Sacred

Why is the idea of racism so unifying these days? Most people have no fear of speaking out against racism, if anything it is encouraged and praised, which is a far cry from where this country was even 50 years ago. Is it simply about equality and being treated fairly? That is how society in general sells it these days, equality above everything. And who doesn’t want to be fair, who would stand against equality, so it’s a pretty easy sale isn’t it.

It seems social morality and politics have focused their energies on fairness and equality. I really think it is more than that, our race should be considered a sacred thing, our ethnic background and family should most certainly be sacred and it should be treated that way. But we have reduced it to a thing of fairness and equality. Do you think it is about equality no matter what our race is? Or do you think race and family are sacred and should be treated as such?

You might be wondering why this line of thought. Well it just dawned on me that sexuality in our society has been treated as something that should be viewed with fairness and equality when it should also be treated as sacred. Because of my faith, I know that sexuality is a sacred gift from God. So when asked about homosexuality I can’t justify the aberration just like I could not condone or justify anyone’s actions of promiscuity outside of marriage.

We were created by God and it is His plan for a man and woman to be united as one. It is in this union that the needs are met for and in each other. Now I know the argument for those who have the disposition for homosexuality and I would not argue that because everyone faces temptation, everyone has a thorn in their side. As a Christ Follower we need to renounce our disposition and we hope and pray that we receive the strength in order to resist our flesh. This does not mean we are perfect and without sin, it means with all our intent we strive for who Christ has told us we are.
So an individual choice needs to be made. Do you let society tell you that a storm of emotions leading you to do what we want, are more important than a man and woman who are committed to each other, mutually helping one another and raising children together. The term individual is important here because the decision is for each of us to make, but do we make that decision based on the worldview or a biblical view? Some say the Bible isn’t relevant these days, funny thing none of the issues have changed that the Bible speaks about, and it is relevant in my life, in fact it is life changing.

I haven’t written this to separate myself from others. That isn’t something we as Christians should do. We’re called to minister to all people, especially those not in the Christian community. However, the Gospel at times is repulsive to those who do not know Christ. The idea of giving up power, greed, and pride to be a servant to others is against everything inside our hearts. The idea that the closer we get to Christ the more broken we look in comparison is not appealing to us in the slightest. That is why the Gospel, and consequently Christians, are treated the way they are.

“If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.” John 15:19

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Counter Cultural

Some of you recently watched the State of the Union address; to be honest I was not one of those people. They have become very predictable and not since President Bush’s axis of evil speech have there been any surprises. Our President’s do a great job during these speeches and that is expected, they have the best speech writers available to them and more than enough time to prepare.

The very first State of the Union speech was given by George Washington in 1790 and they have taken place every year since. The media certainly does attempt to build these events up but what do we remember if anything from these speeches. I can mention the one speech that President Bush gave because it was somewhat different from the others during my lifetime. Other people might mention President Johnson’s speech when he introduced the War on Poverty or when President Roosevelt proposed the Four Freedoms. And for those of you who are students of history you might mention President Monroe and the Monroe Doctrine which became the cornerstone of foreign policy for this country for a time.

The STU in my opinion is the political and cultural viewpoint of our President. At one time I might have said; the viewpoint of our country but our country is so divided in its views that it has in the very least become the President’s view and his supporter’s views. The STU speech seems to be more of a laundry list of things that need to happen in order for peace and harmony and fairness to be achieved.

In either case those of us who identify ourselves with Christ, have to ask ourselves what is the biblical view of our culture?

In spite of all the increases in technology, medicine, education and all the other areas we deem important, we have not changed from our own basic nature and if we haven’t fundamentally changed then it can be said that neither has society. Our confidence grows as a society mainly because of the increase in accomplishments. But this confidence or faith is not in the One that truly matters. It seems that what people would call progress, has had the effect of diminishing things like peace of mind and purpose in life. But what this progress has given us are new ways to indulge ourselves in sinful lifestyles, new ways to corrupt and destroy ourselves. Society is not spiraling out of control; it seems to me to have a pretty consistent downward spiral. This should not surprise us; the bible teaches us that things will get worse.

What do we base our actions and the actions of society against? The answer would boil down to morals no matter how we slice it. A problem that we have is, as a society our morals are what society deems right or wrong or what the law might say. Because of this our Morals change with what is normal or even what is acceptable in society. The fact is our morals should be based on the Ethics of God and His word.

I joked around with a friend of mine saying that we need to start our own commune. Which is exactly what some Christians try to do by isolating themselves from the world around them. I think most of us have attempted this at one time or another, and most of us have also found it doesn’t work. You may remove yourself and your children from the culture, or at least attempt to, but the culture will find you. Jesus prayed this for us: “I’m not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one” (John 17:15).

The objective of believers is not to isolate, but to infiltrate; not to evade, but to invade. We are to impact our culture without being compromised by it. And what does God say about our culture?

We see unseen things (2 Cor. 4:18)
We conquer by yielding (Rom. 6:16-18)
We find rest under a yoke (Mt. 11:28-30)
We reign by serving (Mark 10:42-44)
We are made great by becoming little (Luke 9:48)
We are exalted by being humble (Mt. 23:12)
We become wise by being fools for Christ’s sake (1 Cor. 1:20, 21)
We are made free by becoming His bond servants (Rom. 6:10)
We are strong by being weak (2 Cor. 12:7-10)
We find victory by boasting in our infirmities (2 Cor.12:5)
And we live by dying (John 12:24-25; 2 Cor. 4:10-11)
For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,”
declares the Lord. (Isaiah 55:8)