By Jonathon Moseley – BarbWire guest contributor
The United States is collapsing as suddenly and dramatically as the fall of the Roman Empire. Before we consider political or national issues, even just the most basic elements of civilized society are eroding before our eyes.
Surveys consistently show that the vast majority of Americans believe in God. Actually, no, they don’t. Our culture has a well-accepted concept of the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, and God. Tens of millions of Americans “believe in God” only in the same way they subscribe to the social ritual of toying with the Easter Bunny each Spring.
Fundamentally, a society’s concept of who Jesus Christ is will determine its entire well-being, nature, and make-up. The yeast leavens the entire loaf of bread. For this insight, credit belongs to a pastor (then) from Boston, Massachusetts. Craig Terndrup (author of the song “Blow the trumpet in Zion”) once preached how he was seeking God in prayer, deeply distressed that the Christian Church in the U.S.A. was not getting its message across.
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Pastor Terndrup describes how God showed him that our society is a perfect reflection of what the Church preaches. Trouble is, society responds to the overall average of all the mixed messages from the various churches. Society responds to a mish-mash of contradictory preaching. And what society is hearing is a watered-down Christ and lots of varying opinions. Is it any wonder that Americans believe that it doesn’t matter what you do, God loves you no matter what, when a “feel good gospel” is what society keeps hearing? (Should I name names?)
Most Americans accept the cultural concept of a God. It is socially polite to give lip service to God. But most Americans don’t really believe in a genuine, supernatural intelligence who is all powerful, eternal, all-knowing, and superior to us.
Jesus has been replaced with an empty cliché, no better than the Tooth Fairy or the Easter Bunny. The loss of the actual Jesus Christ is causing America’s decline into spiritual darkness.
Many people who insist they are Christians will blow a gasket if you mention that Jesus is God. I know. This author has spent a decade debating hundreds of self-proclaimed Christians in various contexts. They will be offended if you question their Christianity. But nothing upsets more people more quickly than asserting that Jesus was not just a man but the eternal God. Your author has the scars to prove that.
Jesus Christ is God. Yet our nation is not being told that. Was Jesus just an itinerant carpenter? Or was He God? Doesn’t that kind of change your perspective on whether you should stop and take the time listen to what He has to say?
Furthermore, Christianity is a monstrous evil until you grasp that Jesus is God. If God just grabbed a random man and dumped all the sin of the world on some innocent man, this would be unjust and unspeakably wrong. In fact, the person who died on the cross is God Himself. The one against whom we sinned is the only one who could die to forgive us those sins.
The Bible prophesied 700 years before Jesus was born in Isaiah 9:
“For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor,
Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
7 Of the increase of His government and peace,
There will be no end,
Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom,
To order it and establish it with judgment and justice
From that time forward, even forever.” (NKJV).
Wait! How can a “Mighty God” be born as a Child? How can the “Everlasting Father” be born as a Son? How can the same person be both a Son (Child) and Everlasting Father at the same time? The Old Testament foretold that the eternal, everlasting Father, the Mighty God would be born as a child (a Son) unto the people of Israel. Copies of this scroll of Isaiah were preserved from 300 BC among the Dead Sea Scrolls until 1946.
Jesus often received worship from His followers. That would be blasphemy under the Mosaic Law if Jesus were not God. Jesus was required to stop those worshipping Him and probably stone them. But Jesus was God. So it was correct for Him to receive their worship as God.
Thomas declared: “My Lord and My God!” to Jesus’ face. Yet it is blasphemy to call a man God. Jesus was obligated to tell Thomas “No, I am not,” under the law of Moses. Instead, Jesus agreed with Thomas in John 20:29 “Jesus said to him, “Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.” When Thomas called Jesus God, Jesus approves of Thomas “believing” in Jesus – as being “My Lord, and My God.”
The Apostle John was closer to Jesus than any one. Yet John wrote in John Chapter 1 that in the beginning Jesus was both with God and was God and that Jesus created everything that exists. Jewish leaders were preparing to stone Jesus because Jesus was claiming to be God. Listening to Jesus in person, Jewish experts of the law understood that Jesus was saying Jesus was God.
Now the love of many has grown cold, as we become a nation of takers. We don’t care who gets hurt as long as we benefit. The core fabric of America is disintegrating rapidly before our eyes, on such basic issues as lying, no shame, the loss of conscience (seared as with a hot iron), disregard for human life, disrespect for others, stealing (using government or shoddy work to take from others), selfishness, laziness, etc. Entertainment and recreation rather than responsibility dominate our lives.
Africa and the Philippines are sending Christian missionaries to evangelize the United States. These missionaries openly recognize that the United States is now in need of evangelization more than traditionally unreached nations.
Officially communist China is rapidly becoming the most Christian nation on Earth. Purdue Professor Fenggang Yang projects that China’s Protestant community will grow to 160 million by 2025, compared with only 159 million in USA in 2010.
We must rediscover and reassert the real Jesus Christ to save our country. The Church is not preaching Jesus. All Churches mention His name. But we are not teaching who Jesus actually is.
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.