In the last days, sin will be rampant everywhere,
and the love of many will grow cold.
Matthew 24:12 (NLT)
Some translations even go so far as to say “most.” Most people I know go into shutdown mode when anything remotely controversial or political comes up. They don’t want to hear about anything that challenges their preconceived notions or pet beliefs or might be “divisive.” They are afraid of confrontation or can’t be bothered to hash out the issues and really look at their merits and drawbacks on an intellectual level rather than a knee jerk emotional level. They are afraid of alienating people or driving people away from the church.
Some people don’t really want to know the truth. They want to hear that what they already believe is the truth. https://t.co/FLD8WDJMFZ
Now I am not saying that some of those are not valid concerns. Christ certainly does not want us to be argumentative and divisive just for the sake of argument or establishing our superiority in the pecking order. He does, however, very much expect us to stand for Truth and uncomfortable Truth hurts, but sometimes we need a little hurt to root out the rotten and start the healing.
I know I hated my parents to rub alcohol or peroxide on my owies when I was a kid. It hurt. I didn’t like it. I wanted them to stop. But they knew better than to let the dirt stay in there and cause an infection that delayed healing. It is the same with Truth — when delivered with a generous helping of God’s grace. Granted, He never meant us to use it as a hammer to beat anyone else up!
Nonetheless, this current election season has moved far beyond the realm of who does or does not end up occupying the elected offices of this country. All of the vitriol and the elevation of at least two candidates for the highest office in the nation, whose legal troubles alone should raise serious questions and have set them aside as possible candidates from the get go out of concern for character unbecoming a leader at any level, brings some serious concerns to the forefront about the type of culture we have created, even among Christians that lets such blatant evil and sin pass unchecked with a wink and a nod. A resigned shrug that accepts without question or protest that this is the best we can do in the dirty realm of politics and votes, albeit reluctantly, for the mythical “lesser evil” because “what else can we do?” There is a fundamental lack of understanding of the power of the people in our system of government and too many just accept the choices they are given as the only ones possible without even looking into the alternatives. As famous theologian, Charles Spurgeon is credited with saying, “Of two evils, choose neither.”
Perhaps even scarier are those who don’t even see the evil at all or excuse it out of some misguided notion of what Christian love and forgiveness is really supposed to look and sound like. They set themselves up to take all kinds of abuse, all the while feeling like they are just doing their Christian duty and being like Jesus who endured all the scorn and shame of the world that we may be saved, in hopes that their abusers will one day see the light and be so impressed by their humility that they will change their ways.
Anyone who has ever endured abuse of any kind can tell you what a futile hope it is that the doormat routine will ever inspire any kind of behavior change. In fact, the abusive mindset finds fertile ground in the pliable and patient nature of many Christians that enables them to keep on abusing without ever being called to account for their abominable behavior. Dena Johnson, describes how the abusive mind works in her blog:
They surround themselves with enablers, the sweet, kind, meek person who will bend to their whims, allowing them to control at all costs. They prey—perhaps even subconsciously—on good, Christian girls who will fight for the marriage at all costs. They misuse scripture to get their way, to convince their husbands they are the ones going against God’s will.
And the church turns a blind eye, saying it is the Christian duty to stay in the marriage at all costs.
The same principle applies in the current political climate.
Don’t let people “should” all over you! Stand up and do what YOU believe is the right thing to do!
Certain people in the current contests have brought the whole process down to the level of bully/abuser and victim; and too many are allowing it to happen, falling into the cycle of abuse on a national level and letting a few loud mouth, narcissistic, control addicts twist our values into something to be mocked, ignored and tossed aside at will. It isn’t funny. It isn’t a joke. It isn’t something to take lightly and say, “Oh well, it’s only four years. Maybe next time.” and proceed to vote for the very epitome of everything a Christian ought to know better than to support, in the hopes that maybe once the power hungry narcissist con man with a loose hold, if any, on any consistent principle or truth or the liar extraordinaire and alleged traitor, both facing criminal charges already, gets into power, they will change their ways.
