Bible Study

The Believer’s Safety Net

Delbert Baker
The Believer’s Safety Net
Working on the farm helps students stay connected with their traditional culture. [Photo: Holbrook Indian School]

Best practice advises that each one of us has a personal security plan established and in place before your crisis hits. COVID-19, the volatile global conditions, and the messiness of life warn that everyone needs an internal mindset that ensures, “No matter what happens, I have a means of support”; “even if things get tougher, I will be able to weather any storm or crisis.” Call it what you will—a personal crisis-management plan, an internal locus of control, a faith that stands under pressure—we need it.

Security is a good thing. Back in the 1930s when building San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge, a group of tough, experienced steelworkers discovered the practicality of having a security backup. When commencing the project, no safety plan was in place. Productivity was moderate, and more critically, 23 workers fell to their death.

The project was stalled until an adequate security plan was put into place. Eventually a huge safety net was deployed under the workers, which cost a staggering $100,000 (a great deal of money for that time). Following this safety procedure, at least 10 men fell into the net and were saved. Remarkably, because of this safety backup net, besides the saving of lives, the steelworkers accomplished 25 percent more work.

In the spiritual context, believers don’t espouse that security comes simply because of willpower and positive thinking. They do believe in the cooperation principle. Ellen White articulates this cooperation principle by the following: “True success in any line of work is not the result of chance or accident or destiny. . . . God gives opportunities; success depends upon the use made of them. . . . Herein is revealed the outworking of the divine principle of cooperation, without which no true success can be attained. Human effort avails nothing without divine power; and without human endeavor, divine effort is with many of no avail.”1

The cooperation principle rests securely on the combination of the human and divine. Together they comprise a reliable safety net that will save any believer in the event of crises and calamities. Here then are the three support anchors of the believer’s safety net:

1. Anchor of Personal Providence: “We know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Rom. 8:28).2

2. Belief in Divine-Based Resilience: “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him. Even so, I will defend my own ways before Him. He also shall be my salvation, for a hypocrite could not come before Him (Job 13:15, 16).

3. Confidence in the Keeping Power of Christ: “Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 8:37-39).

Be sure your safety net is in place.

Delbert W. Baker, Ph.D., is the director of Research and Development for the Office of Regional Conference Ministries/Retirement Plan based in Huntsville, Alabama.

1 Ellen G. White, Lift Him Up (Hagerstown, Md.: Review and Herald Pub. Assn., 1988), p. 193; see also Philippians 2:13 and James 2:14-26.

2 All Bible texts are from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1979, 1980, 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Delbert Baker