As I've gone about my day, in the back of my mind, several other thoughts have come to mind regarding my former post regarding the church's decent into pride, callousness and confusion.
The first thought that came to my mind has been coined as a 'social issue'. In Jesus' day there were 'social issues' but Jesus didn't address them as such. He addressed them as issues of righteousness. He addressed issues of the time based on the Word; the statutes that so easily got blanketed and mired under the arguments and terms that 'social issues' layered on them. He set the record straight. He usually didn't agree with anyone, which was a good indicator. People want to be right. They want their agenda to be 'approved'. Whether they want to try to make a fool out of God or they want to get God to say they are 'good', its all about them. But Jesus was fully sacrificial. His will was the Father's will. That's what mattered. And as Christians, the temple of the Holy Spirit, that should be the same.
Recently, I was reading about a young man and how he forced his way into a school and killed 26 people within 5 minutes. He did so with specific types of weapons that obviously work very fast and are very effective. The security protocols placed at the school were of little use since the weapons were so powerful. Those who made attempts to stop the killer suffered injury or were killed.
The incident I'm sharing is true and is one of the most controversial hot topics in American society today. People argue at great lengths about these weapons. It is a 'social issue'. One side argues that these weapons are powerful and do a severe amount of damage in a short amount of time so something should be done by law to make it harder, in some way, to do so much damage. The other side of the argument believes this idea infringes on their rights and to do anything will only threaten their right to own such weapons.
No matter what people want to add, this IS the argument of both sides. One voices concerns about the problem. One voices concern about their rights.
I can't say that I've heard every argument on both sides. I've heard some on both sides. I am not interested in making this a post about a 'SOCIAL ISSUE'. This is a post about problems in the church.
Now, it has become clear to me that those who argue for their rights tend to be conservatives and a very large portion of them are Christians. To me, this speaks to the sickness that pervades the church. Here is why.
As Christians, we are called to forfeit our rights, as Christ did IN EVERY WAY. Protecting something for ourselves is not in the Christian equation in ANY way. It is give all and surrender all. I've been told, 'Well, you are taking that too literal.' I've also been told, 'That's radical.' Well, the Word of God is to be taken literal and if you've accepted Christ, you ARE radical. If you aren't radical, then you probably aren't a Christian. You're probably lukewarm. Not a good thing to be in the mouth of God.
So, either just stop being a Christian and choose to hold onto your rights (til they pull them out of your cold, dead hands, perhaps) or become a Christian and give up ALL RIGHTS. Scripturally, this is what Jesus would tell you to do. Not so different as he told the rich young ruler. It's a matter of the heart. Get rid of the pride. This is making you sick. As a consequence, it is making the church sick.
I hear people say, 'I want to protect myself.' Personally, this doesn't bother me. It probably doesn't bother God. As long as your heart is right. As long as you always know God is your greatest protector. As long as you know the Word of God and your greater weapons of warfare are not carnal. As long as you are not living in fear. What is in your heart? Fear? What are you scared of? Why? Only you can answer the question, 'Do I trust this physical weapon more than I trust God? Is this weapon an idol?'
AND THE LOVE OF MANY WILL WAX COLD.
Love waxing cold. Underneath the weight of personal agendas of 'rights' and 'protection' and the lack of surrendering of fears, Christians are saying very often that these weapons (like the ones that killed 26 people in 5 minutes-21 were young children) are no more dangerous than any others. 'Anything can be a weapon'. It's a frightening phenomenon to me. One of several I've picked up on among Christians in this nation. It speaks volumes. One might think it is denial. I've asked myself, 'Do these people REALLY believe that these weapons are not as dangerous as they are? That other weapons are more dangerous or are AS dangerous? Do they truly believe these statistics they have pulled together from websites that are completely fictionalized?' The University of my EYEBALLS can tell you that no other weapon (except God) can kill 26 people in 5 minutes except for a specific type! And statistics of trusted institutions validate this. AS IF IT NEEDS TO BE SAID! Yet, it does. STOP TURNING DEATH INTO AN ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM.
THE LOVE OF MANY WILL WAX COLD.
It is a symptom of love waxing cold. When it becomes more important to deny the reality of a danger than to admit to it and that danger involves deaths of people; children and people continue to deny or lie or commit themselves to an argument that a type of weapon is not so dangerous, this means the rights and agendas of people have become more important than the lives of others. This IS THE TRUTH of the matter. And most don't want to hear it. They will argue and become furious at the thought of it. But it is extremely symptomatic of the problems in the church. The lost? Oh, I expect them to behave this way. THEY ARE LOST!!!! Christians? No. I don't. Such pride and personal agendas need to be repented of and abandoned. Does this mean get rid of your weapons? No. It means get rid of the pride. Get rid of the sin. Get rid of what is making you sick and the church sick. That is all that means.
Fear. On the other side of the argument. As Christians, if we fear physical weapons more than we trust in God, then we need to also check our hearts. Why do we have such deep fear? Why don't we trust in God? And if people are going so far in their argument to dedicate time and energy toward eliminating these weapons totally, then have you made this agenda your idol? What should your agenda be? ALL CHRISTIANS SHOULD HAVE THE SAME AGENDA--THE GREAT COMMISSION. FULL SUBMISSION, FULL SACRIFICE. FULL SERVICE.
I think it wouldn't be hard to see what Jesus' answers would be on all of this. He'd come at it from the Word of God. He'd go straight to our hearts. What's in our hearts? He'd call us all to repent, forfeit our rights, trust in Him and to serve.