“Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.” — Thomas Paine: The American Crisis, No. 4, 1777
Let’s face it, most Christians (as with most Americans) in America today are more or less spectators in our “self-governing” American system. For that matter, most of us are spectators at just about anything not related directly to work or recreation. Through the last presidential election season I became much more involved in politics than I ever intended or wanted to, but through it I gained a perspective on politics that I would have never had otherwise. More importantly I have gained a sense of responsibility.
We live in a time and place today in America that is unique to Christians but that has been all but forgotten and our opportunity to influence has been squandered. Everyone in this country is in the unfortunate position of having been born into the “current” generational condition of our nation. But generations of church going Americans have sat comfortably by while the devil has been hard at work in the halls of power.
Two facts all but guarantee that we will continue down a path of deteriorating empire in the future if we continue the current level of Christian involvement in societal and political affairs.
- We have never experienced Christian life in the purer American Republic as it was established by the founding fathers.
- Our attitudes and acceptance of the American society we do live in are drastically separated from the origins and guarantees of our liberty and freedoms and thus are influenced by a lack of knowledge, appreciation, passion and commitment to the foundations of our Republic.
Generations of Americans have participated by default in the great sins of gradual complacency, conformity, and carelessness with the blessing of liberty in America. For decades the church in America has done this faithfully, usually not realizing it. Sure there has been the occasional watchman who pointed to the slipping of responsible patriotism and sounded a warning. But the overwhelming trend has steadily marched down this path since the earliest days of our young country’s founding.
One virtue stands out as having been lost or minimized to allow such a loss of the very soul of America; Vigilance.
1Peter 5:8,9 says “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.”
In Galatians 5:1 we are told by Paul to “stand fast in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free..” In other words we are not to live in the “bondage” of a legal relationship to God because Christ has freed us from it. That freedom doesn’t allow us to live however we want without consequence in our lives, however the”yoke of bondage” is unnecessary because we are free.
If God gives us the freedom to accept liberty and thus avoid inevitable bondage spiritually, what makes us think he wants us any less free personally as individuals and civilly?
1Peter 5:8, 9 and Galatians 5:1 both speak to spiritual responsibility. You could deduce that freedom and liberty come with the responsibility to be sober and vigilant. That is applicable to all areas of our lives. We are responsible for the moral condition of our personal lives. In America as a “self-governed” people; we are responsible for the moral condition of the government to which we submit ourselves to.
If we are not vigilant, how can we recognize the yoke that now burdens us? We are yoked to an oppressive system that was not intended to be anything like what it has become. Lack of concern and involvement over generations in the political process by a “moral” majority has allowed the yoke to grow to the point that it is widely accepted as unchangeable.
We need now more than ever to be vigilant and sober, to take responsibility and be the salt and light in our country. Prayer and revival is available and an unstoppable force in correcting course. Everyone has a voice and it needs to be heard now in prayer and in city hall as well as in the ballot box.
“The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave.” — Patrick Henry