Marx once referred to the religion as the "opiate of the masses". His view was that religion (Christianity in particular) was responsible for the masses not getting angry and mounting a massive revolt against the upper class and rulers. With words like,
- "Blessed are the poor for they shall inherit the earth"
- "Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall see God!"
- "Money is the root of all kinds of evil"
- "Forgive as you have been forgiven"
- "Give unto Caesar that which is Caesar's and give unto God that which is God's"
As I watch this election it seems to me that as our country becomes less and less Christian (and I include so-called Christians that are more concerned with their worldly wealth than with heavenly wealth) we see people becoming increasingly angry towards one another. Everything seems to hinge on the "next election" and whether or not "their guy (or girl) gets into the White House". No matter what after this election I can tell you this: HALF the country will be angry and the other HALF will be elated. One half will call the other illegitimate and the other half will be called bitter haters. Recently I saw a story about a guy who video taped himself running over TRUMP signs on the side of the road. He was caught by the police and he said he thought it was his "moral duty" to run over the signs. REALLY SIR? MORAL DUTY?? My guess he hasn't darkened the doorway of a church in his entire life (at least I hope not). Personally I would like to see someone put their sign in front of a boulder or brick wall and see him plow his vehicle into it just to teach him a lesson in "morals". At a TRUMP rally a man sucker punched a black man who was disruptive and was being removed by security. Why did you have to do that?? Others have jumped on stage and hijacked a candidates microphone and taken over their speaking engagement. Was it their "moral duty" as well?
George Washington referred to religion as the necessary "third leg" of a 3-legged stool for Democracy to work. In recent decades people have been taking a saw to that third leg and now it's almost gone completely and our democracy is teetering on collapse (something these leg cutters want to happen). Each President who has taken office for the first time has paid homage to our countries ability to peacefully transition control from one leader to the next without violence (sometimes referred to as a "peaceful coup"). This "peaceful coup" is based entirely on our religious beliefs that no government provided to man is without God's will. That's a hard concept for many (even Christians like myself) to get behind. How can you support what we might see as an illegitimate government or leader?
Let's see how Jesus handles an unjust political system. First we see Jesus himself put himself 100% in control of the government as he is taken in the night to a Jewish court called the Sanhedrin and even though it is against their own law to try someone at night he allows it to go on. He then is sent to Pilate and allows his ruling to be decided by an angry mob rather than a just judge. He goes to his death as it is the Father's will. When he's on the cross in agony he summons enough energy to stand up on the nails in his feat/ankles and say "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do". Even after he raises from the dead he doesn't tell his disciples to get even with the Romans for his wrongful death. He moves on like it's nothing.
In the book of Acts, we see Peter, Paul and other disciples thrown into prison as well in much the same way. They are unjustly scourged to teach them a lesson and they are overjoyed by God allowing them to suffer for the faith as well. They didn't yell obscenities back at their jailers or floggers and tell them "You just wait until the power pendulum swings back our way and WE are in control!". No, instead they sang hymns in prison knowing tomorrow they may die a horrible death on a cross like Jesus did.
Sadly, too many Christian leaders have thrown their collars into the ring with a variety of political parties and leaders today as well. They too have taught their followers that it's time to "take back your country". Well last I read, taking anything is paramount to stealing. Are we doing God's work or are we fighting against him? Are we too focused on the things of this world and not focused on the things of God? Paul says,
"For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms"We should be spending our time praying that God's word would be effectual in the people's heart and not wasting our time praying for God to get our "guy/girl" into the White House. We should be praying for our children's hearts and minds to not be contaminated by this worlds view on God and not be praying Hillary goes to jail (even though she deserves too). We should be praying for Hillary and Obama that God may reach them too (even if we think their heart is too hard to listen). We should be praying that God's will should be done and not our will.
Let me put it this way....
If God can reach 10 times more people with the Gospel when times are tough and money is scarce, then shouldn't we be OK with an economic collapse? Too many Christians today want only God's blessings on them so they can have it easy. They fear sin taking over our country because God might take his blessing (ie - protection from bad times) from them even though Jesus has already paid for all of those sins on the cross and the only sin left unpaid is unbelief in him. If God does take his "blessing" from us it isn't to punish a long list of abominations but instead to wake up this world and drive them to their knees to repent and be saved.
So what do you pray for when you watch the news? Are you hinging all of your hope and faith on this years election? If Hillary gets elected will you feel God has abandoned you? Will you be angry at God and go off and sulk in a cave like Elijah? Or will you move on to what God wants you to do next?
I myself used to get angry listening to the news and frustrated with how the Obama administration is trying to transform our country into a socialist cesspool. I spent hours reading news stories and watching Fox News. I would send articles to friends on Facebook and wait for their replies. In 2012 I was elated when the GOP regained the Senate but later dismayed as still nothing seemed to get done and Obama continued to move forward with Executive Orders. I waited with anticipation the rulings from the Supreme Court on gay-marriage and also on ObamaCare, only to have my hopes dashed by their ridiculous rulings in which Roberts seemed to contort himself like a yoga-master to make the rulings fit the Constitution in some way.
I came to peace when I read Jesus words,
"All authority has been give to me in heaven and in earth".Those words showed me that those sitting in Washington DC are not the real rulers of this world. Christ rules and is allowing these charlatans to fill in until he comes again. So what if Hillary gets into the White House! Let her have her few years of fame. So what if the GOP collapses into a pile of crap! God still rules and this "temporary tent" will be replaced some day. No longer do I worry about this "next election" or if people will forget their Constitutional rights and fall to tyranny. As for me and my house, nothing changes, we will serve the Lord. Though we may be scoffed at and ridiculed and treated like dirt. It's okay. And I have good company in that view as well. As Paul writes,
As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”This doesn't mean that I stop writing blogs or I stop looking for leaders who are good and honorable. But I can stop fretting over what will happen if things continue to deteriorate. I will let the "opiate" of God's love and forgiveness guide me and not fall victim to the unholy angry masses who surround me.