Published November 4, 2014
Does the world seem to you to be getting darker every day?
Of course, the return to Standard Time last weekend does seem to make the whole world a little darker. It now gets dark an hour earlier than it did just last week.1 (Unfortunately, there go our long after-work exercise walks until spring.)
But perhaps this physical manifestation of increasing darkness is but a metaphor for the increasing spiritual darkness in our world. It's everywhere.
Just look at a few recent headlines:
- Americans spent an estimated $7.4 billion on Halloween this year, including $350 million for pet costumes. $7.4 billion celebrating the occult, death and other symbols of darkness! Couldn't that $7.4 billion have been put to better use? And what does this say about our society at large?
- An Obama administration official last week cursed the prime minister of Israel, using a crude word describing poultry excrement. (This is serious business. God said of the people who would become Israel, "I will bless those who bless you and I will curse him who curses you." Gen. 12:3.)
- The National Secular Society has provided certificates to an estimated 100,000 people to certify their renunciation of the Christian faith. These people reject Christian doctrine "and all other such superstitions." Darkness has blinded these eyes. "The fool says in his heart, There is no God'" (Psalm 14:1) and "the fool walks in the darkness" (Ecc. 2:14).
- The CEO of Apple, Tim Cook, last week declared, "I'm proud to be gay." What's more, in a Business Week essay, he counted that "among the greatest gifts God has given me." (That's not the God I know; that's not the God Who reveals Himself in the Bible. There's not one verse in the Bible that affirms homosexuality, despite convoluted and desperate liberal attempts to "read it into" Scripture.)
- The anti-God nonsense of the mayor of Houston, Texas, has been widely reported. And even thought she's withdrawn her clearly unconstitutional subpoenas of area clergymen to submit their sermons, the issue has shed much light on the radical LGBT campaign to legitimize and normalize sodomy.
- Dr. James Dobson, the well-known Christian leader, says America is heading toward "depravity," such as was seen in Sodom and Gomorrah."2 Rev. Billy Graham believes we're already there: "America is just as wicked as Sodom and Gomorrah ever were, and as deserving of the judgment of God."3
We can look at all of these things and the many other examples you can find in the newspaper every day and say, "Well, it's clearly a sign of the end" and do nothing else. Or we can take it as a call to action. Christ called His followers to be "salt" and "light" in this dark world (Matthew 5:13-16). That's a call to action to season, to impact the society around us with the Gospel. It's a call graciously to shine our light the light of the Gospel into the dark recesses of society. And it's a call to stand up for Biblical truths, when prevalent societal lies increasingly assault our faith.
As Christ told Paul, who later quoted Him to King Agrippa, "I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me" (Acts 26:17-19). That is a beautifully concise statement of both the "what" and the "why."
We are all, as Christians, commissioned in this way. As the world grows darker, the true Light is needed more than ever. And, as in a dark room, even a small light shines brightly.
Let your light shine for the Lord. Those all around you your neighbors, your co-workers, your friends, your family desperately need it.
1. Yes, the daylight hours are about the same as last week it gets light earlier in the morning now. But the length of daylight hours continues to diminish until December 21st or thereabouts.
2. Dr. James Dobson's October 2014 newsletter.
3. Rev. Billy Graham, Sept. 30 column for Decision magazine.
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