“If you were arrested and charged with being a Christian…”
“If you were arrested and charged with being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?”
That question comes as merely hypothetical to those of us living in the United States (or is it?) but is a chargeable offense in many parts of the world.
The demonic, psychotic and horribly murderous excesses of the catholic church before, during and after the Inquisition resulted in the deaths of millions of martyrs throughout the world, yet even now as that dragon lay sleeping, these horrors and more are being visited upon members of the Body of Christ on a daily basis in many countries around the world.
In a previous article, (here) I highlighted some of these abuses and listed every country I could find that had a current history of persecution of Christians.
In this essay I propose that most Christians in the United States are such in name only and would be very willing to plead not guilty and go to a jury trial if ever arrested for their faith.
I understand that this seems to be a radical position to take, after all the jingoists say that America is a Christian nation, and that we all believe in God, and that we would never put up with being singled out for our faith.
Au contraire. The USA is nominally Christian, at best. (We do not consider Mormons, Catholics or Jehovah’s Witnesses to be ‘Christian’ in the strictest sense of the word, as defined by the New Testament). Recent polls indicate that Americans by and large are losing their faith in the One True Creator of the Universe and believe in an amorphous ‘new-age spirituality‘ (2 Peter 2:1 …there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction) which they get from their televisions and check-out lane magazines.
The Bible may be the best selling book of all time, but these days it seems as though it is being read less and used as a paper weight more. Even the Gideons have been displaced by television guides in most hotel/motel chains.
Where are we headed if we continue down this road of abandoning our faith? The ‘seeker’-centered mega-churches are filled to the brim but it seems that these blow-dried preachers want you to have less of an interest in your soul than in your wallet. How many people will abandon their faith for the sweet nothings being screamed at them from the podiums? Our Lord had some choice words for these new-age charlatans, and the people that ‘seek’ them out; (2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears)
The ‘seeker’ auditoriums filled with sycophantic hangers-on are in no way under the threat of immediate reprisal. They have nothing to worry about since they have heaped up for themselves treasures upon the earth, and have precious little interest in their immortal souls (Matthew 6:21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.) As long as they profess no real faith and allow the persecution of their neighbors, they will keep their job, house, car, vacations, plastic surgeon and doggy-day-care for a little while, temporarily immune to the threat of anything of true value being taken from them. If and when they too are among the hordes of displaced and hungry people, they will blame God rather than praise him. They cannot see or hear the truth because they will not. (Jeremiah 5:21 Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not.)
It is the small home church, the Sabbatarian, the true Christian (earnestly seeking not some doctrine of prosperity but the doctrine of faith that the L-rd promises us as reward for diligence in these times) who will be the initial victim of this black hate visited upon us by the fallen one and his minions. It seems a catch-22 then, doesn’t it? What does one do then? The answer is to get as close to Yahweh as you can. He never promised us an easy go of it, (Acts 14:22 “We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God”) but He did promise us his guiding hand in the midst of persecution, (1 Peter 4:14 If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.) For the persecution will come and when it does it will be a rolling tide that will sweep all in its path into the abyss of suffering that so many of our forebears in the faith endured, (2Tim.3:12 – Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.) Wherein, having done all, they stood (Ephesians 6:13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand) with their eyes turned toward heaven, forgiving their oppressors, and commending their souls to the Eternal, the Ancient of Days Whose true Judgement shall soon come down like a hammer upon the minions of the fallen one and all that he has wrought upon this earth. Oh happy day when we see the L-rd galloping from the sky on a white horse in a cloud of His angels and they defeat the evil that has overtaken mankind, hardening our hearts and darkening our thoughts.
It will get a lot worse for the true believer before this, so read your Bible, spend time with your family, and diligently seek out He Who with His stripes and Blood purchased your soul. Accept His offer of Salvation and you shall have nothing to fear.
c2012 James S. Berge
30 November, 2012
Matthew 7.16-20: “By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.”