Saturday, December 21, 2013

Why All the Angst?

I have yet to watch a single episode of 'Duck Dynasty' and have no clue what the show is about. What's more, I don't care what it's about. But the latest uproar over Phil Robertson and his stance on homosexuality is ridiculous in the least, and hilarious at the most. Oh the horror of it all.

Then you have the mega-churches that stay away from controversial social issues and teach gobble-dee-gook every time their doors open because it's what people pay to hear these days.

For the last 2000 years, every attempt possible that is under the sun has been made and is being made to deconstruct the principles, values, and fundamentals of Christianity. The Soviet Union all but quashed Christianity during its reign. China is the same. Islam is racing across the globe and that for reasons I cannot understand. The last bastion of defense for the faith has been the United States for many decades. Now? The deconstruction of Christianity that has overtaken Europe is not only gaining steam here, it is in full attack mode. Every tenet of Christianity is under siege, whether you wish to believe it or not.

And Christians? They are wringing their hands and shaking their heads and saying, "Oh what shall we do? What shall we do?" My answer? Shut up with the whining. The final victory is near. The battle is not ours, it's God's.

One of my favorite westerns is The Outlaw Josey Wales with Clint Eastwood. An American Indian actor, Chief Dan George, had a great part in this movie. In one scene, he recounts to Wales his meeting with Abraham Lincoln. According to the tale, Lincoln told him and the other chiefs with him they needed to endeavor to persevere. He said they went back and thought about that for a long time. Endeavor to persevere. So they put down their peace pipes, took up their rifles, and declared war on the Union. Too funny. Yet, that is a message Christians of today must take as their mantra. Endeavor to persevere.

I do not promote Christians of this country take up arms to protect the faith. On this matter of the church being under attack, I don't even promote we write our congressmen or senators or president. That would be defined as carnal warfare. To fight this fight with worldly weapons, of any type, would be ridiculous. Paul the Apostle should be our guide here, for he said the weapons of our warfare are not carnal.

As I read the news and see the trends that are taking shape across the world, it gives me great comfort. And, if you are a bonafide Christian, it should do the same for you. It is time...nay, past time....for us all to rejoice at what is going on around us. We were given instructions by Jesus as to what we should look for that would be signs of his return. Are they not evident to you? When you read the paper, it's like reading biblical prophecy. This should excite every Christian.

Peter said that in the last days, there would be a great falling away. A falling away from what? From the church. In Aberdeen, Scotland, you can walk into a magnificent structure of a church building that has been standing for over two hundred years. Its stained glass and opulent wood carved furnishings are enhanced by the 800 tube pipe organ (I think it's 800). But, instead of a church where God is worshipped, it has been turned into a bar/restaurant/casino. The building was historical, and the one time church members had long 'fallen' away, leaving it there to languish and rot from disuse. So the building and land was sold and it was turned into what it is today. You can find it on the internet. It's called, The Soul Bar. I guess they thought that was funny. During my stay in the UK, I saw church building after church building that had been abandoned for years. Many are being bought by enterprising people to use them for other businesses such as the one I mentioned.

In the U.S., it's different. Here, we have empty churches that are filled with thousands of people. Empty I say, because nothing of substance or spiritual value is put on their soul's plate. As has also been written in the Bible, it says that in the latter days, people will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears. Notice they don't heap to themselves 'preachers', but teachers. In this country, preaching is fast going the way of the dodo. Yet, the Bible says it is by the foolishness of preaching that men are saved. Not teaching. Those churches in this country who refuse to abandon preaching the blood and the sacrifice and stand firm on the scripture, have many empty seats. This should encourage us. For we know the Master is closer than ever.

Don't get me wrong. The church has failed miserably in its task and judgment will begin with us, just as Peter said. Edmund Burke said, "As the church goes, so goes the world." Take a look at the world today and you see the condition of the church. The salt has lost its savour, and is being thrown out to be trodden under the feet of godless men. We should weep at this result that is of our own making. However, look to the east...for the time is fast approaching.

Those who are glad the world is awash with humanism, liberalism, multi-culturalism, and the ideal that whatever you wish to do, no matter if it's a crime against God or nature, will one day realize their error in thinking. I pray it is not too late for them.

I do not advocate a law that restricts people from living their lives the way they see fit. I do advocate freedom to disagree and freedom to verbally express that disagreement with an alternative solution, whether anyone wants to listen to it or not. If your idea of freedom is to expand one over the other, then your idea of freedom is perverted and possibly beyond repair.

Christians of today, I encourage you to endeavor to persevere. Over the last fourteen years, I have not done this. Yet, I am finding myself drawn back to the roots of my faith. It is a slow process, and my anger with God is subsiding as the wounds are being healed. I am on the road to spiritual recovery, and am committed to persevering.

Continue praying for our leaders and this country. Pray for those who are blinded by nonsensical reasoning. Pray for your State, county, city and neighbors. Be a light for those around you and always be ready to make a defense of your faith by studying the Bible with an open mind and heart, to receive the instruction you need to be a valid witness for Christ. Go to a church that still preaches. Raise your children in the way they should go. Give of your increase. And keep your eyes on the eastern horizon. The day is soon coming. And you might just be here to see it. endeavor to persevere. We've already been told these days were coming. Why are we surprised to see it? Always remember this....nothing you read or see has taken God by surprise. He's still on his throne and in control. Smile at the vitriol that comes your way because of your faith and what you believe in. It will only make you stronger for that day when it comes. Everything....and I mean going according to His plan. And you can take that to the bank.

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