In the US (and many other countries), we have largely turned away from the God of the Bible and look at the consequences! It has affected education, politics, business, family life and more. Lawlessness is at an all time high and, if that’s not bad enough, we continue to see a rise in terrorism around the world and here at home. But, could we, like a handful of faithful men and women in the first century, turn the world upside down?
Hosea 3 & 4
1 John 4.1-21
Could we turn the world upside down?
What a beautiful picture of God’s mercy with His people and the fact that He will, eventually, redeem the true church and the nation of Israel.
Verse 3.1, “Then the LORD said to me, ‘Go again, love a woman who is loved by a lover and is committing adultery, just like the love of the LORD for the children of Israel, who look to other gods and love the raisin cakes of the pagans.’ ”
But … Our Choices, Like Theirs, Are Not without Consequences
As I’ve said before, it doesn’t mean there are no consequences for sinful behavior.
It’s impossible not to see some of the parallels between America and rebellious Israel. We have largely turned away from the God of the Bible and loved a lover, a god, of our own making—one who allows us to live however we desire. Look at some of the phrases in chapter 4:
“…no truth or mercy or knowledge of God in the land … swearing and lying … killing and stealing and committing adultery, they break all restraint … bloodshed upon bloodshed … you have rejected knowledge … forgotten the law of your God … they set their heart on iniquity.”
No truth or knowledge of God: He has been “kicked out” of our schools, our government and the public arena. And sadly, we’ve thrown common sense out the window, too.
Swearing and lying: In politics (if this political season has taught us anything), in business (whatever it takes to make a buck), and the list goes on.
Killing and stealing: Just turn on the nightly news.
Committing adultery: We excuse and justify it when it’s our life or our side of the political aisle, but broken marriages, serial relationships, abortion, and the lowering of every sexual standard are the result. Even a sitting President can get away with sexual immorality and argue the meaning of the words.
Breaking all restraint: We have demanded and won the freedom to live out almost any lifestyle we choose. But we’re no longer happy to be allowed to live in sexual sin, we demand that everyone else accept, even applaud it. And we’re willing to destroy anyone who disagrees, dares to tell us we’re wrong, or refuses to participate in our choices!
Bloodshed upon bloodshed: Rioting, gang violence, wholesale murder in some of our inner cities.
Rejection of knowledge and the law of your God: Anyone holding to a biblical standard will be mocked, accused of ramming our opinions down their throat, or worse.
Hearts set on iniquity: There are those who live to lie, cheat, and steal.
The prophet also shall stumble with you: Even some churches have removed a biblical standard and a call to holiness, refusing to use the word sin or to say anything that might offend anyone, ordaining gay clergy, and looking the other way concerning abortion, just for starters. And, sadly, far too many religious leaders have fallen personally (4.5)
And look at some of the consequences:
“Therefore the land will mourn … everyone who dwells there will waste away … even the fish of the sea will be taken away … you shall stumble in the day … I also will forget your children … I will change their glory into shame … they shall eat, but not have enough …” (4.3-10).
Look at the condition of our nation as a whole. There is a lack of morality and justice. Our economy continues to falter. Selfishness rules the day and everyone does what seems right and feels good to him.
The Only Answer … Revival
“Afterward the children of Israel shall return and seek the LORD their God and David their king. They shall fear the LORD and His goodness in the latter days” (3.5).
Revival, personally and corporately, is the only answer. So what can we do? Continue reading