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Ungodly, Spiritually Deteriorating Age…
Peace of mind and the tranquility of spirit that accompanies it are only available when we have true peace with God through the sacrifice of Christ on the cross in payment of our sins. Those who attempt to find peace in worldly pursuits will find themselves sadly deceived. For Christians, however, peace of mind is available through the intimate knowledge of, and complete trust in, the God who meets “all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).
There is no debating it. We live in an ungodly, spiritually deteriorating age. The evidence is everywhere. Not only does the media mock and reject Christian morals, but governments are legislating against Christian beliefs. Immoral lifestyles are not only being flaunted, but they are also being pushed upon the Church with religious vigor. To embrace biblical standards is to invite being labeled a bigot or intolerant, cardinal sins in today’s enlightened age.
So what can Christians do? Some are wringing their hands and opting out of engaging society. Many are claiming they will not vote in the upcoming presidential election. Others retreat to their social media accounts and wistfully long for days gone by. Many are bewildered and have no idea what they should do.
In some countries, the oppression and persecution are direct and obvious. These people have no doubt that they live in an ungodly situation. One of the problems Western Christians face is the temptation to believe they live in godly nations when the exact opposite is true. Canada, the US, and others are not Christian nations. True, they were founded on Christianity and still have many outward benefits of that heritage, but the foundation has switched to humanism. The benefits of Christianity are fading and the judgment of God will become more manifest as we go along – unless there are national repentance and restoration of the Laws of God. Western Christians must face the fact that they no longer live in a Godly society. They must begin to ask how they are to live in an ungodly society.
It seemed that society could not possibly sink any lower in degradation and evil, but it always found away. Government leaders were consumed with obtaining and holding on to power. They cared nothing for the people. Government leaders resorted to any depth of violence, deception, or evil if it helped them retain their power. It seemed there was nothing that ordinary citizens could do.
There was a couple, however, who thought otherwise. While the royal babies were being butchered, Jehoshabeath hid the king’s son, Joash, even though such an act placed her own life in peril. Joash was only a baby and defenseless against the evil queen. For six years, Jehoshabeath and her husband Jehoida, a priest, hid Joash in the temple (2 Chron. 23:11-12).
What could a religious leader and his wife do against one of the evilest government leaders ever to rule the land? At first, it seemed as if there was little of significance they could do. They refused to accept the evil condition of their land. They hid a baby. Scripture tells us that, “in the seventh year Jehoida strengthened himself” (2 Chron. 23:1). It was then that Jehoida organized leaders who opposed the evil queen and overthrew her, placing the child Joash on the throne. So grateful was the nation, that when Jehoida died, he was granted the enormous honor of being buried in the City of David among the kings “because he had done well in Israel” (2 Chron. 24:16).
What can we learn from the bravery of Jehoida and his wife Jehoshabeath? Several things.
- In every age, there have been wicked rulers who sought power at the expense of their people. Our age is not unique!
- There is always something godly people can do. Godly people can and must always resist evil wherever they find it. This might mean prayerfully biding your time until the opportune moment to overthrow the current leader. It might mean preserving whatever shred of righteousness is left in the country.
- Godly people can join together. The reason that evil often prevails is that godly people are isolated and divided. Jehoida discovered that there were many people in the land who were opposed to the government. They were just waiting for someone to organize and lead them. Once this happened, the people of God reclaimed their nation.
- God’s people can support the best possible option that God makes available. In the nation’s most perilous time, why did Jehoida give his support to a baby? It certainly could have been easier to rally the nation behind a fully grown, godly prince. But God had not made one of those available! God’s answer, as it often was in the Bible, was a baby. This meant that God’s people had to wait. Joash would ultimately prove to be a disappointment, later in his rule. He was not a perfect ruler. But he was a far better alternative than the ruler he replaced. This has been a truth of history. God often uses faulty, imperfect people to accomplish His purposes.
- God’s people seek God’s purposes for their country. Jehoida did not devote himself to a person, but to God’s purposes. He did not commit his life to help someone achieve power. He devoted his energies to his heavenly King.
So what do we take from this Scripture? Simply this. It is our turn to stand up against evil. It has raised its ugly head in our generation, just as it has in every generation that preceded ours. We must ask, as did Jehoida and Jehoshabeath, what God would have us do to resist the evil of our day. It might seem like something small, such as caring for a baby. It might require great courage as we resist the will of wicked government leaders. It might require waiting until God’s people are organized and have sufficient strength to overturn the inroads that evil has made in the nation. It might require working with imperfect people if that is what God has made available. It will most certainly require us to deny our own preferences as we adjust our lives to what God is currently doing in our nation.
We live in evil times. But, there are still things we can and should be doing. Are you?
Jesus chastised religious leaders in the first century for not knowing the time of His arrival. Will we make the same mistake today? Christ stated how His second coming would be preceded by global events signifying the end of our age. We may not know the day or the hour, but we can know the season!
“And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.” (Joel 2:28.)
Education is useless without the bible (Daniel Webster)
“Courage is as “fear that has said its prayers.”
John Wesley who said that what we tolerate in our generation, will be embraced by the next. Wesley is 100% correct! We are living in sick times.
Usually, the Lord doth no great thing for or against his people, without giving warning of it before it comes.
They perverted justice among themselves (v. 7): “You turn judgment to wormwood, that is, you make your administrations of justice bitter and nauseous, and highly displeasing both to God and man.’’ That fruit has become a weed, a weed in the garden; as nothing is more venerable, nothing more valuable, than justice duly administered, so nothing is more hurtful, nothing more abominable, than designedly doing wrong under color and pretense of doing right. Corruptio optimi est pessima —The best, when corrupted, becomes the worst.
It is impossible to find anyone in the Bible who was a power for God who did not have enemies and was not hated.
2 Corinthians 4:8-11 New King James Version (NKJV)
8 We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed— 10 always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. 11 For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.
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