The reaction to Justice John Robert’s vote on Obamacare continues to send ripples throughout conservative America. Blogs, articles, emails and sometimes heated conversations point to the downward trend of our nation. Underlying these commiserations is a sense of betrayal and righteous indignation. Yet if the recent trends in this country and around the world have taken Christians by surprise, it only points to the obvious; the church has been asleep.
The nation and today’s religious church have held hands on the same path for many years. Both have too many in their governing bodies who call themselves servants while seeking self promotion and personal gain. Both waste dwindling resources on ineffective programs that miss the real need of the people. Nation and church alike “vote” along party/denominational lines. Each make attempts at reform that miss the real issues and therefore can only degenerate into yet another exercise in futility. And both are populated by too many who are content to let someone else shoulder the responsibility for change and tell them what to do.
In the last couple of days I’ve heard various suggested courses of action. Vote wisely. Speak out boldly. Confront political leaders. Organize protests. No doubt these action items are all important, but do they really address the root of the matter?
The health of a nation is directly tied to the condition of the church. What impact has the church in the US had on the culture? The answer is obvious, so there’s no sense in listing the well known facts regarding moral failure, divorce, divisiveness, etc. The world laughs at the church and the church points the finger at the world. I don’t think God expects the world to act any differently than they do. The nations are only a drop in the bucket to him. The church is his plan for the world.
We read in Acts that the authorities were alarmed because “these men are turning the world upside down.” Can the United States be turned around at this point? Loren wrote in his recent blog that a death must first occur. I tend to agree. But though I’m not a prophet, there’s one thing I’m certain of. It won’t happen in any case until the church wakes up. So what to do? The fifth chapter of Ephesians is full of timely instruction on the matter as is Hebrews 21:25-13:1.