The world is on edge. Every newscast highlights all that is wrong around the globe. The Russia-Ukraine conflict has been in the headlines for months, and the images are heartbreaking. Thousands have been displaced or killed. Homes have been destroyed, reminding us that earthly possessions can be lost in the drop of a bomb. Our own streets offer up more dreadful pictures. From looting, to drug use, to senseless attacks in broad daylight; everyplace appears to be a warzone. No wonder tensions are high.
We should not be surprised. Societies are sure to degenerate when the spiritual component is neglected. Unfortunately, America is a prime example. Belief in God and country were once admirable traits. Now, they are the objects of late-night comedians and ridicule. Scripture exposes the downward trajectory that elimination of the Creator inevitably brings. It is a pitiful picture that we see developing every day (Romans 1:18-32). If we look around, we will witness the wrath of God on full display.
He will let people go however they choose, and that never works out well. Jesus never begged anyone to follow Him. He set forth the conditions and allowed them to select. A rich ruler refused (Luke 18:18-27). A hated tax-collector accepted (Mark 2:14). The Prodigal Son was given more than he deserved and squandered it (Luke 15:11-32). There is nothing quite as sad as God’s children throwing away their eternal blessings for a temporary, decadent lifestyle. It was his choice. So was going home. The pigpen experience has a way of opening our eyes. At least, it should.
America is in the ugliest of pigpens, and that’s why it is a country on edge. Rejecting God is a dead-end decision. Yet, the Lord gives us the option. He is King of kings and Lord of lords, no matter what we decide. He has not abdicated His throne and never will. We can discard His authority but can never escape it. We will come face-to-face with Him as judge.
The word of the Lord is filled with examples of the futility of losing sight of our Creator. Humans might think that they have marched off into wisdom but it is actually foolishness. He has shown us, warned us and explained to us how devastating it is to forget Him. Yet, we find ourselves in the uneasy world of godlessness. Nerves are frayed. People are angry. Divisions are widening. The world needs the Lord.
“You are the salt of the earth (Matthew 5:13).” The description of the kingdom in the preceding beatitudes doesn’t appear very impressive (Matthew 5:3-12). Yet, it is to the poor-in-spirit that Jesus made this statement. Disciples feel weak. We aren’t. We are part of an indestructible kingdom, not because of our strength but because of His. Through us, He can stop the cultural decay if we will deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow Him.