Of course, only God knows. The Creator, the Sustainer, the Lord our Governor, He knows what remains, how many sands are still up in the hourglass of our story. And if we have learned anything at all it is that nations rise and fall, civilizations are born, grow into maturity, wain, and die. It is not for us to know precisely where we are. It is for us to be faithful, true, and bold. It is for us to laugh at evil, smile at our loved ones, and share whatever we have been given with those less fortunate.
But even though we cannot know for sure what is left, where we are in the story, it is not an arrogant or blasphemous design to attempt to read the stars, the weather patterns of our culture. We are ants at the base of Everest, and we must remember that, but we are ants made in the image of the Living God, filled with the Spirit of the Risen King. This wasn’t our idea — it was His. He made us, not we ourselves. We are His sheep, and if He wants His sheep to mimic Him, that’s His business.
So where are we? America, my country, what is left of thee?
First, there is the growing sentiment among many that we are on board a sinking Titanic. And there are many signs that this is a fair assessment. The utter inanity of our ruling elites is mind boggling. Every day they say and do things that make it harder and harder to be a comedian or satirist. Perhaps this is our greatest objection to their tyrannies. They are stealing our jokes, our laughter, our joy. They have done this by running their relativistic pile-driver like a broadsword through the chest of the American soul. Everything is a sexual innuendo, every scene ends in a bedroom with heavy breathing. Male and female are just social constructs. Marriage is just an old fashioned custom that can be re-imagined, re-invented, or discarded, if you like. Their mouths are full of cursing and lies. They stand behind microphones with their ties and dress suits, and they spew arrogance and emptiness like chubby, furry animals with kazoos stuck in their throats. They say they will draft our daughters to fight in our wars. They say that little babies may be chopped up and vacuumed out of their mothers’ wombs. They say grown men may shower in the girls’ locker rooms because there’s something wrong with them, something is wrong inside of them, so let them.
It’s quite possible that when you get to this point in the story, you conclude that it’s too late. The kool-aid has been drunk, the cyanide is kicking in and we’re seizuring right on schedule; the ship is going down. This is a Babel moment. Our words have been confused. Next comes the scattering.
But there’s another possibility, and it’s the one I’m inclined to. And that possibility is that we’ve reached that point in the story where the bad guys have got drunk on what they believe is the inevitability of their success. This is the point where Nebuchadnezzar boasts in his power and pride and goes full ape in the Babylonian woods. This is the point where Herod receives the praises of the people as a god before being eaten by worms. This is the point where Vizzini puts his head back and laughs his last Sicilian laugh. Do you know what I mean? Most of the great stories have that part. It’s the part when the villains believe they have triumphed, and in their teeming confidence they show all of their cards. The White Witch and her demon horde shriek and cackle. They smile their big, toothy grins, they laugh and chortle and dance in the moonlight, and the fully ugliness of their agenda is revealed for the rotting, wrinkled corpse that it is.
This is where I believe we are.
I do believe there is a train heading for a cliff at breakneck speeds, and the bridge is out. Actually there never was a bridge there. The train jumped the tracks a while back. And there is only a wide, gaping canyon waiting to receive the wreckage. But I also believe that more and more people are jumping off that train. We have seen the Planned Parenthood videos. We have seen the ghouls discussing the dissection of little babies and the Lamborghinis they will buy off the sale of their tiny livers. We have heard them say with a straight face that they will draft our daughters to go to war. We have heard them say that they care about race relations while they continue to crush many minority neighborhoods with their jackboot socialism. We have heard them say that Islam is a religion of peace, and more and more of us are laughing at them every time they say it. They keep saying that you can be whatever you want to be, like fussy schoolmarms with too much makeup and too much perfume. (What are they hiding under all of that?) Boys can be girls and girls can be boys, and nothing is absolute, nothing is sacred except for whatever sacred cow they haul out of the fire today. But it’s getting pretty old. It’s getting tiresome, their games, their shrill PC hypocrisy. They keep saying that our guns are the problem, and they want us to just give them to them. To them. To. Them. While they stand there in their suits and ties, spewing lies, driving their train to the tune of trillions of dollars off this reservation.
