Spirit of Grace Ministries
Spirit of Grace Ministries
-- Feeding Jesus' sheep
-- Equipping His servants
-- Proclaiming His Gospel

As For Me...

By Dennis Pollock


It would be easy for moral, Bible-believing people to be pessimistic these days. Here in America (and in many parts of the world) our moral fabric is eroding terribly. Almost every moral marker is moving the wrong direction. A sizeable portion of the populace is choosing to throw away centuries-held convictions in exchange for beliefs that would have been considered horrendous just a single generation ago.


We now have educated people arguing vociferously that men who put on pantyhose and a dress should be allowed to use the women's restrooms and go into a stall adjacent to one that might house a small girl. Race-baiters are insisting that all America is "systemically racist" in a time when America has never been less racist, where white men like me can be married to an African lady, live in a state in the deep South, and suffer no persecution, no overt criticisms, no repercussions at all. Nobody we meet seems the least bit concerned that a white husband and a black wife live together, create YouTube videos together, and go to restaurants and garage sales together. Never before in the history of our nation would this have been true. Of course, there are a few throwback racists scattered throughout America, but compared to a generation ago, we have come a million miles. And now schools teach doctrines that would erase all this progress and try to divide us once again by color!


Television has degenerated from simple, decent shows like "Andy Griffith" and "I Love Lucy" into despicable programs where one sex joke is followed by another, each one being accompanied by outrageous laughter coming from computer-stored fake sound effects. Movies are dirtier and more violent than ever in history. Politicians and commentators that stand for righteousness and traditional values are called "white supremacists," even if they are black. Christianity, capitalism, and personal responsibility are mocked and vilified; secularism, socialism, and free money from the government are praised to the heavens. Radical, hard-left, government dependence and control make up the elements of a secular messiah and utopia, which can only lead to disastrous ends.


Church attendance is down, belief in the deity of Jesus Christ is falling, even among professing "Christians," and the idea that the United States is "one nation under God" has become a joke. It could be very, very depressing for those of us who still hold to the words of Moses, and read the Psalms, the prophets, the epistles of Paul, and most of all, the life, words, and teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ.


The Wisdom of Joshua


At this time of Thanksgiving, we need to remember the words of the ancient leader of Israel, the man named Joshua. As he neared the end of his life, he wanted to give his people some words to remember. He told the Israelites:


"And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD." (Joshua 24:15)


Joshua seemed to anticipate the tendency of the people of Israel to stray from the true God and said in effect: "If you want to serve these false idol-gods, fine. Pick your god and go for it. But as for me and my family, we'll stay with the God of Israel, the true and living God who made all things."


We cannot force people to serve the God we love and the Christ we follow. Every person must decide for himself or herself. In some ways we wish we could. We wish we could preach so well, reason so powerfully, and write so beautifully that all our nation would come weeping to the cross of Jesus. But it is not happening. The truth is, our nation, and most of our world is moving in the exact wrong direction. They are moving away from Christ, away from respect for the Bible, and away from traditional Judeo-Christian values. And with all our preaching and Bible-teaching, and Christian music and Christian television programs and Christian YouTube videos and Christian computer software, overall things are not improving. They are, in fact, getting worse.


The Joy of the Lord is Our Strength


We cannot afford to let ourselves become perpetually depressed. We must take on the attitude of Joshua. If people want to fall down and worship the god of secularism, the god of socialism, or the god of big, controlling government, that is their prerogative. We cannot stop them. We will try, of course. We will preach and write and sing and share the gospel of our Savior Jesus Christ. But it is not our job to shove our convictions down the throats of others, nor could we do this if we wanted to. God never forces Himself upon people. After Jesus delivered the man known as "Legion" from all his demons, the people of the community were so shook up that they begged Him to leave. Jesus did not protest; He did not argue, He did not shout or scream or curse them. He quietly took His disciples back to their boat and they went elsewhere. As Joshua might put it, if people desire the idol-gods of the Amorites, "choose for yourselves whom you will serve."


But there is one wonderful choice we can make: we can choose Jesus for our family and our household. Nobody will arrest us for reading the Bible in our homes. We can read the Scriptures as much as we want, pray as much as we want, and go to church as often as we like. And for this we can be thankful. We can be grateful that at a point in our lives, God graciously opened our hearts to heed the gospel, to believe that Jesus Christ came to our earth, lived a perfect life, went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, died on the cross for our sins, and rose again the third day. We will do our best to convince others of these life-changing truths, but even if most go the other direction, we can praise God that we are safe in the ark of Jesus in this ungodly age, knowing that "God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ." (1 Thessalonians 5:9)




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