Yep, I Did Change
I need to acknowledge something from a former listener. You really should click on the podcast audio and hear me out. But I’ll make this brief here for those of you who don’t want to listen.
A former listener told me last week that I’ve changed and he can no longer listen to me. It took him a day to explain what he meant. In short, he said I don’t fight the way I used to and don’t seem to recognize the country could very well come crashing down if Joe Biden gets elected.
You know, he’s right. I have changed because he is and I was and many of you are wrong.
Four years ago, three men showed up on my front porch to threaten my family because I publicly said I would not support the President in 2016. My kids were harassed in a store and so bullied at school from kids whose parents decided they hate me that we had to move our kids to a new, actually Christian school, as opposed to the supposedly Christian school they were at.
On a regular basis people accused me of supporting Hillary Clinton and that I was complicit in the destruction of the country.
The country is still here, but not because Donald Trump won.
I really was one of those people who believed every election was an existential crisis and we were on the verge of destruction. In 2008, I wrote regularly that if the GOP didn’t stop Obama and his Alinskite ways, the country was finished. In 2010, we needed to get the GOP in Congress or else. In 2012, if Romney didn’t win, we’d have Obamacare forever and socialism would take over. In 2014, by God if we can only get the Senate, we’ll stop everything.
And guess what?
Obamacare is the law of the land. The national debt is $27 trillion. And everyone is still angry and convinced the nation is over.
Y’all, I cannot bring myself to lie to you. I used to really believe the nation would collapse if Obama or Clinton or Biden got elected. But we are still chugging along and both parties are complicit in the problems.
But eternity matters more to me after nearly dying a few years ago. Enrolling in seminary made me realize how I was twisting my faith to comform to my politics and not the other way around.
Here’s the dirty little secret that no one wants to talk about. The country is in decline because it is full of cultural rot and a man who cheated on three wives with porn stars isn’t going to stop that cultural rot anymore than Joe Biden who has been faithfully married to Jill Biden, but supports the leftwing politics you and I abhor.
Netflix would not be releasing a show about twerking 11 year olds if only Democrats watched it. Republicans, Democrats, conservatives, progressives, Christians, and everyone else are contributing to cultural decline. Pornography, deviancy, and drug use are not exclusively the behaviors of people you disagree with, but of some of your friends, neighbors, and fellow churchgoers too.
The good news is I’ve read the back of the Book. It is supposed to be this way and there is nothing you can do to stop it except to be on the winning team. To be on the winning team requires you to do something you very much do not want to do and that is to love your neighbor. I have read the passage and there are no caveats. If your neighbor is a Democrat or gay or Muslim or your childhood tormentor, scripture says you have to love them. It doesn’t say it will be easy.
Washington is not going to save you. Trump is not going to save the country. But Jesus will save you and I am, at this point in my life, way more interested in eternity than the temporary.
That does not mean I think you or I should surrender. That does not mean we should stay home. I’ll vote and I’ll encourage others to vote. But I’m not going to slip into despair and think the world is over if my side loses because Team Jesus does not lose.
So I cannot adopt the ways of the world and I do not think you should either. The anger, protesting, violence, etc. that so many loud voices on the right think will have to come if Trump loses and those who say the left wins because they are nasty — I don’t think you can go in that direction without losing your soul or confirming you never were saved to begin with.
In the Olivet Discourse, which you can find in Luke 21, Jesus says this
“And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves, people fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world. For the powers of the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” Luke 21::25-28 (ESV)
Too many of us have for too long looked down at our phones in spittle fueled rages or listened to guys like me telling you the world would end if the Democrats won. Instead, we need to lift our heads because our redemption is drawing near. We need to commit to truth and righteousness, love our neighbor, and try to save souls.
Eternity is more important than this country.
I increasingly see my role as helping navigate people to truth away from the narratives everyone is pushing. I am a conservative. I am a Christian. I think politics matters. But I think we have reached a very unhealthy state of affairs when we think the nation ends with any election. I thought that for years and we are still here. The nation is still there. Noting is permanent in politics. No nation stands forever. But eternity and truth do matter and stand forever and I’d rather commit to those than shill for a political party that lies as much as the other, but in ways that tickle my ear.
Lift up your heads people. Your redemption draws near and eternity beckons. Love your neighbor and focus on your community more than Washington. You are not going to find salvation there or with any politician.
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