NOT A DRILL BUT A CALL TO ACTION: This is a note I wrote to myself in April of 2022. I post it today to revive this blog site as a place for spiritual reflection, practical service to Christ Jesus, and to be an outlet for my responses to that Still Small Voice that prompts me.
REPENT & RETURN, OH PEOPLE OF GOD (Namely, ME!)
…And the rest of the culture will either follow or retaliate.
I have been slow to respond. Slow to get upset, slow to accept what my eyes have observed, and my ears have heard. But it is no longer the case that I will go along with what many churches are going along with. Some background is in order.
I have been reading and listening to the arguments on both sides of the COVID event for the last two-plus years. I have mildly kept track of societal trends over the last fifty years, including the years I have come to maturity, made huge life choices, and experienced the consequences of those choices, including personal failures. I have recently watched and considered carefully a very concise graphic- novel type portrayal of themes in the Old Testament books of Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, Samuel, and Kings (Thanks to “The Bible Project” for that!). This portrayal caused me to recognize the parallels between ancient Israel’s downfall and the current state of affairs in the United States (and “the West,” for that matter).
That downfall ensued as the people of Israel followed the surrounding nation’s evil practices of immorality, particularly sexual immorality, and worship – namely child sacrifice. The arrogance that arose within the leadership, then the common people, produced a hardness of heart that increased their already inbred stubbornness. So much so that prophets arose to call out the evil, to pray that God would "circumcise their hearts," or replace hearts of stone and give them a heart of flesh – one that would become sensitive to the calling of God to be a different people, one that would reflect God’s goodness and his justice.
In the Old Testament Israel was told to drive out the Canaanites from the land because of their egregious sin. Sin which ultimately Israel actually adopted and built upon it. Their sin culminated with their eventual capture and being dragged into Assyrian and Babylonian exile. The northern kingdoms never recovered their identity. The southern kingdom barely hung on out of the sheer will of God who left a remnant to return out of a promise to King David. Babylon and Assyria both disintegrated from the same cultural collapse into vile dissipation and sin.
I believe America has followed the downfall of these biblical cultures, as have many cultures in history, and is headed for certain disaster. (See Rabbi Jonathan Cahn's book, Return of the Gods) It may even be too late for the repentance of large portions of the population to make a difference. But I am hopeful, that we Christians understand the times and make changes to our attitudes, and behaviors, and become true “lights in the darkness.”
The 1960s ushered in a period of loosening of moral values in America. That cultural revolution eased us toward a watering down of social pluralism and changed the way people related to each other. It also changed the way people deal with power and with economics. Slowly, over the last sixty years, sexuality has moved from the bedroom to the mainstream of public life. Sexual liberation meant not only feminism’s agenda, or pornography’s existence, but instead being highlighted as essential learning in middle schools.
In this previous decade, the publicity of same-sex arrangements and proponents of gender fluidity has been given center stage in the media, Hollywood, and political referendums. In 2017 the United States Supreme Court upheld that the definition of "marriage" will include same-sex partnerships. Public school districts give way to trans rights - with threats of legal retaliation for anyone who dissents, promote hormone therapy and instructional practices promoting sexuality to be the number one concern, even topping racial equity – which is another topic altogether. Never mind the pursuit of academic excellence or professional grade skill levels. Never mind the common courtesy of district leaders representing their community’s values in their policies.
In 1972 the United States Supreme Court allowed abortion to move forward out of the shadows and into the mainstream of public life. From that time until now life’s value has slowly eroded in the eyes of many. In recent days it has become known to what extent the "abortion industry" has taken the lives of children and the extreme actions that are being hidden from public view but are being taken for the sake of profit. Children are being “sacrificed” now and not just metaphorically. There have been child sacrifices in esoteric satanic rituals throughout this country over the years, no doubt. But to discover the economic benefits being had by those involved in the partial-birth and post-birth ending of life brings this heinous practice to a whole new level. Not to mention Mexican cartels leaving children to die in the desert or killing them outright so as not to lose profit, due to the repulsive disinterest in our US border by our officials.
I have witnessed congregations led by sincere pastors and teachers who seem to be unaware of the implications, importance, and impending restrictions brought on in response to COVID in the United States. There is a growing number of church officials who continue to go along with governmental mandates and health official announcements. I wonder whether these leaders ever dug deeper into the actual data or thought about interpreting the Scriptures with a view to the church’s role in society.
The institutions we have grown to accept as working on our behalf were co-opted, and shown to be complicit in causing harm by withholding accurate information as well as repressing negative outcomes of publicly promoted methods of treatment (This fact is becoming more apparent in 2023). Is this not an example of a time for church officials to raise questions and call on the best and brightest among us to investigate and help the church as a whole respond appropriately and with critical precision?
There is even more evidence that again, profit and ransom have been involved in this "cover-up." For example, how can the CDC offer unbiased data publicly when a large portion of its financial resources come from large pharmaceutical companies? CDC data that matters is available, it’s just found buried within a mound of internet pages and in minuscule fashion. I know. I’ve hunted for the actual numbers of deaths in 2020 from covid, as opposed to with covid. YOU try and find it. Those numbers are just not apparent, they are inferential. And only recently has the CDC admitted the reporting was inaccurate and thus it really is difficult to ascertain.
I believe in the "church militant.” That’s a theological reference to being out in the world, but not OF the world. That’s a reference to its role in calling the nations to justice and righteousness. It’s a referendum for church leaders to rethink their posture toward civic leadership and the people in their communities. If the church leadership won’t speak up, won’t engage with government officials to challenge their thinking, policy decisions, and consequent governing action, don’t expect people in the pews to be anything but confused as they begin to witness the contradictory nature of current practices.
