Growing up in the sixties was an exciting time. I saw revolutionary changes taking place that made me wonder if these changes would really matter much in our everyday lives. I saw prayer taken out of schools. Then the pledge of allegiance to our country, the flag and one nation under God were removed and the birth of the feminist movement began along with the right to abort unborn children.
Not much later, homosexuality “came out of the closet.” Politicians shrugged their shoulders. The Church turned its head. Even the Pope, the supposed head of the Catholic Church, was silent.
Those days are now decades behind us, and as I relish on the past, I can’t help but ask if perhaps the Church could have done more. Is the Church to blame? One thing is certain. We can’t fix this broken world because evil is gaining strength every day. The demonic presence of our time is gaining influence wherever it raises its ugly head. And unfortunately, the Church can’t stop it.
But what if it could? What if Americans had put our feet down and said, “We will absolutely not take prayer out of schools. And we will absolutely not allow children to be slaughtered in the womb. And we will forbid the kind of sexual lifestyle that allows men to go into women’s restrooms.”
Would it have made a difference? Probably not.
Let’s gaze into God’s Word and see what He says about the problem:
“For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.
Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.
For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.
And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Though they know Gods righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.” (Romans 1:21-31)
“But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth.” (2 Timothy 3:1-7)
When these verses were written, the Church was barely weened. Paul was an expert at seeing the future because of his encounter with Christ, the Master of the entire universe and everything in it (that has ever or will ever happen). Jesus knew the future of the Church and what would happen in the last days.
So when Paul wrote these prophetic statements, he knew what he was talking about. You might say that he hit the nail right on the head. I could quote dozens of passages from the New and Old Testaments about the end-times and the kind of behavior that is taking place in our world as we speak. (Or read.)
Here’s the point. The Bible makes it clear that these events and lifestyle patterns would happen long before they actually did. That’s what prophecy is all about. So it matters not if the Church were here or not, if it could or could not have influenced modern Man’s behavior. So let’s not blame the Church. It’s mankind’s last shot at breaking away from the sinful nature with which we were are all born.
Praise God for His awesome glory and power, and for letting us see what our future really looks like through His Word.