The Church, the old ship of Zion, in the USA is sailing on stormy seas and caught up in a storm of moral confusion. Christians on the left and right are casting stones at each other. Christians on the left and right are blinded by the great logs of political pragmatism. Both sides see themselves as speaking prophetically – speaking truth to the corrupt powers. But, it seems to me, these bold false prophets are speaking with fiery tongues – the very world of iniquity (James 3:5).
With the credible accusations of sexual misconduct by Judge Roy Moore, some Christians on the right have circled the wagons in continuing support of his candidacy for the US Senate. They point out the sexual misdeeds of Bill Clinton and others. Christians on the right have decided that it’s better to have a sexually corrupt Republican in office that a sexually corrupt Democrat. They refuse to hear the criticisms coming from those who are pro-abortion and pro-homosexual marriage. I guess they’ve decided the sins of the left are greater than the sins of the right.
I can imagine Jesus in the midst of Republicans and Democrats (the modern Pharisees and Sadducces) responding to their politically charged questions. Each side is self-righteous, justifying their own sins, while condemning their opponent’s transgressions and promoting their politically informed theological agenda. Each side is seeking to claim Jesus’ authority and affirmation. But Jesus will have none of that. He remains faithful to the mission of the Father. So, the Pharisees and Sadducees (Republicans and Democrats) collude to rid themselves of this meddlesome prophet.
The Christian church is declining in influence in the USA. Some blame the right, others blame the left. In my judgment, both left and right are inadvertently colluding to diminish the moral influence of the Church of Jesus Christ. In my judgment, those who affirm homosexual marriage and those who support a candidate for US Senate (or POTUS) who is guilty of sexual misconduct are equally corrupt. We need to be reminded that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). This is not a justification for sin, it’s a judgment against sin – the wages of sin is death! (Romans 6:23).
Sin must not be affirmed or self-justified. Self-justification is self-righteousness. The only remedy for sin is confrontation, conviction, confession, and forgiveness. Sin cannot be remedied by political conquest. Sin is atoned for in the cross of Jesus. There at the cross we are confronted and convicted of our collusion in rebelling against God’s righteous Kingdom. The cross compels us to cry out, “God, have mercy on me a sinner.” From the cross, Jesus cries out, “Father, forgive them.”
Christians on the left and right should repent of seeking redemption at the voting booth. We should come together, kneel at the altar of the cross and with one voice cry out, “God, have mercy on us, all sinners.” Only then can we reclaim our moral voice to speak truth to the nations of the world. Only then will be have the necessary wisdom to discern proper discipline and grace for the sins of others.
Jesus warned, “Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great was its fall” (Matthew 7:26-27). I believe the winds that are battering the Church are the batterings of the Holy Spirit seeking to remove corruption from the house of God. When the idolatrous political temples of the right and left collapse under the force of the storm, then the Spirit will establish the authority of the Church on the words of Jesus. And that structure will prevail against all hostile winds of human corruption.