don’t want to take responsibility, we are still responsible for our actions! So, we end up in the position of being off track and needing to make things right with God. Praise God for the work Jesus did on our behalf to make reconciliation with God possible! Thank you for your comment!

      Reply
  6. Donna

    This is a great story! And I particularly like the call to repentance. I think people often forget that part!

    Reply
    • Jason Southerland

      Thank you! Yes, it has been all over my heart lately that we need to repent – not only as individuals for personal sins, but also nationally for the evils we have embraced in this country. May we repent and turn back to God! Thank you for your comment!

      Reply

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