We see lawlessness, not just in criminals, but government officials not enforcing the law (the Rule of Law).
We see the out-and-out lies of those in political offices describing or justifying their actions.
We see minorities of people forcing their views on all Americans (lack of freedom of expression and
freedom described in the Declaration of Independence: Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness) We see the destruction of Freedom of expression.
We see the destruction of Marriage (adultery, fornication, divorce, marriage of Adam and Steve not
Adam and Eve, etc).
We see the destruction of Family (single parents raising children, many times out of necessity and not
one father and one mother; encouragement of ‘it takes a village’ to raise a child vs the parents; the
pollution of reading, writing and arithmetic in our schools).
We see the destruction of Nationalism in favor of internationalism where some other country sets our
policies and actions as a nation. Also as a Nation not acting for the greater good, allowing evil to flourish.
How and what are we to think? Beside getting upset, despondent, despairing for ourselves, our families and our country?
The answer has always been and will always be the same. Hebrew 4:12a The word of God is alive and power, sharper than any two edged sword, …
It is the Word of God, God’s word and His thinking that enlightens the believer and gives us God’s thinking and therefore not despair but confidence of the future and specifically our future with God. And an understanding of what (evil) is going on around us today.
So let’s look at a great passage of scripture and see what God says about all of this. Let’s read it first and then explore what it says.
2 Cor 4:3 Moreover even since our gospel is veiled, it is veiled [hidden] to those who are perishing [both carnal believers and unbelievers who do not know or recall God’s thinking],
2 Cor 4:4 in whose case the god of this world [Satan] has blinded the minds [thoughts] of the unbelieving [those perishing above], that they might not see the light of [discern] the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the [exact] image of God the Father.
2 Cor 4:5 For we do not preach [witness] ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bond-servants for Jesus’ sake.
2 Cor 4:6 Since God the Holy Spirit said, “Light [God’s words] shall shine out of darkness,” [Genesis 1:3] is the One who has shone in our hearts [our thinking] to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ [what Jesus Christ said, His thinking].
2 Cor 4:7 ¶ On top of this we [believers in Jesus Christ] have this treasure [v6 thinking of God] in earthen vessels [human body], that the surpassing greatness of the power may be of God [God’s power] and not from ourselves;
2 Cor 4:8 we are  afflicted in every way [pressures in daily life], but not crushed;  perplexed [inner pressures], but not despairing;
2 Cor 4:9  persecuted, but not forsaken [we are still God’s own possessions];  struck down, but not destroyed;
2 Cor 4:10 always carrying about in our physical body the death of Jesus [Jesus was not accepted and did not have a big ministry (following)], so that the life of Jesus [humanity, his thinking and attitudes] also may be manifested in our body [our thinking and hence actions toward others].
2 Cor 4:11 For we who live [the spiritual life, the Christian Way of Living] are constantly being delivered over to [situations of] death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus [His thinking and attitudes] also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. [people will observe how we handle situations]
2 Cor 4:12 So then death [the pressures in versus 8&9] works in us, so that life [Christ’s thinking] can work in you [plural –you all meaning others].
So the plain reading of this passage tell us that:
- Since God’s thinking is veiled (hidden) because of the work of Satan and his blinding mankind’sthinking to the truth;
- And since believers are the ones who learn, think and reflect God’s light, His word (thinking);
- Satan and his blinded followers persecute and attempt to destroy God thinking and those whoreflect Gods thinking;
- We and God’s thinking are under attack in 4 different ways (2 Cor 4:8-9). Yet we recall that ourLord, Jesus Christ, while on this earth was subjected to the same (and He was perfect), so we lookto Him and His thinking and actions as our model to withstand these pressures and attacks.
- – First by knowing God’s view of history and where we are and what the outcomes are (explained in a moment) – God wins! Satan loses ;-(.
- – Second by learning, knowing and standing up for the truth (more latter).
- – Third by being ‘lights unto the world’ in a world of darkness. We are God’s witnesses by whatwe know, think, say and do. That is our mission. And we are to do our mission. We let God take care of the rest. We Trust God.
○ We do that by knowing His promises and claiming his promises (called the Faith Rest
procedure – claiming a relevant promise from the word of God and resting that God will fulfill that promise – see relevant sections of The Christian Way of Living – Getting Started).