Some will mindlessly comply, hoping that things will just go back to ‘normal,’ without too much chaos. However, we’ve been participating in this fiasco long enough to witness that much will NOT be ‘back to normal’ on its own. Too much greed and influence is at stake. Someone has to stand and recognize this for what it is – the downfall of a country built on integrity, character, and a reflection of divine will, a potentially hostile takeover of our communities by ultimately evil influences.
I will NOT, for example, go along with pronouncements by government officials that masks are an important part of safety for a community. It has been demonstrated on many levels that masking – particularly of children is both detrimental to health as well as psychological development. I will NOT comply with politicians who attempt to intervene in personal health matters.
Mandating injections or masks or lockdowns for health reasons is not the government’s domain. It is the place of government officials to expose and prevent the harmful effects of proposals, policies, and practices, on behalf of those who elect them to office – on behalf of the governed. Why then aren’t more officials investigating the damaging effects of the current COVID injections, but instead are promoting them among children, the population least likely to be harmed by the virus itself. Look at the data, if you can find it.
There is a lot of disingenuous rhetoric going on in places of power and influence. To voice dissent is the right of a free society. Challenging the thinking and narrative being publicly promoted using established data and ethical treatment of information is the essence of healthy debate. Once upon a time that practice was found on university campuses. Now I question that assumption, given their complicit requirement for students to be injected before being allowed to participate in university life.
It is the right of individuals and of families to determine personal health practices. The Hippocratic oath constrains health professionals to ‘do no harm.’ WHAT HAPPENED TO THAT? Instead, there is a wide swath of health ‘industry’ participants who simply comply, go along with, and disseminate inaccurate information or worse, endorse or engage in potentially harmful practices. Is there an economic advantage to that? It is often uttered, “follow the money.” Is this an instance of that unfortunate motivation?
It is the place of government to ensure communities have the wherewithal to make good decisions by providing the freest exchange of ideas and information on a complete scale. Again, it is clear in many instances of late that money plays a huge factor in decision-making and policy enforcement. Yet enforcement is supposed to depend upon the consent of the governed. That is not far from a biblically based idea. That is a fundamental assertion in the American experiment. And money or personal enrichment should not be a higher priority than public trust.
I believe God is good, God is just, and God responds to humility and repentance – from anyone, but especially from those who claim to be his children. Currently, we are in a perilous time – a valley of decision, here in the United States. If we as God’s people do not continue to WAKE UP, we will see something never imagined in our lifetime. I am writing this to add my voice to the rising tide of discontent with the trends arising in America and across the globe.
The political climate has brought many issues to light. But truthfully, the decline has been steadily happening for many years in and out of the limelight. Sexual immorality and child sacrifice were what I first noticed in the thematic study of the history of Israel. Pagan influence affected ancient Israel’s future. The same can be said for today’s church, unfortunately. Not in every instance but look at the conditions in our society and in our churches, generally.
Our culture has passively if not actively accepted abortion and is now also embracing the emulation of immoral sexual behavior and its derivations. From rampant adultery and ‘fornication’ considered ‘old fashioned prohibitions’ to trans rights promoting hormone-blocking drugs for children and sexually explicit imagery, literature, and instruction for early childhood education. Our culture has at its foundation become thoroughly pagan in this regard.
But what of the church? What do we promote and what do we practice? I know it is complicated, but if, “the righteous are bold as a lion,’ how do we speak out and how do we emulate godliness in light of this cultural depravity? Are we turning a blind eye to immoral behavior within our church families? Are we tacitly complicit by not holding up for single adults the virtue of marriage for the sexual experience? Are we adopting the distractions of the culture that shift personal attention away from holiness toward absorption into what the culture defines as uplifting? How many churchgoers cannot be without their cell phones? How many can cite the latest movie but cannot find Ecclesiastes in the Bible? How many put masks on their children when going into a store -or the sanctuary? How many have subjected their family members to covid injections without reading the explicit labeling about the dangers? If there is no difference within the church from outside the church, what impact are we truly having in our community?
The mutually assured destruction spoken of by politicians over the last sixty years will not escape affecting the families that attend church. Even if ‘the rapture’ is considered, since it is a legitimate interpretation of Scripture, there is no doubt the church will see a judgment beforehand. I for one, pray that the judgment we are inflicted with is because we challenge the culture toward truth, integrity, righteousness, and real justice, and not because we look no different than outside the Christian community.
If we as a church body – on a wide scale – truly repent of our complacency and our inability to live like we believe, then perhaps God will delay the coming tribulation another generation or two. It’s not clear if He will relent and restore America. But we can be like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, declaring that, even if God does not deliver us, we will not bow to the cultural idol or to the hand that wields its power.
“How should we then, live,” the late Francis Schaffer pronounced. I think we should do as Jesus suggested: “Occupy until I return.” In other words, practice godliness in our personal, family, and professional lives (see Second Peter 3:11, 18). Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Journalists - become the "civil prophets" your occupation was meant to be as "the fourth estate," speaking truth to power and challenging officials toward transparency and restoration of the public trust. Pastors - be shepherds who care not only for sheep or who go after lost sheep but be shepherds who protect the flock from the ravenous wolves, from lions like David did. Us regular Christian folk, let us exercise humility in our daily lives, not considering ourselves better than our neighbors, but rather loving them as Jesus described. Practice hospitality, service, and support for those in our community who need our help. Live differently, rejecting the ‘norms’ of culture in favor of the teachings of Jesus. Do we really need to be advertised to death? Do we really need all that our culture throws at us? I wonder what it would be like to reject the cultural trappings and attitudes in favor of a true Jesus-centered community?
Let us look forward to His return, but not wait idly. Let us be a "light to the Gentiles," a "voice crying in the wilderness," a ... - You finish the phrase! Be Jesus’ hands, feet, and heart.
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!