I miss the dog days of summer when there was very little news beyond the weather. This summer has been crazy. We’ve had church shootings, threats of terror attacks, a high-visibility pastoral moral failing, and a landmark Supreme Court ruling that some call equality while others say it is the redefinition and devaluation of the holy sacrament of marriage.
This weekend we celebrate 4th of July and our nation is on high alert for terror attacks. Three recent attacks across Europe and the Middle East make this warning more credible than ever.
On top of real news, Obama haters are resurrecting Clinton era conspiracy theories of a liberal president in his lame duck term making a last ditch effort to hang on to power by finding an excuse to launch a massive military campaign to establish martial law. In Clinton’s day, the Y2K bug was the excuse. Today Walmart closings and a cryptic plan called Jade Helm will transfer our sovereign power to the United Nations.
Alarmist bloggers paint a picture of dooms day, especially for people of faith. Fear mongers have the church in the middle of a bad Nicolas Cage plotline, but their narrative is self-indulgent and claims continue to go unsubstantiated. I would love to see documentation or, at least, some verifiable, anecdotal substation rather than soap box story telling.
As far as freedoms being eroded, I think we are already there with the Patriot Act, the unlimited reach of the NSA, and the Snowden affair. Not to mention high-tech espionage sponsored by foreign governments and criminal gangs. The infrastructure for limiting our freedoms has been in place for at least four decades, and as technology improves, so does the ability and reach of the surveillance state I’ve grown up in.
If you’re a follower of Jesus and you’re reading this, we’re not as bad off as believers have been in the past. Nor are we suffering the way brothers and sisters in faith are this minute in numerous places around the globe where being a public Christian earns consequences ranging from detention to death. We need to make ourselves much more aware of church history and ancient heritage. When we look at what the first century church had to endure under Roman rule and temple politics, we are still much better off.
As people of faith, we are to always expect, in every generation and under any world-political system, to find ourselves out of sync with the systems and culture of the world. It has always been so with the historic church of Jesus Christ. The church is most impotent when in step with culture or in collusion with government.