Monday, March 27, 2006
The War Rolls On
Is there are war on Christians in America? This is the the current national debate initiated by a conference in Washington, DC. I encourage you to check out this link to read a recent USA Today editorial on this provocative question.
Here is just one snippet from the editorial: To say that there is a war on Christians "trivializes the true persecution of Christians in the early history of the church and the real abuse unleashed on Christians today in some corners of the world."
A good point. However, I would counter with this observation: persecution always begins with intolerance. Persecution in the Roman Empire didn't begin because the emperors were theologically opposed to Christianity; rather, they were politically opposed to Christianity. They found the Christian refusal to declare "Caesar is Lord" unpatriotic and disorderly. Furthermore, Christians proved a convenient scapegoat for the empire's ills.
God promises, however, that Christians' ever changing fortunes are ultimately in his hands. To cite just one example of this pervasive biblical theme, in Revelation (yes, Revelation) we read that "the beast was given a mouth to utter proud words and blasphemies and to exercise his authority..." (13:5). And "he was given power to make war against the saints and to conquer them..." (13:7).
In America, Christians do not face pervasive, violent persecution. God has graciously afforded the church immense opportunities to write, preach, evangelize, and persuade; and to learn, grow, pray, and worship. As the spiritual battle continues to heat up, I pray that we will be wise enough to make use of the opportunities that have been given.
Posted by Ken at 8:49 AM