Therefore by being a ‘light unto the world’, even when things are not going good and the end seems near – recall “carrying about in our physical body the death of Jesus” – did Jesus look like a success on the cross? Didn’t it look to the world and His followers that the end was upon them? Yet what did happen? Jesus Christ did the only thing on the cross that mattered. He saved the world (John 3:16). Out of the jaws of certain defeat comes God’s victory! That is or example. That is our copybook. That is our wagon wheel tracks and railroad tracks to follow. Learning, Thinking and living in what God has given us – His word and His thinking. So that our life light shines in the darkness, whether in adversity or prosperity. That is our mission. And for that mission we will eventually die physically and God gives us a resurrection body and we live with God forever.
So we “carry about in our physical body the death of Jesus” so that the world can see God’s light and can decide to follow God’s light or Satan’s darkness.
And whether the United States of American turns the corner or continues down the path of darkness, in either case, we are to remain God’s lights and we persevere because we have God’s thinking and
can use the resources God has given us (like the Faith Rest procedure), knowing the outcome. God wins! Satan looses!
Therefore we win!
So, “How does a believer in Jesus Christ cope with what is going on in the United States of America today?”
We learn God’s word, think God’s word, and our actions reflect God’s thinking in our lives. And God provides the rest.
“Knowing God’s view of history (explained in a moment)”
In short here is what is left in God’s history of mankind and time:
Today we are in the Church Age:
- at the end of the Church Age is what is called the Exit Resurrection or Rapture of the Church.
- – Then for Church Age believers we have the Bema Seat Judgment, called the Judgment Seat of Christ. After that judgment or evaluation comes a great celebration with Christ.
- – While on earth during this time is the 7 year Tribulation.
- Then at the end of the 7 year Tribulation comes the 2nd return of Christ to the earth and He defeats all thearmies of the world. This is also called the beginning of the 2nd Advent of Christ.
- As part of the 2nd Advent of Christ we have:
- – The removal of Satan and his forces from the earth (thrown into the Abyss for 1000 years)
- – The removal of all unbelievers who are live at the end of the Tribulation (to Tartarus)
- – Bema Seat Judgment or evaluation for Old Testament believers including Tribulational martyrs
- – Then Jesus Christ sets up His administration of His Millennial rule with some of His believers, from theChurch Age, as administers and ‘rulers’ throughout the world. [note – you could be one of these]
- As part of Christ’s 2nd Advent, we then have Millennial Reign of Jesus Christ where it begins with believersalive at the end of the Tribulation repopulating the earth and living under Christ’s rule for 1000 years.
- At the end of the Millennial Reign of Christ, Satan and his followers are released and foment the Gog(Satan) and Magog (his followers) revolution which Jesus Christ quickly puts down.
- Next we have the Great White Throne Judgment where all unbelievers in human history are judged.
- Then the Bema Seat Judgment or evaluation for all millennial believers.
- Then Satan, His followers and all unbelievers in human history are cast into the Lake of Fire forever andever.
- God (The Lord Jesus Christ) then destroys the heavens and the earth and creates a new heavens and anew earth.
- And the elect angels and all believers live with God for eternity.That is the (not so) short sequence of God’s outline for the remaining of human history (there are details within this outline I did not cover and are not germane for the overall outline).
Do we know the outcome. As I said, God wins! Satan and his followers loose! Therefore we can have confidence in God, His word and His plan. Because we win.
- “Standing up for the truth (more latter)”
This is one of several things that is so misunderstood in Christendom today. What are we suppose to do? And that is the wrong question. Rather it is how are we to think.
Sure the bible talks about doing things, but the overwhelming amount of the bible talks about how we are to think. Because in God’s system it is how we think that matters. God evaluates our thinking and our motivations (Hebrews 4:12d). Because God knows, as we know, how you think determines your actions. So thinking is important. Think with proper motivation results in proper actions.
So then what does “Standing up for the truth” mean? First we are to Learn and Think what God’s word says. Then we become, notice become (something we were not before), become light unto the world. By our thinking, motives and actions – in that order.
So standing up is thinking God’s viewpoint and talking to friends and family. Living your life in the light of eternity. That is what God wants. Sure some write books, Pastors teach, others go on interview shows and represent God’s thinking. And that is fine for some. But for all, we are to be lights unto the world. So live your life in God’s thinking, talk to friends and neighbors, speak the truth in public but respect the privacy and decisions of others. God’s word coming out of your mouth and what others observe in your life is what is “alive and powerful, sharper than any two edged sword” means. That is being a witness. That is what is “Standing up for the Truth”.