I’ve a friend whose child (1st grade) brought church Easter invitations to school last month. At noon, my friend received a voicemail from the principal stating, “Children aren’t allowed to have religious items on campus.” Long story short, my friend was warned that his 1st grader was an, “Agent of a 501(c)(3) and must enter the state approval process, and file for school board permission, or be disciplined to the full extent of the law.” Interestingly, the little boy who was invited to church before this maelstrom (a boy with a Buddhist heritage) did attend church on Easter, exclaiming, “I never knew church was this fun or cool!” The Pacific Justice Institute has taken up my friend’s case, working to shine a light on this 1st grade evangelist’s rights.
Brothers and sisters, my story merely cracks the surface on a culture growingly militant against true Christianity, and using deep crevices in reason, and the silence of the spiritual majority, to legislate against your right to believe and worship.
Check out these other landmark cases…
In the 1970’s few blinked when abortion was legalized. In the 1980’s few spoke up when feminism mocked parenting. In 2010, most sat silent while a heady few upended the 6,000-year definition of marriage. And today, there’s but a brief outcry against the societal reform of gender itself. Because Americans are afraid of peer pressure, so controlled by seven conglomerates that own all media, and so subjectively mired in political issues, they forget that these aren’t worldview issues, they’re Scriptural issues! God has given the best way for his creation to live their life and His people must trust Him. These modern discussions aren’t simply a reversal of law but an outright assault on God – To redefine marriage is to ignore God’s order and to redefine gender is to ignore God’s very design. Way back in 2005, Dr. Al Mohler of SBTS wrote:
“Let’s just be honest and admit right up front that the Bible is clear and leaves no room for public relations effort to clean up the dust storm. The Bible begins with a declaration of divine creation. Then, we confront the creation of human beings as made in the image of God. And, we add, human beings are made male and female to the glory of the Creator… There it is – gender as part of the goodness of God’s creation. Marriage immediately follows as the divinely designed institutions for human ordering, sexuality, procreation, and romantic fulfillment. Marriage – the union of one man and one woman – is presented as an objective reality… The third chapter of Genesis clearly fails to meet muster in terms of modern psychotherapeutic expectations. Responsibility for sin is laid squarely at human feet; and the consequences of sin – downright repressive – are worse than draconian… Those four words, ‘In the beginning, God…’ land like nitroglycerin on the modern mind…”
How must church leaders and true Christians prepare for this new day of militant opposition? I suppose they could flee, this was certainly acceptable for the Waldenses, Pilgrims, and Amish. In fact, there are many stories of religious pilgrimage inaugurated by persecutions. But, there’s another option – to stay and fight – Yes, a Christian can take the long view of suffering for Christ and enduring for a heavenly weight of glory, partnering himself with martyrs past and present, boldly living out his or her faith no matter the cost. Of course, to fight as a Christian isn’t to fight with earthly armaments of hatred and violence. Instead, it is to fight with spiritual weaponry – the sword of the Spirit, the very Word of God. Biblical truth in love is earth’s most powerful force. Opponents of Christianity call this “intolerant” or “hateful” when in reality desiring someone’s best (not what they think is best, but their true best) is the highest love. Allow me to restate this for ultimate clarity; True Christian’s love you by desiring God’s perfect best for you, as shown in His perfect word, not by standing by while you choose what’s “not” best for you. Thus, for a Christian not to share God’s true word is the most unloving thing he or she can do.
For over a century, the book of 1 Peter (a treatise on Christian suffering) has grown cold in American pulpits. I’m not saying Pastors avoided it entirely, but when they did preach it, they were forced to tone down its rhetoric for the modern American with phrases like, “You won’t experience true persecution in America, but let’s picture this means ‘getting made fun of or picked on…’” Now to be fair to fellow pulpiteers, we didn’t have much choice – it’s very hard to connect 20th century America with a group of scattered Jews being persecuted by the insane emperor Nero. But, all of that is changing now. Suddenly, some of these passages begin to make sense…
In 1 Peter 1:6-7 Peter writes, “If necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire…”
I submit to you that True Christianity is about to be tested by the fire of trial. I mean this with 100% sincerity and am not pulling any punches here – Within a decade, churches will be closed down by the IRS for “hate speech”, pastors will stand trial for “hate speech”, and many average Americans will lose jobs, friends, and family simply for admitting that they accept the ENTIRE teachings of Scripture. Already, you will find social media limits the impressions (reach) of Scripturally ordinated posts. You will also find that most major colleges will not allow Christian groups or language on campus. Fifth Avenue has entirely removed Christmas from store fronts.
As this new day (or night as it may be) dawns, the hope of our 1 Peter text resides in the following brief phrase, “so that the proof of their faith, being more precious than gold…” This means that a Christian can look at impending trouble and heartache with triumphant joy, knowing that his faithfulness validates his faith. The word “proof” was used in the 1st century to describe the assaying of precious metals, determining how pure they were. By analogy, God tests the believer’s faith to reveal its genuineness. If you need examples simply study Abraham, Joseph, Job, Moses, Esther, and basically EVERY major biblical character.
In essence, the coming trials (literal and figurative) will prove what’s inside American Christianity. More specifically, it will prove what’s inside each of us. In some ways, this type of trial will allow we participate in the sacrificial offerings of our spiritual ancestry. I could easily take this time to write of the early martyrs. Or Calvin, Knox, Zwingli, and Luther, but time will not allow, except to say that these men, and countless others, were proven most faithful when the world was it’s most hateful. Alas, earth’s anti-God view is not new, harkening back to man’s most primitive beginnings (Gen 3:4).
Are you ready? When a radical sacrifice – children, income, career, friendships, even prison, faces you on account of King Jesus, will you shrink back in fear or stand boldly for His glory? Might I suggest that you ask these questions of yourself now, so that on the day of reckoning you are ready?
Be faithful, oh Christian! Be faithful! When the voluminous storms come, even when all have ignored and rejected you, and the cavernous darkness surrounds, God’s glorious light will at that time shine most brightly. It is in these moments of testing that the Holy Spirit will be most evident, you will relate best to your Christian heritage, and you will bring the most glory to King Jesus. Be faithful oh Christian, be faithful
Author’s note: When I use the term “True Christianity” it implies there is a “False Christianity.” Sadly, this False Christianity is a large part of evangelicalism today, which insists that one can be a Christian but not FULLY follow Christ and His Word. This False Christianity uses the title of Christ but does not obey the commands of Christ. This False Christianity is not ready to lose friends, family, and jobs for the values of Scripture. This False Christianity is what drives people to churches that ignore sin, focusing instead on how “esteemed” people are. It is the author’s opinion that this False Christianity will not exist in America by 2025 because cultural and governmental opposition will force everyone choose Christ or the world. In essence, Christ has introduced a spiritual cleansing of His bride.]