What Can A Christian Do When Our Nation Rebels Against God?
1. Stand On Authority To Stand For Authority!
God's Word the Bible is our Authority!
Our first allegiance has always been and should remain to be to God and what He has declared as truth in the Bible. The Bible is our law, it is our justice and it is our judge. We will stand before the written and living Word one day and give account to Jesus as to what principles we lived by and to whose practices we followed. Who we believed will determine what we believed and how we behaved. Concerning marriage the Bible affirms and sets forth, that marriage is between one man and one women. Additionally God has spoken in Romans 1:21-28 that homosexuality is a sinful lifestyle that rejects God's design from creation. Although our Supreme Court, some entire denominations, and many individuals in countless churches over our land have caved on this point, we must remain true to God's Word no matter the culture surrounding us!
Being counter-culture is not new to Christianity. True followers of Christ remain steadfast to God's Holy Word. As our spiritual fathers and mothers did through the centuries we find ourselves in similar days today. As they marched forward in the midst of every type of epic movement against God's authority we must follow their example today.
Remember that the gospel of Christ has no need for acceptance of a culture to prosper. History teaches us that in Christianities greatest attacks it THRIVES when the true followers of Christ follow Him and not man's belief's. So may we humbly submit to Christ and His Word and proclaim His truth in life and lip by the power of His Word and Spirit!
2. Find Answers To Give Answers!
In the days we live especially the days to come , believers will be ridiculed, challenged and questioned concerning same sex marriage. We must know what we believe! The Bible has the true answers. It answers everything needing an answer. We need to know the biblical answers to the hot topics of our day. We must be able to answer the challenges and questions on same sex marriage. Not only must we know what we believe but we must be able to explain these biblical beliefs to others.
Many people rejected the Lord and his truth. Others have only been influenced by the ways of man and when presented with the reality of God and His truth will listen and weigh things out. Even though they have been influenced by the ways of the culture they still can be influenced by the Word and Ways of God. The Bible is a powerful and supernatural book. As Christians it is our duty to give answers and trust the Lord to draw people to Himself through those answers. Read 1st Peter 3:15 where it instructs us to " be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you for the reason of the hope that is in you".
3. Choose Suffering Over Comfort!
America has been cursed by our blessings. We have become a people who are driven by ease, fun, and excess. As believers we must admit and confess it has entered into our own lives and churches. We don't like what is happening but we will allow it to continue because of the cost of what it takes to stop it. THUS it continues and in fact worsens. We complain but don't pray because it takes time away from worldly pursuits. We no longer speak up because of the fear of loss of a friend , the loss of a sale, or self advancement in some way. I am not naive enough to think that this very blog may bring some suffering to me in some form. I am taking my stand for God and speaking out. I understand clearly that if the ways of our nation do not quickly turn around that suffering is on the way to those who stand up and speak out against sins defined in the Bible. I am sure that the ruling by the Supreme Court will result in government mandates for Christian ministries and ministers that will put us in a position to decide between obeying the government or scriptural mandates, and that will place a HIGH PRICE on choosing the Scripture!
The World calls such thought as " Civil Disobedience", But Peter and John affirmed, " We Ought to obey God rather than men ( Acts 5:29). And so it is today. Like my spiritual forefathers and mentors of the past. Like all other Bible - believing pastors of today, I cannot support and I cannot lead our church to support same- sex marriage, I , nor any of Liberty Baptist pastor/authorities can or ever will be able to perform ceremonies for same- sex couples. This is not our decision it is God's will and charge. This is our only biblical and obedient course of action.
As a CHRISTIAN AMERICAN,I am a Christian first and I love my Lord. But I am an American and I love my nation. My entire ministry of 42 years I have done all I could to help America stay righteous and I will do all I can to help her return to the God she once knew and to the greatness she once enjoyed. I believe it is important to PRAY for our government officials ( 1st Timothy 2:1-2 says " I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority: that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in godliness and honesty". I also believe that we are to respect their position and obey them in all ways unless we are commanded to disobey the Supreme Commander and His Supreme Commands, Romans 13:1- 7 says " Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God; the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power resisteth the ordinances of God, and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For the rulers are not a terror to good works. but to evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same. For he is the minister of the God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain. For he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing. Render therefore to all dues: tribute to whom tribute is due: custom to whom custom is due, fear to whom fear: honor to whom honor". In America, we have enjoyed a level of religious freedom that the first century believers never dreamed of and most of the church age has never as well. I pray that our government will protect our religious freedoms so we can live our lives in obedience to God without great suffering. But if it does not we must determine to suffer for Christ if needs be, even as Peter and John who " departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for HIS NAME" (Acts 5:41).
4. Pray Today And Pray Tomorrow!
A nations Spiritual Awakening depends greatly on the prayers of the saints. Let the grief we feel in regards to the decisions of our leaders motivate us to pray and to do so more fervently. To pray for local, regional and national revival. Scripture reveals that two of the greatest revivals in Judah's history came after two of the most wicked kings and leaders in there history. It was then that God heard the prayers of His people and in His mercy He sent better leadership that was enabled to set things straight and bring national revival. Hezekiah and Josiah led a nation back to God at the very heels of national apostasy ( 2nd Chronicles 29-31 and 34-35.) May the church itself return to God via prayer. Prayer of repentance of a lack of passion for God, a loss of knowledge of His Word, a lessening of obedience in service to his Lordship, a selfishness and sensuousness in our souls, and an appreciation of His mercy revealed by an all out sharing of His gospel and glory to a dark world around us. May we stay on our knees until His glory returns first in our own hearts, homes, churches and then in our nation.
5. LOVE YOUR GOD AND LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR!
Our Lord's greatest commandment for us is to love Him first and completely, which includes remaining loyal to His Word. The second commandment is to " love thy neighbor as thyself" ( Matthew 22:37-39).
Love is kind! Love is gracious. Love is merciful! Love is long suffering. Love is patient. Love is not proud. Love is not arrogant! Love is not puffed up and exalt its own principles and priorities. Love is God. And love will confront for the glory of God and the good of man. Without compromising biblical beliefs, real Christianity is to love every person whom God has placed in our lives- including those ignoring and rejecting scriptural teachings. We are to patiently be kind to each of them as we confront them in love with the liberating truth of Christ's gospel and revealed truth. The most loving thing we can do in our society is to warn of that which brings death and to witness of the One who brings life bot earthly and eternal.
6. Live Your Life Eternally not Temporally!
Moment by moment may we seek to see the BIG-TIME PICTURE, the LONG-TERM PERSPECTIVE has not in any way been affected by the Supreme Court's ruling because our God still rules. Our purposes, priorities, principles and perspectives have not changed. Our main goal today is the same as it was 4 weeks ago, 4 years ago, 4 decades ago. It is to Glorify God. We will simply continue believing and behaving as Bible Believing Christians have always done. We will seek to know God as He has revealed Himself to us in His inspired Bible. We will love God, walk in the Spirit, obey His Word, proclaim the gospel, participate in His building His church, and watch for His return. When everything will be made right by the SUPREME JUDGE in HIS SUPREME COURT!
Terry has been the Senior Pastor of Liberty for 30 years. He and his wife, Karen, have 4 children, 11 grandchildren, and 1 spoiled dog named Cooper.