For you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings– Malachi 4:2 ESV
Hardly a day goes by without our culture acquiescing to and even celebrating the “new normal”.
Behaviors and viewpoints that would have been considered unthinkable a few decades ago have become so ordinary we are hardly shocked by them. Following are a few highlights:
Biological boys are routinely transformed into girls and vice-versa. Men dressed flamboyantly as women oftentimes have the run of story hour at public libraries in large metropolitan areas. The American Medical Association has recommended that the sexual designation be removed from all birth certificates. Nearly one-third of all children are born to unmarried women. Record numbers of drug overdoses were reported last year. Nonetheless, due to decriminalization efforts drugs including some “hard drugs” are for all intents and purposes, now legal. Material that was once considered hardcore pornography and therefore completely unacceptable is now mainstream and available to any third-grader with a smartphone. Perhaps, most shocking there is an active push to normalize and legalize pedophilia.
Sadly, the above list barely scratches the surface of the social and moral changes that have taken place in our society over the course of the last three decades.
This moral sea change has had a hardening influence on society in general. Individuals routinely say things about and to others that would have been considered unimaginable just a few years ago. People are becoming more violent as individuals become less self-controlled and less concerned with the well-being of others. This trend has resulted in a sharp uptick of violent crime. Riots, school shootings, hate crimes and road rage have all become disturbingly ordinary events in many parts of Western civilization.
Most conservatives find all this quite troubling. Especially Christian conservatives. We understand a civilization will not continue to function as a legit society for long if the majority chooses to embrace moral and social anarchy.
Most Christians are searching frantically for a clear path out of the encroaching madness. Our go-to to achieve this end tends to be political. Most Christians are hoping and praying for a political figure or party to step into the fray. We want a wise human who will make some laws that will save us from our sorry selves before we go the way of the Romans or the Babylonians and sin ourselves into extinction. There are all sorts of problems and issues with this mindset, following are four of the most troubling:
When we look to politics for escape from our problems we ignore history-
Americans, including many Christians have voted for a lot of losers from both parties over the course of the last century. That being said, our culture did not become the dumpster fire it is today because Americans elected the wrong people. Americans, including many Christians elected the wrong people because they believed the wrong things about God, life and what really matters in life. The wrong beliefs our culture adopted created the moral vacuum that got us the political leaders we have today. We must never forget: in a democracy politics always follow the moral choices of the people doing the voting.
It denies the warnings of Scripture-
Scripture teaches that as a general principal, humans tend to reap what they sow (Job 4:8, Proverbs 22:8, Hosea 8:7, Hosea 10:12, 2nd Corinthians 9:6, Galatians 6:7). It is very rare that bad leadership erupts from out of nowhere. This is even more true in a society where people get to elect their leaders. It is simply a pattern throughout Scripture that societies tend to get the leaders they deserve due to the choices of their citizens.
It is a form of idolatry-
Anytime we humans look to another flawed human to do things that only God can do it becomes a dangerous form of idolatry. This particular form of idolatry almost always leads to people being ruled over by a tyrant (1st Samuel 8:10-18).
It keeps us from seeking the only things that can make a difference-
Christians are commanded by Jesus to be a preserving, protecting and illuminating presence in whatever society they live in (Matthew 5;13-16). This means modeling for the culture what healthy living looks like in every sphere of life. Anytime Christians seek human leadership as their primary source of help and hope they stop seeking the things that have the power to bring about transformation in a culture. The cultural moment we find ourselves in demands Christians model repentance and dependence on God in our culture in hopes of ushering revival into the greater culture. Without heart-felt repentance on a massive scale culture as we know it is done for at least for a season.
Cultural transformation is possible but our hope has to come from the Lord. Transformation will occur when God’s people make the choice to live in a truly counterculture way. We do that by seeking God with our whole hearts. We have to ask Him for help and wisdom. We need to commit to living according to His commands in all situations no matter how weird that makes us to the surrounding culture. If Christians do those two things consistently revival will come (2nd Chronicles 7:14). Revival will bring the cultural changes we all want and our culture needs.