Culture Wars Ain’t Stopping Nothing.
In light of the rapid moral decay America is experiencing, many Christians feel pressured to compromise in their faith. Some are immobilized by the fear of persecution. As the walls of social, economic, and political persecution are pressed in on us, it becomes easy to allow our emotions to convince us that Christians are being pushed-back by darkness. Secretly we fee like evil is having it’s way with the world. As Christ followers adopting such a defeated mentality would be a huge mistake! There is no doubt that the world we’re living in is going crazy right now. No argument there. But even in the moral crisis we’re currently facing due to culture wars over racism, same-sex marriage, abortion, and terrorism we should rejoice! This is not an obligatory, dutiful kind of rejoice. “Oh let’s rejoice in our suffering because we’re Christians and the Bible says so…yay.” This is a —“Let’s grab the victory banner and start waving that thing like crazy ‘cause we’ve won!” — type of rejoice. Do you think God is panicking right now? No. And neither should you. Here are four reasons Christians should rejoice over the culture wars.
#1 Our eyes are opened to spiritual warfare.
The culture wars have inspired so much division in America, even amongst friends—especially via social media. If I had a nickel for every Facebook status that begins with “To all of my white friends…” or “To all of my black friends…”, I’d be closing on a house right now. Seriously, y’all? Don’t add fuel to the flame. Though it may seem like we’re fighting against people, the reality is we’re engaged in spiritual warfare against the enemies of God. Ephesians 6:12 says, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places (ESV).”
When we consider the aggressive push for immorality in our nation, we can’t help but notice that the enemy is serious about leading as many to damnation as possible. We must remember that God has already declared victory over all of His enemies (Rev 20:14, 21:8), but this does not negate our responsibility to engage in spiritual warfare by participating in the building of God’s kingdom (Acts 1:8). That means praying for those who don’t know God, communicating the gospel in word and deed, and raising up our children and fellow believers to fear God and serve Him alone.
#2 We’ve realized that America is not a Christian nation.
Though our country was founded on Biblical principles, America is a far cry from a Christian nation. (You only need to watch the local news to figure that out.) It is tempting to lump patriotism together with religious conviction —especially in the south— but with practices such as abortion and same-sex marriage being pushed and liberties such as the right to denounce those practices being stripped away from us, we don’t have the ground to make such a claim. But this isn’t a bad thing!
Without the facade of “Christian heritage” (dressed up nominal or pseudo-Christianity), believers have the opportunity to present a pure gospel to their fellow countrymen and the hearers won’t have any presuppositions to confuse the message. They’ll have a real chance to understand that salvation is God’s gift and results in a heart change, rather than getting it confused with being “religious,” a “good person,” or “American.”
America losing it’s “Christian” title also helps the Church shed dead weight from people bearing the name Christian, but who are not truly believing or practicing Christ followers. I’m tired of Christians getting credit for pseudo-Christians’ behavior. Aren’t you? Be grateful that the true church will be more distinguished from the world due to the culture wars.
#3 Christians are engaging the culture.
God is not surprised by our nation’s aggressive move towards ungodliness, or by how we as individuals in the body of Christ have taken for granted our religious liberties —to freely practice and share our faith with our neighbors. Now this question remains: “What will Christians in America do as their religious liberties are being attacked?” The church has been sleeping on the culture. Ask yourself: “Have I been passive and apathetic towards the spiritual attacks from the enemy on my local community? In what ways have I been failing to offer biblical perspectives to the problems and concerns of my family, peers, coworkers, and friends?”
Thanks to the culture wars, Christians have become more sensitive to the need of those around them to hear biblical truths on a holistic level. If you don’t know how to give a reason for your faith in light of the issues plaguing our country, you’re at least recognizing that you need to learn how to do that. (I suspect that’s why you’re reading this.) Every conversation about what’s taking place in society is an opportunity for you to offer the Biblical perspective on the issue and to tie it into gospel solutions.
#4 Authentic conversions are growing.
When Christ said that He is going to build His church, and that the gates of hell won’t prevail against it (Matt 16:17-19), He was for real y’all. Do you seriously think the culture wars are putting a dent into what God is doing in the hearts of His people?! In fact, with the economic, social, and political odds stacked against Christians right now, more people are coming to Christ for the right reasons than —arguably— what we have seen in our churches in the last decades! Let’s briefly take us out of this America-centered perspective. Remember that persecution is taking place in countries around the world where people are actually being tortured and killed for their faith, but more and more people are turning to Christ! We’re talking North Korea, Northern & Central Africa, Southern Mexico, the Middle East, & more! Many Christians caught in sin are also beginning to recognize their own need to repent and turn back to the Lord after spending seasons of their lives in disobedience.
A wise man once said, “Pain will make you read a Bible.” If our present suffering, discomfort, and fears produced by the culture wars will help us recognize the dangers of going our own way and lead us to take refuge in God, then my cry is: “Let the battle rage on! And may more souls find salvation & peace in Jesus Christ—not their government, political party, money, skin color, or sexual orientation!” What say ye, my friend?
God bless you as you lean on the Lord for understanding during these crazy times.