Our Daily Battle
I feel relatively certain today that there are a few things in our society that are not going unnoticed by Christians, and even saying "Christians" is something that doesn't necessarily mean what it used to among our nation's population. The name Christian hasn't lost its true meaning, but there are a lot of people who will claim the name, but fail to live up to it with their lives.
This is from Opinions 1:1 today. I pray it doesn't offend anyone, if anything, I pray it helps us all to reflect on where we stand in our efforts to please God. Many in our nation are secularists, people with really no religious affiliation, some who will still claim they are Christians because they are not agnostics or atheists. There are many of even these who are hostile toward those who preach allegiance to God's Word and obedience to His commands as a necessity. They prefer to adopt a 'take it or leave it' philosophy toward serving God, believing either is OK. People who practice their Faith are under attack from those who don't put their faith into practice. These discussions are sometimes displayed by those in politics who want to claim God for political gain, but who ignore God's very own words concerning righteousness and unrighteousness.
We are seeing daily a slow chipping away of what the analysts call 'religious liberties' by those who want to secularize what they call 'religious institutions' and we see these as political bullet points by certain people in political circles. To put it another way, we are under attack. In some extreme circles, there is even a push to gut 'religious exemptions', things like the exemption whereby churches are not treated like businesses regarding the paying of taxes. There are other attacks on churches of various skin colors, or beliefs different from those that would differ from them. I'm not talking about Christians distinguishing the truth from false doctrine as we are commanded, I'm talking about extreme groups, such as the Freedom From Religion Foundation, a Christian-bashing organization in the eyes of many, who want their day in court in their efforts to outlaw things such as the National Day of Prayer, and other events they want to claim violate the 'freedom OF religion' clauses of our constitution. Such hate groups have had God's word removed from the face of buildings, from classrooms, from book stores and so forth. It's the National Day of Prayer in their sights today, it will be some other attack tomorrow.
I'm not against the National Day of Prayer, like other such days, I believe people wanted to set aside a day for awareness sake, but I have a National Day of Prayer every day, and we all can. I'll be no different if it goes away, but I pray it doesn't, because the enemy will have won yet another human battle. Prayer doesn't need to be an event on a calendar, but there is something sinister about a group that opposes it so fiercely and wants it cancelled, likely with hopes of some way - some day making it illegal to pray. They've already made strides in this effort. When was the last time you heard a prayer before a high school sports game?
But what does all of this mean for us? What can we do about it?
I told you this was from Opinions 1:1. My personal belief is that we should allow these attacks to strengthen our resolve, to build us up, to grow our faith. That would be the exact opposite of what these persecutors desire would it not? If more persecution helps to make us better Christians, God be praised! (1 Peter 3:14). We may some day, Heaven forbid, have a leader in the big mansion in our nation's capital who sides completely with such groups, and works with them to strip us of all of our 'religious freedoms'. But such people can change every law they want to, and we will still have our freedoms, because they are not granted to us by man's law. 1 Cor 3:17, 6:12, Gal 5:13-14, 5:1, Eph 3:12, 1 Peter 2:16 are just a few verses that mention our freedom(s) in Christ and freedom from sin.
No one can take these away from us. They can confiscate every printed copy of the Bible, erase every computer file and take our Apps away, but God's Word remains, and so do our freedoms. We've been under attack from these people and groups like them for decades, and they have won some minor battles in the Supreme Court and on the law books, but they will never strip any child of God from the freedoms we have in His family. As they ramp up their efforts while they have opportunity and politics on their side, let us ramp up our knowledge in the Lord's Word, grow our faith, and always remember "the battle belongs to the Lord". 1 Sam 17:47