A quick survey of the societal landscape provides mounting evidence that we are living in a post-Christian culture. Every day a virtual flood of secularism, atheism, humanism, hedonism, and a plethora of other “isms” assault our spiritual immune systems and work to infect us, our families and our churches.
Dr. Pete Sulack says, “Germs don’t make you sick, weakened immune systems make you sick.” The same can be said about culture. Culture cannot infect us if our spiritual immune system is strong. If it is weak, however, there are a vast number of ways we find ourselves in spiritual decline.
In my prayer time, I have been greatly disturbed by the state of the Church and those called Christian. Following a lifestyle recipe surely authored in Hell, many today are increasing their focus on worldly pleasures and entertainment while decreasing their commitment to the things of God. Likewise many are more knowledgeable about the things of this life than they are about the rest of eternity.
We have far more leisure time than our Grandparents, yet spend less time in church and spiritual pursuits. We demand pithy sermons and scheduled moves of God. We want just enough religion to make us feel good, but not so much as to cause us to reflect on our life choices. When there is a battle between secular culture and Biblical values, the former is increasingly on the winning side.
Bible knowledge – even for many Christian leaders – comes in somewhere after team lineups, what is happening on reality television or whatever the Fad Du Jour happens to be. If those things don’t keep our minds occupied enough, we can always reach for our phones, peruse inane social media posts or play a game. As long as it keeps us from contemplating our own morality and eternal destiny, we are good-to-go.
For those of us who make it to church, we are too often babied by a sermon of thirty minutes or less that encourages us to feel better about ourselves – because God loves us. Usually there is little or no discussion on our obligations to God – even though THAT makes up most of the Bible. Sadly, this is the better of the many scenarios. Many pulpits today are boldly pronouncing that God is for things that the Bible clearly says He is NOT. Like the prophets in the days of Jeremiah and Ezekiel, the supposed mouth-pieces of God are preaching what is popular rather than what is proper, what is false rather than what is true. Many even justify such efforts by saying that it brings people into the church. What good is it to get them there, only to lead them to Hell by chasing after a false image of the one true God?
Even if we are blessed enough to find a good Bible teaching church with a leader who fears God, we need to understand that thirty minutes – or even an hour – is not enough to sufficiently build our spiritual defenses for the steady barrage of cultural contaminants we face each week. We need time with God every single day in prayer and Bible study. We also need time with His people who can encourage us and even correct us when needed. Finally just because we are building our immunity doesn’t mean we should play with Ebola. The Bible says we should stay away from every kind of evil. (1 Thessalonians 5:22).
I apologize if I misled you. You really can’t go from Sinner to Saint in 30 minutes. Although God does the work instantly through salvation, it takes a life time to work it all out. (Philippians 2:12)