Hope for the Future

Yesterday the Supreme Court handed down its decision on gay marriage, ruling 5-4 to change the meaning of marriage for all Americans.

Of course, this is a legal fiction. The Supreme Court doesn’t “define” marriage; God did, when He created mankind:

[Jesus] answered, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said,‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two but one flesh.What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.” (Matthew 19:4-6)

Nonetheless, this decision sounds the death knell for our culture. God has given America over to its depraved passions (Romans 1:18-31). Christians throughout the nation bowed their heads and mourned yesterday, and rightly so.

But God has given us a new day, and all is not lost. If God is for us, who can be against us?

If you’re still despairing about the future, here are a couple ways to drag yourself out of the Slough of Despond and get your perspective back.

Remember

John Foxe
John Foxe, author of “Fox’s Book of Martyrs”

Since the death of Jesus Christ, the Church has faced opposition from everyone imaginable. Hostile governments, religions, and even false churches have tried to destroy it. Yet God’s people live on, and the world dashes itself to pieces upon the rock of the Church.

Buy, rent, or borrow a copy of Fox’s Book of Martyrs. The Kindle version is free on Amazon at the time of this writing. Read it and remember the Christians who have suffered through history, and what they gave up for righteousness’ sake.

We may soon lose jobs or face fines and prison time for standing by what God says. But Christians through the centuries have lost their lives, singing, for the same faith we have today. God’s protecting hand still covers us, even in the turmoil we now face.

Pray

Christians have been praying long and hard for God to have mercy on America, for it to repent and change its ways. We need not give up on it now. But let’s also turn our prayers outward.

According to Open Doors, a ministry dedicated to serving persecuted Christians worldwide, 322 Christians are killed for their faith every month. Pray for these Christians. Pray for change in the countries they live in. This is one of the ways we unite with the Church universal.

It also gives us a different perspective of the threats facing our part of the Church here in America.

Read

In times like these, the Bible itself is both a comfort and a challenge. We are challenged to stand for truth, regardless of the consequences (Matthew 5:10). We’re also comforted by God’s promises to carry us through to the end (Romans 8:35). And we are reminded to ground our perspective in the eternal:

 “So have no fear of them, for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops. And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.”

(Matthew 10:26-33)

Devote yourself to reading God’s Word, and seeing the world from His perspective.

Preach

Even as America revels in its sin, there will be many who discover to their sorrow that the wages of sin is death. The more depraved the culture becomes, the more people will sicken of its emptiness and look for an alternative to the morass that is secular morality.

The Gospel is that alternative.

The Gospel doesn’t change with the culture. It’s the same as it has always been. “Repent, and believe on Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved.” It’s the only route to the peace and fulfillment that everyone desires. It’s the only way to escape the inevitable judgment of sin.

All around you are people who need the Gospel. Now, more than ever, they will begin to realize it.

The Church’s role in society isn’t ending; it’s just about to begin.

Are you ready?

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