As Solomon says in Ecclesiastes 3, there is a time for everything, “a time for war,” and I think that we are entering into a time to fight.
Let me explain what I mean…
In today’s society, everyone is incredibly concerned with peace, with not offending anyone, with being “politically correct,” whether on a personal, public, business, or international level. It seems like that is all anyone cares about, and it is a big concern. Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not a huge war advocate, despite what this post is gonna sound like, and I want there to be peace as much as anyone else. Afterall, God tells us in Romans 12:18 “If possible, on your part, live at peace with everyone.” However, I think there is something incredibly dangerous in pursuing peace above all else, especially the way so many in the world define peace.
As I said before, people in the world today are so incredibly easily offended that in order for us to “live at peace with everyone” we have to tiptoe around, keep all of our beliefs, convictions, opinions, thoughts, etc… to ourselves, and apologize profusely anytime something you say or do happens to upset someone else because they don’t agree with it. We are living in an age of relativity where everything is right and valid except for the belief that not everything is right and valid. If you happen to disagree that every belief is correct then your belief is not only incorrect (which fundamentally makes no sense), but you are labeled as an ignorant bigot full of hate and detrimental to society and progress. This is a dangerous world to be living in, but what is even more dangerous is that so many people buy into it hook, line and sinker, and so many people who should be fighting it, are allowing themselves to be conformed to the patterns pf the world we live in.
As Christians there are a lot of things that we fundamentally believe, or at least attest to believe, that fly in the face of the modern “peaceful” relativism that permeates our society. For one, Christians cannot accept or attest that every belief and viewpoint is valid. There may be shreds of truth in most beliefs, most lies have at least some truth in them, but fundamentally, Christianity (more specifically, Christ), if you truly believe, is THE WAY, THE TRUTH. No other variations is valid. Yet, there are many many Christians today who either don’t believe that or don’t live like they do.
When I say it’s time to fight I mean it’s time for Christians to take a stand for Christ, to hold firmly to the hope that they profess and not back down in the face of being ostracized or called ignorant hate mongers. It’s time for Christians to not be ashamed. I mean, if we truly believe that Jesus is the almighty God and Savior of the universe, what is there to be ashamed about? I think this is where the problem lies.
Christians don’t really believe, not truly. I am afraid that there are a large portion of Christians in, specifically, America today that do not really believe, or they believe with their heads, intellectually or socially, but not with their hearts. The faith is not there.
Let me provide an example. This past week I heard someone say that they don’t have any sort of bumper stickers or anything on their car (specifically referring to Christian stickers of any kind) because they don’t want people to see that on their car and see the way they drive. I am using this example, because it is identical to what I have thought in my head on many occasions. “I’m not gonna put anything on my car that identifies me as a Christian, because I don’t want people associating the way I drive with Christians or God.” This is the absolute worst mindset to have. We, and I really mean we because I do this exactly, are choosing to hide God so that we can flaunt our faults and sins instead of believing enough, having enough faith, to truly let God transform us and stand boldly for Him. We are not fighting for God, for our faith, for anything. We are hiding ashamed, and it is time to stop.It is time that we, as Christians, start fighting. We need to stop sitting back and complacently watching the world turn from God while we talk quietly in the comfort of our homes or churches about how sad it is, or boldly shout our opposition from the comfort of our churches, radio stations, etc… w/o actually fighting for what we believe or believing it enough to change our actions.
Actions speak louder than words, always, but sometimes our actions need to be our words. We should not be afraid to enter conversations, to speak the truth, to let people know we are Christians, that we believe, and that we will fight for that faith. Speak the truth in LOVE, always, but we need to stop being to timid to speak in the first place, and we need to have the courage to transform our lives into the image of God, not conform to the world and hope no one knows we are a Christian.
Now there are wrong ways to fight. Westboro Baptist Church is a prime example of this. When I say we need to fight I do not mean we need to seek out everyone who disagrees with us and spew hate in their faces to display our “power” and “truth.” Again, we need to have our every action be based in LOVE.
However, neither do we need to simply go buy chicken on a day when millions of others are as well and somehow think that that means we have met our quota of “fighting” for God, even though a lot of those people will go back to their jobs and never say a word about the issue they were so strongly in support of through their purchase of a chicken sandwich, which they may or may not have bought that day anyways.
We need to be real about what we claim to believe. We not to not water down the truth of God in any way! If we live this way, if we fight for this, are we going to offend and upset some people? Of course we are! Sometimes it is ok if someone is offended, it doesn’t mean you have necessarily done anything wrong. Sometimes people are wrong, and the things they believe are lies. Accepting it and never confronting them about or telling them the truth out of some fear (of offending or being labeled as hateful) is not living in peace with people, it is cowering in fear of some dictatorship.
So I challenge you, let’s start to fight. It’s time to get off hands and out of our comfortable fear and stand up for the One who gives us freedom, for the one who is LIFE and TRUTH.
My favorite author, Ted Dekker, wrote a book called Sinner, that describes a world eerily close to the one we live in now, in which telling people about God is illegal, as it is considered a hate crime stemming from intolerance that assumes that those who don’t believe in God are wrong. This book struck me because of how close to that we already are, and how some of it is already true (it is considered by some to be a hate crime for a pastor to preach that Bible condemns homosexuality). So I encourage you to go read this book, but more importantly to fight because there are millions of people who need to know the love and forgiveness of Christ, but before too long, I am afraid we will all wake up with the realization that sharing that truth is no longer a legal option for us, as it is not in many countries around the world…
Fight. Do not be afraid. “If God is for us, who can be against us?”