Your part in preventing crime

Don't be an accomplice to tax evasion.

I Know I can't play ostrich and bury my head in the sand, pretending all the things spewing out of the television newscasts are not going on. They cannot be ignored, but rather need to be healed.

This led me to ponder two statements in Science and Health, the textbook of Christian Science. One point states flat out that "... those who discern Christian Science will hold crime in check. They will aid in the ejection of error" (p. 97). The other one is just as definitive: "Who is telling mankind of the foe in ambush? Is the informer one who sees the foe? If so, listen and be wise. Escape from evil, and designate those as unfaithful stewards who have seen the danger and yet have given no warning" (p. 571).

I didn't want to be one of the "unfaithful stewards," yet I wasn't quite sure how to go about being obedient to these directives. Then I found this statement: "At all times and under all circumstances, overcome evil with good. Know thyself, and God will supply the wisdom and the occasion for a victory over evil" (ibid.).

Since I made this commitment to stewardship, God has definitely supplied me with "the wisdom and the occasion." In the first instance, the person I found to help care for a beloved relative during his advancing years requested that payment be made in cash so that she could avoid having to pay taxes. I explained that I could not do that because it was not honest and would not bless her, my dad, or me. She replied, "You must be a Christian. I am, too, and I guess I'd better act like one!"

Honesty is like pregnancy—either you are or you are not.

More recently, I was about to sign a contract for having my house painted. I felt the estimate was rather low and mentioned to the young man I'd chosen for the job that a "labourer is worthy of his hire" (Luke 10:7). He said that several years ago while working in our complex, he had felt that my husband and I were the nicest people he'd met. He also said that he wasn't going to declare this job on his tax records, so he could offer me a lower fee. I replied that I could not allow him to tarnish his integrity this way, nor would I be a part of anything that was dishonest. I also pointed out that honesty is like pregnancy—either you are or you are not. He softy replied: "Thank you for that. I needed to hear it." A new fee was then set and initialed.

Maybe our contribution to holding crime in check doesn't involve going into a neighborhood and taking knives or guns out of people's hands. Still, we can be alert to every opportunity to stop crime before it has a chance to get started. And we can surely "pray without ceasing" (I Thess. 5:17) for all mankind to be free of anything that would try to separate individuals from their divine rights as children of God.

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What about anti-Christ?
April 5, 1999
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