Summary: Does God Judge a Nation? What role does the church play in our culture? What Does God's Word say about Last Days?
The Man of Lawlessness
“Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers and sisters, 2 not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by the teaching allegedly from us—whether by a prophecy or by word of mouth or by letter—asserting that the day of the Lord has already come. 3 Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness[a] is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. 4 He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.
5 Don’t you remember that when I was with you I used to tell you these things? 6 And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time. 7 For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. 8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming. 9 The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.
In 1963, Madalyn Murray O'Hair won a lawsuit against the Baltimore School System, which voted in her favor 8-1 to ban school prayer and label it "unconstitutional". Though not all prayer was immediately banned from schools at that time, through a process of time, almost all school prayer is banned today.
Listen to some of the results of our Nations decision to take God out of our school day….
A. Young People
1. For 15 years before 1963 pregnancies in girls ages 15 through 19 years had been no more than 15 per thousand After 1963 pregnancies increased 187% in the next 15 years.
2. For younger girls, ages 10 to 14 years, pregnancies since 1963 are up 553%.
3. Before 1963 sexually transmitted diseases among students were 400 per 100,000. Since 1963, they were up 226% in the next 12 years.
B. The Family
1. Before 1963 divorce rates had been declining for 15 years. After 1963 divorces increased 300% each year for the next 15 years.
2. Since 1963 unmarried people living together is up 353%
3. Since 1963 single parent families are up 140%.
4. Since 1963 single parent families with children are up 160%.
1. The educational standard of measure has been the SAT scores. SAT scores had been steady for many years before 1963. From 1963 they rapidly declined for 18 consecutive years, even though the same test has been used since 1941.
2. Of the nation's top academic scholars, three times as many come from private religious schools, which operate on one-third the funds as do the public schools.
D. The Nation
1. Since 1963 violent crime has increased 544%.
3. Illegal drugs have become an enormous & uncontrollable problem.
2. The nation has been deprived of an estimated 50 million citizens through legal abortions just since 1973.
The numbers don’t really tell the story, they are just the sad results of the spiritual health of our Nation. America has never been problem free or sin free, but as a whole, from the beginning, our Fore Fathers recognized Almighty God as the source of strength and truth as the bedrock of our Nation. Every President that I can remember gave God credit, and asked for His Blessing upon our Nation, until our current president who seems determined to wipe God’s name from all government events and activity.
Our question for the past few weeks has been “Where are you God when all of these things are happening?” Each week we have come to the conclusion God is with us, even when He seems quiet.
When we look back over the last 60 years of our Nations history and see the dramatic changes that have happened, maybe the more appropriate question is “Where are you CHURCH?” How could we allow these huge shifts occur in our culture when we profess to be 80% Christian in every survey?
In my opinion, too many Churches, denominations have been focused winning the numbers game, making a name for themselves, instead of taking on the spiritual issues of the day. It’s been much easier to focus on church growth and trying to draw a crowd than to speak out against immorality and the slippery slope of sin. Too many of our churches have made a Theological shift….leaning hard to the left, moving away from the belief that God’s Word is the Inspired Word of God, instead it’s something less. Many churches have decided that the churches role is Social gospel, where just carrying out good works is the main reason for the church….but you don’t hear a call to repentence in many of these churches, you don’t hear the idea of sin and a person being born in total depravity being preached…. The reason…..these topics don’t tickle the ears of those listening….they might make someone uncomfortable.