As we look around at society tearing itself apart around us it is easy to lose sight of our call as Christians in this world. Pick a sin set out in the Bible and the world is currently celebrating it somewhere as enlightenment and trying to cram it down everyone’s throat as the new normal. The desire to rant and rave about rescuing society from the “bad guys” and shake the Bible in people’s faces as our authority just about drives me batty sometimes. I want to fix the world for Jesus. I want to fix the world for me and my family. I want to fix the world for the sake of the world. What could be wrong with wanting to legislate for Jesus?
The problem is that this desire is not necessarily biblical. Doing good things certainly is, but fixing societal issues in the name of Jesus without people coming to Jesus – not so much. Jesus had every opportunity to come and establish His earthly kingdom during His first coming. He certainly has the power and authority to do so and setting up even just one country that belongs just to Him and Him alone would have been easy. Only Chik Fil-A would have been allowed to be served in Christainistan. The Romans would have been no match for the King of Kings. He specifically did not though and as the anger and debate over social issues in America swirls it would be wise to keep this fact in mind. “My Kingdom is not of this world” proclaimed Jesus in John 18 and Jesus was not simply talking about the world at the time He faced Pilate.
Though Jesus is in charge of all things and the maker of this world, during this the church age, there is a basic separation between what belongs to Jesus and what and who is in darkness. The Church is the Bride of Christ, indwelt and sealed by the Holy Spirit and waiting for the marriage supper of the Lamb. The World is not the Bride and is therefore in darkness, imprisoned by sin and blinded by the things of this world. The Church is filled with the truth of Jesus Christ through Him, the Word. The World is dead in its sins and trespasses and incapable of even comprehending the truth.
So though I also grieve the direction that my country is going and am pained by the damage that I see every day as a Christian who loves God’s Word, we should not be surprised by it. The world does what the world has always done since the time of Christ, it rebels in diverse and varied ways and seeks approval for its actions.
While I know that there are many who are called to fight the specific battles involved in the culture war that is raging, we should never lose sight of the only foolproof weapon in that war, the Gospel. The world cannot be argued out of being fallen sinners, only Jesus can bring new life and the desire to turn away from sin. You would not argue with a corpse would you, so why as Christians do we get caught up in debates with those who are incapable of comprehending? Even if they agree, they are still dead in their sins and trespasses. If one brushfire of debauchery is put out for a time, without new hearts seeking to follow Jesus, another will spring up in no time. The only thing can change the situation with any certainty, that can bring new life, is the simple message of the Gospel.
How do I know this? Well, before I was a Christian, I was on the opposite side of just about every cultural debate taking place currently and could argue until my opponent was blue in the face and was so exasperated they would give up.. It was only the truth of Jesus that destroyed my arguments, revealed the true heart of my rebellion and brought me into His true Kingdom. It is only the Good News of Jesus that build up this Kingdom so preach it, again and again.
The Lord is coming back to settle all arguments and handle all cultural debates definitely. Every knee will bow and acknowledge His judgments and righteous and true. In the meantime, since we can trust in that we can just preach the Word.