Daily Devotional for Tuesday September 25, 2012
Christians have Abandoned the Public Square Not Politically but Spiritually
(1 Samuel 8:1-22)
***ASK BILL: Pastor Bill, my mother in law thinks it's not right that my family listens to Christian radio stations. She says the music shouldn't sound like secular music and play instruments such as guitars and drums. She also thinks it's wrong for us to read the NIV version of the Bible. She said the King James version is the one we were meant to read. My husband and I can understand the NIV so much more. Are we wrong?
ANSWER: Sounds like your mother-in-law is part of the Church of Christ. They get very legalistic in certain areas. First, instruments are BIBLICAL, so there is no problem there. Also, there are no English "versions," only English TRANSLATIONS from the original Hebrew and Greek. So to compare one English translation to another is like comparing apples to oranges. You don't compare translation, you have to compare the translation to the original text it was translated from. For the record, the KJV is simply another English translation. Actually, the NAS is the most accurate English translation to the original text, but all of the major ones are fine to read and study.
Christians have abandoned the public square, not politically but spiritually!!! I hear people often say that Christians must never abandon the public square politically so our voice is heard. I agree with that statement 100%. Over the years, I have written extensively how as a Godly citizen, we must be involved in the political arena and exercise our right to vote. I can tell you today without any equivocation that Christians are very active politically and always have been!!!
Going back to the very first elections in this nation, faith has played a huge role. In modern times, Jerry Falwell's "Moral Majority" and Pat Robertson's "Christian Coalition," became the leading groups to organize Christians politically. While many of the social ills we face today have been blamed on Christians abandoning the public square politically, I totally reject that assertion. It has not been Christian Christians abandoning the public square politically, it has been Christians abandoning the public square SPIRITUALLY!
Christians have not been apathetic towards being involved in politics, Christians have been apathetic towards sharing the Truth of the Bible and the Gospel!!!!!!!
The great truth is that Falwell, Robertson, and those today who organize Christians politically, MAKE A FORTUNE!!! They point to the social issues of the day and getting Christians emotionally charged in order to MAKE MONEY OFF THEIR EMOTIONS! Again, I have always been a staunch advocate of Christians being involved in every aspect of our temporal life here, including in the political arena. We need our voice heard in every sector of life, however, the fact is the social ills of our day didn't come about because we weren't involved politically, they came about because we weren't involved SPIRITUALLY!
During the rebellion of the 60's, that rebellion even reached into the sanctuaries of our churches. It was the 60's that began introducing pastors who quit preaching the Truth of the Bible for a more watered down, friendlier message. Many weren't even saved. Entire denominations began embracing the rebellious culture around us. It was not the failure of Christians politically but spiritually, that led to prayer and Bible teaching being taken out of our schools. It was the failure of Christians spiritually that led to legalized abortion in 1973. It was the failure of Christians spiritually that has led to the mainstreaming of homosexuality. It was the failure of Christians spiritually that has seen our culture influencing the church rather than the church influencing the culture!!!
Many are saying that this upcoming election in November is the most important of our time. I agree, but for far different reasons. I told you last November that the key to watch for was if God allowed the next President to be either President Obama or Mitt Romney, since it would mean that God's hand of protection and blessing has finally come off of this nation. The judgment and wrath I warned you about starting in late 2007, has escalated each year and would be in full force no matter which man God allows (It is God who allows men to rise to power, and takes men out of power.) to be our next President.
I have watched in great sadness the past months as satan has distracted Godly men and women in both political parties. I have heard the tortured arguments from those who support President Obama despite the FACT, as I told you would happen 4 years ago, he has been the most pro-baby killing, pro-homosexual, pro-enemy of Israel President in history. On the other side, I have heard the twisted and distorted logic how it is OK to vote for a 5th generation high priest of a satan worshipping cult leading souls to hell thru a false Gospel, whose cult will become mainstream in this nation without him having to say a word, leading untold numbers of souls to hell.
