Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Mid-Week Message - Sin in the United States

 "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."  Isaiah 5:20  (ESV)

There was a time in our history when those who believed in the Word of God accepted what it said as truth.  If God called something sin, then it was understood to be just that.  That doesn't mean that they didn't indulge in those things, only that they understood that they needed forgiveness for what they were doing.  But things have changed.  

Do you remember the Flip Wilson Show?  One of the characters he portrayed was Geraldine Jones.  Her catch phrase, when she did something she shouldn't, was, "The devil made me do it!"  How we laughed at that!  It became a response that we half-heartedly repeated when we found ourselves in a situation we shouldn't be in.  It was funny, but it was an excuse.  The devil, not me or you, was the one responsible. 

Never ones to enjoy the guilt associated with our own error, we have always sought to find a way to rationalize our actions.  That has become even easier to do over the years, as science has worked to find a genetic reason for our proclivities.  Since I know my own sin the best, I will be honest and tell you that I have used all the available excuses for why I am morbidly obese.  Now, doctors say that my body may have been "coded" to gain weight easily and that it may be that it was inevitable.  While I would love to grab onto that explanation and claim it as fact, I know that I am personally responsible for how I have mistreated my body over the years and how I have refused wise counsel that could have saved me from the painful difficulties that I now experience.  

This refusal to accept sin as what it truly is, which is the failure to follow God's directions, has gone far further in our society than just affecting individual lives.  Sin has pervaded our national leadership and is rampant on our streets.  It seems to take little encouragement for mobs to gather who then seek to demean and destroy.  The gradual turn from the Lord that has taken place over the last few decades has brought us to a place where even life itself is no longer valued.  

According to a document produced by Right to Life of Michigan, from 1973 through 2019, 59,902,500 abortions were performed just in the United States.  Psalm 127:3 states that, "Children are a gift from the Lord".  These millions of precious souls were treated as if their lives didn't matter and were "eliminated" as problems that needed to be solved.  Almost daily there are reports of law enforcement officers who are being targeted and gravely wounded or killed.  We are being told that some lives matter more than others but how can that be if Jesus gave His life for each of us?  

There is no magic wand that can be waved to suddenly extinguish the hate and vitriol that we are witnessing, just as there is no magic wand that will prohibit any of us from acting on any sinful thought that we may have.  But, there is something we can do.  Each of us, one by one, must drop to our knees before our Creator and confess our sin and our need for Him.  We need to understand that for those sins our Savior was tortured, ridiculed and crucified.  Then we need to make the choice to return to God's Word and accept it as truth, even though it may mean that we have to forego something we are enjoying.  If we will all do that, we will see a revival like we have never seen before.  That is a big IF, I know.  

Please be honest with yourself and with Him and be open about your faith with others.  Speak up and speak truth.  Don't be afraid of being rejected or yelled at.  Jesus went through those things too.  There is so very much at stake and each life is precious to our Father.  It may be difficult but it is vital.  May you be filled with peace and a fire for Him.  God bless.  

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