by Pastor Tim Burt
Proverbs 16:12 (MSG) says, “Good leaders abhor wrongdoing of all kinds; sound leadership has a moral foundation.”
The United States is and has been a move of God in it’s formation and in the earth despite it’s faults and atrocities within our history. Atrocities happen when people do not adhere to the guidelines for living that God has given. Our country became a place where the gospel was freely preached, where Jesus Christ and all of scripture was exalted, and the U.S. became a mission base for the gospel to reach the rest of the world. It was the Judeo-Christian ethic that gave this country a moral code and standard that permeated our society. The original school text-books talked about God and scripture in the midst of their focused subjects. There was a standard for respect and etiquette in most schools and homes. It was the gospel that helped blacks endure racial injustice. It was the gospel that pricked the hearts of men to end the injustice of slavery. Our country has had to live with the pain of being reluctant and sluggish to correct wrongs and injustices within our culture, but that will always be the case when we are not all in sync with God’s word and ways. But God’s Word working as a living truth in the hearts of men and women who fought for justices such as the end of slavery and equal treatment for all, helped forge those changes over time. The change of society from the influence of God’s Word has always been a slow process in any culture of people, and why I believe God is so patient not to judge a misguided society.
As a Pastor and Christian, and from my understanding of scripture, I believe that Christians in this country are living in their last chance from God to get things right. That responsibility does not lie on the backs of those who do not believe in Christ. It falls on the backs of those that do. It is a calling to fervent prayer while rejecting and resisting the immorality that only seems to increase year by year.
Every year the moguls of media and education seem to try to redefine what normal is in this world. Cable networks are in revolution of profanity, sexual perversion, and sexual free-for-all. Homosexuality and transgender have judicially been forced upon us and our children as normal. The name-calling and labels have now been placed on those that disagree with these lifestyles or who try to uphold any kind of Christian moral lifestyle. The fact is, more than ever, we are in a day where evil is called good and good evil. In saying that, I am not calling a person, a people group, or a culture of people, evil. I am calling the activities and behaviors that are contrary to God’s word evil. That would include anything that anyone might do that would be inappropriate.
Jesus died for us so that we could be forgiven of our sins. If we love Him and live to walk after His ways, His Word, and the leading of His Spirit—that is what He asks of us. Will we ever fail in that process? Of course we will! That’s why we need Jesus to begin with. Only His mercy and grace pave the way for any of us to obtain Heaven’s residence. Only the leading of His Spirit and the instruction of His Word help us stay on His path in this life. But forgiveness of sin and His great mercy and grace does not create an acceptance for what God has described as sin. Sin never has and never will be acceptable to God, nor should it be to us! And the conversation is not about making God angry! God is love and is full of love—not anger. He is trying to lovingly draw us into His ways. He is not throwing lightning bolts at us or killing us with pandemics, car accidents, cancer, disease, or devastating acts of nature. He is trying to reach us by His goodness—by His blessings that touch our life and make us thankful. Romans 2:4 says, “… that the goodness of God leads you to repentance.” This world was never created by Him for the functioning of sin. Sin is a curse. It steals from us and destroys lives. It takes society everywhere it does not want to go!
Evil being called good, and good being called evil is not a new thing. But it is a dangerous thing! Every society that has embraced sin and made it it’s norm instead of seeking God’s instructions for righteous living, has collapsed at one time or another. No society is immune from the effects of embracing sin. There were times when God would warn His people when they got off track. They would get caught up in the cultures of the world around them and stray from the way God intended for them to live. They would pull further and further back from the Lord and before long they would begin to call what was considered evil by God, good, and what was considered good by God, evil. God warned them of making this mistake. Isaiah 5:20 NKJV “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.”
Today, I want you simply to understand this: the truth of God’s desires for society and culture are given only to us by God’s word—ways which never change. Hebrews 13:8 says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” What God considers evil will always stay evil. What God considers good will always remain good. Do not tolerate evil in your life. Pursue good with all your heart.
In life’s quest, be sure that you look for the good in people and love them for the good you find. That does not mean you accept evil behaviors. Do not build a tolerance for evil out of those relationships. Oppose evil so it will not consume you. Oppose it so that you can be a light to a dark world. Oppose it by sharing the love and acceptance of Jesus.
It also does not mean you become anyone’s judge or jury. I receive Jesus’ love in my own life while never accepting any sinful or wrong behaviors or attitudes. As I see them, I will expose them by confessing them to God and asking for His grace to change. That is all any of us can do. Oppose evil because God hates evil and the destruction it permeates on mankind. Be vocal and call evil what it is—even in the midst of persecution. Don’t attack people because most every person has good that they do and evil that they succumb to. But oppose evil behavior and resist it in your life and in our society. Personally live a higher standard with the help of the Holy Spirit in you! Not so you can become a self-righteous snob, but a godly example for others. And do what you can to prevent it from ever become a norm in our society! Speak out. Oppose bad policy. And do so appropriately with love as your guide! And most of all, pray daily—every day that God forgive us personally, and our nation for it’s sins. Pray that God reach the hearts of our leaders, and remove selfish and wicked leaders that will not yield their lives and leadership to Him. Pray daily that God raise up godly and righteous men and women who love Him and who will yield their leadership to Him. We never hate people. We hate sin and pray and do our part appropriately representing the Lord, to bring about change. In the end, this is how change will come to our nation. And if not, we will suffer the consequences of walking away from His love and grace!
2 Chronicles 7:14 (NKJV) “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land”
In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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