They refused to love the truth and so be saved. Therefore, God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false– 2nd Thessalonians 2:10b-11 ESV
Craziness is being taken to whole new level these days.
Consider these current realities:
- A male is now the number one female swimmer in America.
- It is no longer true that being born with a particular set of chromosomes (XX or XY) determines gender.
- Feelings are every bit as valid and important as facts.
- Words are violence.
- It is possible to say, write or post something inoffensive in a “mean way” instantly making the inoffensive thing “mean” and “aggressive”.
Humans routinely look at long lists of facts proving something to be true. After viewing the evidence (much of it airtight) they will assert that all those obvious and incontestable facts are simply not true. They conclude the truth is in fact the exact opposite of what the facts say they are. This makes it official: our culture has fallen down the rabbit hole. Good has become evil, right has become wrong, and lies have become truth. Literally.
There is nothing stranger than watching a seemingly rational and apparently functional person deny the clearly obvious without any apparent misgivings. It feels like you’re witnessing someone morph into a pod person right before your very eyes. It FEELS as if you’re being willfully gaslighted. However, I am convinced that is not the case most of the time. The pod people really believe the lie. They imagine that men can really be women, feelings are as important as facts, words are every bit as harmful as a weapon in the hands of a killer and intent is irrelevant.
Interestingly, the Bible does provide an explanation for this lunacy. 2nd Thessalonians tells us that as the world winds down and we near the “end of the age” (Matthew 13:39-43, Matthew 24) there will be “a great delusion”. The delusion will come because people will refuse to believe the word of God and be saved. The delusion will cause many to believe things that are simply not true. In Luke twenty-one Jesus warns of something similar. He tells His disciples that in the end false prophets and teachers will deceive many. Jesus warns that the delusion will be so powerful that even some of the “elect” or those who have a relationship with Jesus will be tempted to believe the lies.
The delusion appears to be gaining ground. It’s the only rational explanation for the madness currently running amok in our culture. Furthermore, the monkey business we’re experiencing will not end until we have a massive revival that impacts the majority of the population or Jesus returns. Seriously. Once a civilization collectively hops on a bus to Crazy Town there is little chance of turning the bus around without divine intervention.
This means believers in Jesus must get busy figuring out how to deal with the current reality in a way that reveals truth to the world around us and honors God.
Nothing is impossible with God. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean everything God calls us to do will be easy. Living for God in a topsy-turvy rabbit-hole world of post-truth is no easy task. That said accepting the following realities will make it easier.
We must question everything-
Seriously. The ideas and philosophies taking root in our culture are not all obviously insane, some clearly are, but some aren’t (Colossians 2:8). Sometimes the deception is subtle. Some lies have a little truth at their core. Others seem good true on the surface and it isn’t until you carefully examine the fruit of the idea that you see the idea really is toxic. This means Christians have to practice wisdom and discernment (Psalm 119:125, Job 34:4) in every circumstance.
We have to learn to pray about everything-
We do not live in a time and place where can pridefully “lean on our own understanding” about anything and survive spiritually (Proverbs 3:5-6). This a time to humbly acknowledge the reality that God knows more than we do about everything and ask Him for wisdom about everything even the things that feel right to us (Proverbs 14:20)
We have to be okay with not being liked-
The days of being an esteemed majority are all but over for Christians, at least for the foreseeable future. The sooner we get comfortable with the reality of not being liked the sooner we can get on with learning how to live spiritually productive lives in a post-Christian culture. This reality does not give us permission to be rude, unpleasant or lacking in grace but it should give us the courage to say what needs to be said and to defend what’s good and true.
Hard times are upon us.
I don’t know if the hard times are the beginning of the end or simply a blip on the radar that will lead to a revival. That question is way above my current paygrade. I do know our call in this cultural moment is to be faithful in all things and trust God with the rest.