Christians must be prepared to respond to attacks from non-believers, attacks that have been explained by the Word of God.
“We’re at this crossroads clash that you and I know well, and your listeners who are Biblically astute realize, Jesus said in the last days it’s going to be like the days of Sodom and Gomorrah and before He returns it’s going to get unhinged like this,” Jack Hibbs told American Family Radio on Wednesday.
McFarland: Country 'unraveling' because it divorced the Creator
Steve Jordahl, AFN.net
After an alarming Wall Street Journal poll suggested important and foundational values are receding in importance, a Christian apologist says no one should be surprised Americans are running after wealth and new gods, and leaving behind their Creator.
“The things that will elevate any nation, and the things that were priorities for two centuries, those things have been jettisoned,” Alex McFarland, reacting to the troublesome poll, tells AFN.
In the poll, only 38% of respondents say patriotism is important to them. In 1998, 70% thought that.
Also in the poll, only 39% of Americans say religion is important compared to 62% in 1998.
What appears to be a rejection of religion may be a bit misleading, McFarland suggests, because mankind throughout history has believed in some higher calling in life than himself.
“We actually are more religious than ever,” he explains, “but the religions that have emerged, like the cult of environmentalism, the jihadists of the LGBTQ-trans movement, and then, of course, the religion of racism.”
Among the poll numbers that went up, one value that increased was chasing money. In the poll, 43% called money “very important” which is a jump from 31% back in 1998.
It’s no surprise McFarland turns to the Bible on that topic, too, since the Bible says plenty about wealth.
“That's why the country looks the way it looks,” the Christian apologist warns. “It's depressed. It's dangerous. It's unraveling. Because rather than the Messiah, we have gravitated toward the mammon.”
Hibbs is the founding pastor at Calvary Chapel Chino Hills southeast of Los Angeles. He shared his views with AFR radio host Jenna Ellis.
Congregations have many needs, but in this day education should be a pastor’s top priority, Hibbs said. The flock must be confident in what it believes and know that their ultimate defense is truth.
“The No. 1 thing is that the Christian pastor must arise to educate his congregation that sin is really sin, that God’s word is absolutely true, which means this by the way," the pastor told the AFR audience. "When the book of Romans tells us that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God that shouldn’t offend us, but it should actually prepare us to receive the good news that Christ will forgive anybody who turns to him.”
Pastors need to preach that sin is real
Convincing people that sin is real is a challenge. Hibbs said some pastors have softened their message in search of acceptance or protecting church attendance numbers.
Often today we see a sexual component to attacks on Christians.
“Instead of pandering or instead of covering up or avoiding the issues in so many pulpits today in the attempt to what, be acceptable, be cool, to get numbers? I don’t know what, but we need to speak truth, speak it in love, and the Christian pastor action today as it always has been should be to reach out to these people that are gender-confused and being sold a bill of goods in public schools and speak the truth,” Hibbs said.
Opponents of God’s Word show great depth of passion for their beliefs. Some pastors need to recapture theirs, Hibbs said.
“They really believe in what they are feeling, and pastors today, they need to believe what the Word of God says as much as the Trans team believes what they think," he urged. "They tell us we cannot say these things. They tell us, ‘You can’t criticize us, you can’t question us.’ Yeah we can, yes we must.”
Success in the Culture Wars will depend on Christians becoming bold in conversations, not just listening without responding.
“No. 1, stop falling for them shaping the conversation and dialogue with them. Now that’s tough,” Hibbs said. “They start yelling back. They start going incredibly emotionally ballistic, but that yet proves the condition that they’re in. We have to be truthful and winsome and factual because here’s the great thing: actual science agrees with the Word of God, the author is the same author. The same author that wrote the genetic code and the DNA is the same author that wrote Genesis. It’s the same God. Those two truths, those two facts do not contradict. Science tells us how things work, and the Bible tells us why things work, why it matters.”
Christians should be active in communities
The Christian response must be physical in application not only prayerful in consideration.
“Christians, of course we should be praying, but prayer’s not enough,” Hibbs said. “After you get done praying you need to with love, with conviction and with persistence, reach out, get involved in your school board, find out what’s going on in the PTA and speak up. Form a coalition. Do what you must to rescue your children. They’re being lied to at an impressionable age. They’re being spoken to by authorities who say, ‘You know what, if you’ve had this thought …’
Hibbs shared a story relayed to him by a parent’s struggle with an elementary school teacher’s response to the topic of same-sex attraction.
“I had a parent tell me that their kid told them, ‘I think I like girls Mommy. I’m a girl, but I think I like girls because the teacher said today if you ever thought about kissing a girl then you most possibly are gay.’ Just that power of suggestion to an 8-year-old. Think of the influence. This is what we’re seeing happen. Parents must get involved in the education system, and we need pastors with some courage right now like never before,” Hibbs said.
Hibbs laid out three points for pastors to consider.
“No. 1, not all pastors should be on social media. If they cannot handle a mean tweet, if it affects them and causes them to shrink back then they need to get off. No. 2, they need to actually take the time to read the Bible personally and believe what it says because it’s the absolute truth. The third thing is they need to get into their pulpits, and they need to meet with their congregations, and they need to engage their civic leaders like pastors did in the Colonial period.”
Finally, pastors need to remind themselves of the power of the truth, Hibbs said.
“We don’t have to defend Biblical truth, we are to proclaim it," Hibbs insisted. "It defends itself, it’s alive. We don’t have to tiptoe to figure out what kind of affect it may have on our congregation or our community.
"If we speak God’s Biblical truth it is going to fly like an eagle with an impact and an affect. If I seek Biblical truth, I don’t have to worry about the outcome," he concluded. "The Holy Spirit is going to see to it that He takes that truth and begins to stir that person. Their minds have been black and darkened and have been brought to a place of resistance, but that’s not for us to determine, it’s for us to obey.”