Good riddance. We’re getting off that train.
While Donald Trump is an annoying, spoiled, junior high circus clown, he also isn’t part of that elite herd of political chimpanzees. While I can’t bring myself to something resembling an endorsement, I do believe there’s a common sense rebellion afoot as represented by the Trump phenomenon, as represented by the Brexit vote in the UK. It’s confused and schizophrenic and irrational in many ways, but it’s pretty sick of the Ahabs and Jezebels running this joint. I’m not sure how godly a man Jehu was, but Elijah anointed him, and he was the violent wrecking ball God used to level the house of Omri. Something like that may be at work now.
Regardless, we need to keep getting off that train. Jump now. Get out. Get off the bus. This means that we need to welcome and love children like the treasures they are. The single most valuable created asset in the whole universe is people because people are made in the image of God. They carry within themselves the potential of God’s very own creativity, productivity, love, and goodness. Sin has sucked this power from our souls, but Jesus crushed sin on the cross and now Easter is on the rise. So welcome people. Welcome them into your family, welcome them into your home. Welcome them to your table. Love them. Don’t love them with a smarmy blandness. Love them with Christian love. Love them like God loved us in His Son. Love them fiercely. Love them truthfully. Love them with forgiveness piled up high. And then because you love them, teach them, disciple them, sharpen them, and let them sharpen you. Teach them to think hard. Teach them to sing the Psalms. Teach them to forgive. Teach them that in Jesus is everything they will ever possibly need.
And because you are committed to this task, you will not send your children to schools that cannot or will not state clearly what the difference is between a boy and a girl. Let this be your simple litmus test. If all of the teachers and administrators will not state clearly for the record that they can tell the difference between a boy and a girl, they are not qualified to teach your children anything. Get out, and don’t let them near the steering wheel while your children are in the car. There were likely many nice, Christian teachers and administrators in the Nazi school system, but that system was designed to train up little Nazis. The American public school system is a thorough catechetical program designed to train up little mindless drones. Of the sort I meet on the college campus all the time.
The thing is we don’t know exactly what is left of America at this point. It may be that the screaming chimps who are shoveling all the coal into the engine of the train will take America off the cliff with them. That’s God’s business, and if so, let them have it. But I believe that in God’s goodness He has poured particular gifts and glories into every nation on the face of the earth. This is why the nations are bringing their glory and honor into the New Jerusalem at the end of Revelation. I believe that America is one of those nations. Various American institutions and structures may carry on for many more years or not, but we have a choice to go along with the insanity or not.
It’s Independence Day, a good day to ask God whether you’ve been going along with any of the insanity. Don’t set your foot on a secular school campus, university campus, courthouse, legislative house, voting booth, shopping mall, movie theater, sports stadium, or any other public place without declaring war on all unbelief first. We don’t go there to be educated. We don’t go there to have a round table discussion. We don’t go there to be passively entertained. We aren’t on their train. If we go there, we go there as spies, we go there as rebels, we go there to take notes on the weaknesses in their defenses. We go there to take every thought captive to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
But mostly, we are answering the question we originally asked each and every day for ourselves. Our country, America, what is left of it? We answer this question by whether we get up and work hard with our hands, or whether we whine and complain about wages and envy our brothers. We answer this question by whether we love our wife and children, by how we care for the poor and hurting in our midst and around us. We answer this question by the faces around our dinner table, by the fact that we have a dinner table that we eat at together. We answer this question by whether we give thanks to God for the goodness He bestows each day. We answer this question by going to church every Sunday, and making sure that we go to a church that preaches the Bible and isn’t embarrassed by any of it. We answer this question by the compassion we show to our enemies, and by the willingness we have to stand up to them and tell them they are wrong. We answer this question by whether we will continue to go along with their charades, by whether we give up and throw the towel in because it’s just so hard and tiring. We are answering the question now. We are answering the question by what we look to for our source of strength and joy.
The first apostles had far less to go on than we do. But they knew that the resurrection of Jesus changed everything. And so it has.
So Happy 4th of July.