2016-08-18 - The Sound of Silence
Luke 19:39 Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Him, “Teacher, rebuke Your disciples.” 40 But Jesus answered, “I tell you, if these become silent, the stones will cry out!”
I'm one of those people who must digest the lyrics of a song. Every now and then a piece of music from the past crosses my path again and grabs my attention. The Simon and Garfunkel classic The Sounds of Silence is the most recent set of lyrics to do so.
People talking without speaking.
Empty words and promises from the various corners of the culture from politics to interest groups spew words forth. Sit down and think about what was presented and you may find precious little of value, or that is feasible. Here the opposite is true. The Pharisees hear the words from the people who recognize Messiah has come, and because it doesn't fit their agenda they miss God's promise to Israel.
Silence like a cancer grows.
The silence that concerns me is from the church. The culture that America was founded on is being modified to be more and more resistant to religious practice and speech. The world wants their ears tickled (2 Timothy 4:3) with the words of modern day prophets that feed them the lie that the gospel is no longer relevant, that God is dead, that you should do what feels good. And because there it is easy and there is little resistance the corrupted message continues to go out. It is no different than the lies sold to Adam and Eve in the garden.
And the people bowed and prayed to the neon god they made.
The culture is being remade around us. What was not acceptable only twenty years ago is now normalized. What has been God's word for two thousand years and more, unless we are very careful, will be hate speech. If we do not speak up the legal right to practice religion including Christianity will be restricted to our churches and meeting halls.
2 Timothy 4:3-5 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, 4 and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths. 5 But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.
2 Chronicles 7:14 - The church must pray for forgiveness and turn back to God. The clean up must start in the house of God. If we are willing to serve as His children and ambassadors again He has promised to heal our land (where ever you might live). Around the world Christians are dying for their faith refusing to deny Christ. The world will not change without a light to guide them. Jesus said that we are the light of the world. This why we must take the first steps. We must show them there is an alternative to the hollow promises the world offers.
Lord Jesus - We have the good news that the world needs. Many are looking for something that fills the empty space in their hearts and lives. Father, forgive us. Call each of us back to You. Call them with Your irresistible message of hope as we light the path to You. Amen.
Grace & Peace,
All verses are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) unless otherwise noted.