One word. NOT!
There’s a time to watch and pray for sure and trust GOD to reach into hard hearts and transform the coldness with His light. But just because GOD can does not mean we are going to get the fairy tale ending every time. This is not Hollywood. In the real world, people have to cooperate with GOD in order for change to happen and not everyone is willing to let GOD take control and change what needs to be changed. Especially control freaks complicated with an ego the size of Jupiter and a ginormous sense of entitlement!
GOD does not expect Christian love and humility to take the form of being a doormat and just putting up with constant abuse from an unrepentant heart out of a sense of not being narrow minded and judgmental or unloving. There comes a time to remove yourself from the vicinity or association, with as much grace as possible but firm boundaries that you will not tolerate or enable that kind of treatment and if they wish to continue that kind of thinking and behavior they will have to do it alone, away from where it can hurt you! You are a child of the King. It is not prideful to expect to be treated decently, whether from a spouse, friends, family or our local, state and national leaders. It is actually more loving to apply a little tough love and boundaries and get out of the road and let GOD take care of the rest than to contribute to creating an artificial safety bubble that allows an abuser to continue in their sinful ways at your expense. Not speaking up in opposition to sin or doing all in our power to oppose, block and warn against unrighteousness carries its own consequences.
…then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city and you shall stone them to death; the girl, because she did not cry out in the city…
We need people willing to take unpopular stands, to be Truth Warriors in a countercultural battle for the souls of our nation. To say, this far and no farther — whether we win the day or not, this will NOT happen on my watch without it being very clear in the eyes of GOD and man that this was done in spite of my warnings, not because of my apathy and resignation. This goes beyond individual candidates or campaigns — this is a battle to restore Biblical principles in the hearts of the people so they see things GOD’s way and bring about revival from top to bottom through the power of We the People, rather than relying on piecemeal and futile attempts to legislate morality – a surefire way to guarantee failure because you only get compliance through heavy handed enforcement, not any real heart change, which is the only kind that will actually stick.
I am not living in isolation, insulated and blind to what is happening and the consequences it will have for me and every person living in this country. A great wrong is being done and condoned by a noisy minority who only want to be entertained (though I find their idea of entertainment reprehensible), enabled in their anger and violent tendencies and to shout down the majority and deceive people into thinking their will is the will of the people and that the actual will of the majority is irrelevant.
I may not be able to stop what is happening but far be it from me to just lie down and take it or resign myself to the self-fulfilling prophecy of buying into the popular spin that says this person has no chance or that person is inevitably going to win, letting the assumption of what I think others will vote for make me throw my vote away on someone I believe with all my heart to be unstable and dangerous instead of being true to my conscience.
Too many people do that and we get the result that no one really wanted but made come true out of fear that they would stand alone. Truth is — win or lose– if I don’t speak up and cry out against the great danger taking place before our very eyes, I will be held accountable for seeing brothers and sisters in danger and not trying to warn them. Whether they listen and change course is between them and God.
But I refuse to stand by and heap guilt on myself by silently watching certain elements of our society drag us all down the path of self destruction without a word of dissent, warning or indication of trouble and danger. When I stand before God, I want a clear conscience that I did all in my power to stand up for Him and to steer others to God honoring choices — even if they choose to ignore His warnings and mine and everyone else’s and bear their guilt and consequences alone as God gives them over to their evil impulses and desires.
If you’re criticized when you are trying to make a positive difference in the world, you’re in good company with Jesus.
I will speak Truth and make no bones that I stand with God and those whose lives honor Him, no matter what may come and who may win the day in these elections. If that makes me unpopular or subject of ridicule, well not much has changed. I’ve been subject to that in one form or another nearly my entire life, ever since I can remember. I am aiming at “Well done, good and faithful servant” instead. I hope there are other Truth Warriors out there willing to join the fight and not back down. If that is you, I’d love to hear from you. But I will fight for honesty, integrity and Biblical principles until I draw my last breath, even if I stand alone! Truth Warriors Assemble! We have work to do!