Acts 12; Joshua 15-17; Job 28
Our country has changed quite a bit in recent years. From our inception as a country there was an understanding that morality was based upon an objective standard. The basis of that objective standard was the Bible. Obviously, there were areas of governance not covered directly in God’s word, but the overall foundation for morality, and thus our laws, was found in the principles of the Bible. (Contrary to the claims of those who say “You can’t legislate morality!” the truth is that all legislation is a product of the morality of the people.) In recent years, though, we have had a massive shift in our thinking. Politicians use polls to determine their positions, judges overrule legislation based on their own personal morality, and the foundation for our national morality has become the elusive “will of the people” where right is determined by polling, media influence, and political power. Government has become supreme and infiltrates in all areas of our lives. Like the people of Tyre and Sidon fawning over Herod, we have lifted up our government beyond its true stature: “They shouted, ‘This is the voice of a god, not of a man.’ Immediately, because Herod did not give praise to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died.” (Acts 12:22-23) While I don’t expect our government to get eaten by worms and die, the truth is that nations tend to fail when they turn away from their original strength and source of power. We are seeing more and more that followers of Christ, Christians, are being called to make decisions where following their faith will set them at odds with a government that seeks to be a god instead of allowing people to follow the one true God. Those instances are few and far between at this time – they still make the news – but as those opposed to the freedom of Christians to practice their faith gain power with each victory, the attacks will increase. Other Christians around the world are facing severe persecution for practicing their faith. At one time, the hope for protection from persecution was in America. The time is coming when our country will no longer be a refuge; as followers of Jesus we will become refugees in our own land. Pray for brothers and sisters in Christ to remain strong.
Lord God, I pray that I might always remain true to my commitment to You. When I misunderstand what that means, please draw me back to You. I pray for brothers and sisters in Christ who are being attacked for their faith wherever that might be. Help them to stand strong with You. Let us be salt in a world that has lost its flavor.
(yep, still haven’t caught up)