Again, satan has so blinded Godly people in both political parties, the fear mongering on both sides has been so intense, they are willing to vote for pure evil no matter which candidate they support. That is why the great British preacher Charles Spurgeon said, "When faced with a choice of two evils choose neither!" You see my friend, in the end the problems this nation faces are NOT political, they are SPIRITUAL!!! Our only hope and answer is NOT going to be found in any politician or political ideology, but by turning back to God and His Truth!
This is the same scenario as when the children of Israel were so focused on having a king. Samuel told them they had God, but that was not good enough for them and they demanded to have a human king like the other nations had. God told Samuel that it was not he they were rejecting, but it was HIM! We are in that same place today. We are begging for a king. Some want Obama, others want Romney. Whoever it is will turn out to be evil in their own way, just like the various kings of Israel.
Some of the kings were oppressive to the people, destroyed their economy, sold much of their wealth to the other nations of the world. They made Israel weak in the eyes of her enemies. Sound familiar? Some kings worshipped baal, bowed down and honored false gods and led many of the people in this worship of a false deity. God refused to bless their nation because they had forsook Him for the false gods of the world. Sound familiar?
It was only when the people of Israel were judged for their sin and rebellion, when the people of Israel felt the wrath of Almighty God that they repented and turned back to the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. It was only at that point, God began to bless them again. We are in the exact same place this moment as were the children of Israel. God's wrath and judgment has already begun to fall. In the coming weeks and months it will intensify. THE ONLY HOPE WE HAVE TO ESCAPE THE FULL IMPACT OF HIS WRATH AND PUNISHMENT IS TO REPENT OF OUR SINS AND TURN BACK TO GOD AND HIS TRUTH!
I love you and care about you so much. I know many have become so invested in what happens on November 6th, that you are blind, deaf, and dumb. I have done my best, as Samuel did his best, to warn you of what is coming. For over 13 years, faithfully every day, I have delivered God's Word to you. Many have listened and have been blessed richly as they have followed the Lord's will for their lives. Many have scoffed, mocked, and demeaned me, but as the years have gone by, everything I have shared with you and warned you about has come to pass.
Like everyone, I have had choices to make over the years. I knew years ago that Liveprayer could become another major mainstream ministry, making tens of millions each year, loved by tens of millions, featured as one of the shining works of God today. All I had to do was preach to the choir who would be friendly and receptive to the message, soften the Truth so people aren't offended, quit talking about hell, don't remind people of death and their eternal souls, stay away from the difficult issues of the day, tell people what they want to hear to feel better for that moment, and become politically plugged in to the other major ministries. Simple formula that has worked for decades. People would love me, I could have a huge mansion and private jet, and my only worry would be what exotic location would I vacation at each year!
Bill Keller never answered God's call to the minsitry for any other reason than to serve Him, bring His Truth to the marketplace Christians have long abandoned, bring hope to the hurting, and salvation thru faith in Jesus Christ to the lost. Like the OT prophets, most don't want to hear the real truth, most (including Christians) wish I would shut up and go away, people don't want to face the real issues of the day from a Biblcial perspective, and each month I scrape by just to be able to live and preach the next. Instead of love I am hated. Instead of gifts I get death threats. Instead of being admired within the Body of Christ I am scorned for telling the truth. Instead of an exotic vacation I spend each day laboring to share His hope.
You see my friend, I never answered God's call to the ministry for fame or fortune, but to serve my Lord. After 13 years, I have proven I can't be bought, I won't be silent, and I will share with you exactly "what sayeth the Lord" no matter the personal cost to me. The Word you need to hear today is simple. This nation has been and is currently under God's judgment. That judgment will intensify in November no matter who God allows to win the election. The problem is NOT that Christians have left the public square politically, the problem is Christians have left the public square SPIRITUALLY! If we don't return, if we don't unify to lead this nation to repent, turn back to God and His Truth, very soon this nation will cease to exist. THUS SAYETH THE LORD OF HOSTS
In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ,