Happy new year…
Today, we are witness to the ever increasing disintegration of society – with families collapsing, STIs ravaging the population like a modern day plague, and mental illness affecting one in four of the population, with anxiety, depression and OCD becoming for many an uncomfortable and inescapable fact of life (https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/statistics-and-facts-about-mental-health/how-common-are-mental-health-problems/#.XhMe3i2caYU). Add to that growing fears for world peace and anxiety over climate change, coupled with global slaughter of the unborn that last year made abortion the main cause of death worldwide (https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/abortion-again-tops-worldwide-causes-of-death-in-2019-at-more-than-42-million?inf_contact_key=67418701ae455d379241608f93ddd649842e902fbefb79ab9abae13bfcb46658 ), and it does not take a genius to work out that humanity has gone badly astray.
While we persist in rebellion against the way we are made we cannot prosper. Yet still we refuse to acknowledge the writing on the wall. Still we listen to the weasel words of the devil – that we are architects of our own destiny and can have it all. Still we refuse to turn back to God.
If ever there was a need for the Church to stand up and proclaim the truth, this is it. However, in recent years Church leaders, of all denominations, seem to have abandoned the Gospel in favour of a touchy feely, ‘Jesus loves everything’ kind of mantra that more closely reflects the changing fashions and values of the world than the received word of God. They are contributing to, and embedding, the problem. Such a stance can only make a mockery of Christ’s death, impossibly trivialising His sacrifice on the cross.
Fact: Sin blinds us to, and separates us from, God. It is outworking of the eternal conflict between good and evil, and the devil’s main weapon designed to destroy our relationship with God and make us subject to his control. Sin binds us to death.
Fact: Sin nurtures our focus on ‘self’, so that we can no longer see beyond the fog-filled slime that increasingly stifles existence for the greater part of humanity. It stops us from seeing light and truth, and entering into the realm of real life. It destroys hope.
Fact: On the cross Jesus once and for all broke the power of Satan, and restored men and women to that direct relationship with God for which we were first created. But it isn’t automatic. We have to choose.
Admittedly, as result of rebranding, many today are a bit confused about what sin actually is, but this is where the Bible is so important, because from page one it helpfully spells out the difference between right and wrong, and tells us how to live. And it is here that the modern-day Church is so spectacularly failing, because instead of guarding and passing on the unedited Word of God so as to lead people into life, it increasingly affirms and promotes prohibited behaviours, reclassifying them as ‘good’. Even worse, it joins with modern culture in affirming these same behaviours and promoting them to children, thereby exposing them to great harm.
This is the devil’s teaching, where sin is seen as no more than a meaningless irrelevance imposed by narrow minded and judgmental bigots, who are incapable of appreciating freedom and the true nature of love.
At every level this is wrong. Real love can never accept sin, because real love holds out the promise of healing and redemption for the sinner. It promises wholeness.
The truth is that the devil is battling to take back control from God. He cannot win, but under his influence many will find themselves consigned to hell – the living hell now of loneliness, sickness and fear, and the eternal hell of separation from God. The only way we can escape this fog of mind-numbing delusion is by once again turning to Christ, and living by the truth. For humanity to be saved, it is imperative that the Church re-awakens and once again stands on the Word of God. For humanity to be saved, it is vital that we all speak out.
This year it is time for the mouse to roar!