Thursday, December 18, 2008

God has left America

Throughout the Bible, the Lord showed favour on those people and nations who followed His ways and didn’t resort to pagan or ungodly practices, or observed and performed dishonest applications, or accepted decadence and moral erosion. Through His covenants, the people understood what was expected of them, and followed the “rules”; as a result, He blessed them.

In Judges, we learn that Israel demonstrates this point exactly: “…the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord and served the Baals. They forsook the Lord, the God of their fathers, who had brought them out of Egypt. They followed and worshiped various gods of the peoples around them. They provoked the Lord to anger because they forsook him and served Baal.”

What the Israelites had done was to choose occult and pagan practices and idols over God who had not only made His presence known to them, but mainly had selected them solely as His chosen people. For those wanting to return to God’s way, wanting righteousness, they received little to no encouragement or assistance; justice was not forthcoming from the High Priests or other “legal” entities, as they too were part of the problem, just as much as many of today’s courts, attorneys, and law enforcement are in America. Israel taught the world a lesson; apparently, America is one of the last to learn the consequences of turning from the Lord.

America is a nation that has fallen from God’s sanction and is now in a spiraling collapse, illustrating, unfortunately, that unless we change, we will follow the pattern of the fall of Israel, and every nation like Rome that has gone out of existence. Although the United Kingdom appears to be the exception to this, at least for now, most nations do not survive significantly beyond 200 years. We are in that death roll. Perhaps this is part of God’s punishment on America.

And, unfortunately, God often punishes an entire nation for the crimes of the few. In the scripture is stated: “The people of Israel were exiled to Babylon because they were unfaithful to the Lord”:

Although not every person in Judah was unfaithful, the entire nation was carried away into captivity. Everyone was affected by the sin of a few. Even if we don’t participate in a widespread wrongdoing, we will still be affected by those who do. It is not enough to say, “I didn’t do it.” We must speak out against the sins of the society.”

Are all the people in the United States being punished—or perhaps facing even greater punishment in the future—for the sins of a few? Is each of us doing our duty to speak out against the wrongdoing? Certain television and radio hosts—as the author of this paper—and print journalists, even e-mailers, are trying to wake up America. But do we see massive crowds or long cues at the White House protesting what the leaders and corporate CEOs and the media are doing? No. Instead we see the average American coming home from work, gobbling down dinner, and then stretching out on the recliner to watch mindless television programs, nary a care about what’s going down in our country or the elimination of our individual rights and liberties.

Our once great, prosperous country--which presumably began as a Christian nation—has had corruption and “bad guys” since our birth and all throughout our history, but the thrust of our citizens, the beat of our hearts, the ideologies of our majority were ones of morality, humaneness, goodwill, and spirituality. Honest people sat on judges’ benches, parents raised their children to have values and be upright, life (especially that of an innocent fetus) was cherished, respected and celebrated.

Most of all, God’s intent was followed. We were a consecrated nation, one that everyone wanted to emigrate to, one of having abundance, personal wealth and a powerful and mighty industrial and military foundation, and one filled with caring individuals, even for the unseen faces of strangers. Much of that has gone, and much of our values today have come into parity with serving Baal and Ashtoreth while corruption at high levels reigns. Those who caused the corruption brazenly not only deny their wrongdoing but add insult to injury by demanding more money and bonuses from the very Americans who struggle to get us out of their mess.

Kerby Anderson of Probe Ministry offers a great scenario of America today by illustrating that the demise of nations “ultimately came because of moral and spiritual weakness which manifested itself as military weakness.” [Note: Italicized emphasis added by the author of this paper.]
These stages of decline parallel the junctures in time through which the nation of Israel passed….The first stage is when people turn from God to idolatry…In our day, it takes the form of the worship of money or the worship of self…. The second stage is when men and women exchange their natural use of sex for unnatural uses….The third stage is anarchy. Once a society has rejected God's revelation, it is on its own….At this point God has given the sinners over to a depraved mind and so they do things which are not proper. This results in a society which is without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, and unmerciful. The final stage is judgment. God's judgment rightly falls upon those who practice idolatry and immorality.
The institutions of the family and marriage, and that of education have all declined in our country, as have our moral and monetary values. Primarily, all of this is due to spiritual decline.

Rehashing the details and all the causes—which are many, from media to money—that brought us now to the edge of the precipice where we wobble, does little good. We all know deep down inside each of us what has really happened. Quite simply, we have forsaken God, and He has left us, much like he had abandoned Israel in her repeated sinful behavior.

More insight in Judges into repeated sin and repentance:

“…Israel’s history begins with the nation serving God. Then they take certain steps downward. They did evil in the sight of the Lord and served Baalim (see Jud. 2:11). They forsook the Lord, and they served Baal and Ashtaroth. The anger of the Lord was hot against Israel, and He delivered them into the hands of their enemies. Israel entered a time of servitude. Soon Israel cried out to God in their sad plight and distress. They turned to God and repented. God heard their prayers and raised up judges through whom they were delivered. Then again the nation served God. Soon the same old story repeated itself. The children of Israel did evil, forsook God, followed their own pleasure, were sold into slavery, entered a period of servitude, cried out to God in their distress, turned to Him, judges were raised up, and Israel was delivered. The nation began serving God again, and they were once again at the top of the cycle….The Book of Isaiah…outlines three steps that cause the downfall of nations: (1) spiritual apostasy; (2) moral awfulness; and (3) political anarchy, which is the final stage of any nation. These steps have destroyed nations down through history.

Based on Isaiah’s premise, we have been experiencing spiritual apostasy for several years now. His “moral awfulness” is aplenty today in the land of plenty. The seven sins (lust, gluttony, greed, envy, sloth, pride, wrath) run rampant in our country. Political anarchy is in the making. Writers and others so much believe that anarchy will happen over our leaders having lied to us Americans, stolen our money, deceived us into going to war, and collapsed our economy, our military, and our educational system, that allegedly Martial Law is ready to be implemented, with 20,000 U.S. troops being unleashed on its own citizens.

So what can we do?

Live life fully but sensibly and spiritually. Speak out, protest against those who commit wrong and by their actions are exiling us from the Lord. We need to call on Him for answers and salvation, and bring Him back into our daily lives, regardless of those who are anti-religiosity. If they do not want God in their lives, we should respect that, but in turn they should respect those who do, and not dictate their anti-God values into every aspect of our lives. Statistics indicate that our country is 85% Christian…where then is majority rule? They’ve taken God out of everything this country was founded on. We need to bring Him back, not only on a national level, but also on an individual basis as well.

“The people of Israel knew they had sinned, and they wept loudly, responding with deep sorrow.” The solution of course is repentance. “Repentance means not only confessing sins and asking God to forgive us, but also abandoning our sinful ways. But we cannot do this sincerely unless we re truly sorry for our sinful actions….When we are aware that we have done wrong, we should admit it plainly to God rather than to cover it up or hope we can get away with it.” Covering it up would include denying our sins, minimizing and marginalizing them, making excuses for them, blaming others, and thinking, “I’ll do better in the future,” but yet not repenting or changing…or even merely improving.

Extracts of article written by Gianni DeVincent Hayes, Ph.D

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