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“It gets better”?

Having seen a note again on It Gets Better, I can’t help but further lament the current condition today’s society.  The false hope that well intentioned people are giving astounds me.  Surely bullying, threatening, name calling, beating, persecution, and physical and emotional abuse of another, regardless of sex, ‘orientation’ or religion, all fall under God’s just judgment, as does all sinful behavior.

What we fail to realize, however, is that it is just as sinful to tolerate, advocate, and support that which is contrary to God’s Word and will.  Yes, we certainly do want to help and serve others as neighbors to all in need, even the lowliest of the low, the social outcasts, and the sinners all (1 John 4:11-12, Note: John is talking about the love of God through Jesus, not unconditional tolerance and acceptance of that which God calls sin).  Yet love of neighbor does not mean supporting the sinful behavior.  Love of neighbor does not condone the infliction of any kind of pain or duress on any other.  Nor does love of neighbor advocate speaking untruths to secure sinners in their sin.

The latter is exactly what  the advance of It Gets Better does.  It, and the participants, advocate and encourage sin.  In addition, they contribute to the false notion that sin does not have consequences.  Sin does (Romans 6:23).  It leads to death-eternal death.  There is only One who gives true and everlasting hope, now and through eternity—Jesus Christ!

The It Gets Better campaign tries to encourage those who are suffering (as a result of others and their own decisions and behavior) that things will “get better.”  But this is a false hope.  For the sinner who remains in their sin, the end will not be pretty.  Though life in this world may improve a little as a result of advocacy, the acceptance of sin, the cessation of struggle, in the end, it will not.  This is because the world can only offer limited hope and limited help.  Only Jesus gives hope and help which is unlimited and never ending (2 Corinthians 4:18).

God does not promise that things will “get better.”  In fact, just the opposite does He say will be, as exampled also by this campaign, “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron…” (1 Timothy 4:1-2).

This is precisely what we see happening with It Gets Better and campaigns like it. Encouraging sin does not and will not make things better.  Nor can we sinners end all problems of society, no matter how hard we try.  God does command that we love our neighbor and defend him and all in need (also the unborn, the aged, and all who suffer), but we do not do this to improve society, but to care for one another, and because they have need.  Man can help us only a little, and only temporarily.  Only God can give the help, now and eternally, that all sinners need—through Jesus Christ.

Rather than giving a false hope of fleeting improvement which is full of lies and hypocrisy, speak the truth, in love, (according to God’s Word) that one not only be confident of God’s grace in this life, but into eternity.

Dove World Outreach and the Koran

It’s in the news that a group in Florida, Dove World Outreach, (But try to look at their site, http://www.doveworld.org.  When I just tried to access their page, it came up blank) is planning to burn the Koran on Sept 11.  A firestorm is ensuing.  Many are saying that this will create greater problems for our military in Iraq, Afghanistan and various other places.  This is a very real concern, and one that Dove World Outreach should strongly consider, for the sake of those who are serving this country.

In the midst of all this, at least in the media and among various ‘Christian’ groups (http://www.elca.org/Who-We-Are/Our-Three-Expressions/Churchwide-Organization/Communication-Services/News/Releases.aspx?a=4628), a louder call for “tolerance” and “understanding” resounds all the more.  ‘Christians,’ Jews, and Muslims are ‘praying together’ about the conflict.  What’s lacking, however, is the truth of Islam (and the truth of Christianity).  Is Islam a peaceful religion, as so many presume?  Just observe the reaction of Muslims around the world to the planned burning of the Koran.  Reason will tell you if Islam is truly  peaceful or not (See http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/245877/burning-koran-nina-shea for some information about Law in Islamic countries).  One also notes that the Christians (and the Muslims and others) who join together in prayer and worship are truly demonstrating dishonesty with reference to the tenets of their respective faiths.  Of course, this further demonstrates how unchristian many ‘Christians’ and church bodies have become and how deceptive Satan is in destroying true unity among His people, basing that unity on tolerance and diversity rather than on the teachings/doctrine of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The people at Dove World Outreach may have a constitutional right to burn the Koran, but it is not in the best interest of our American neighbors who are on active duty, nor for our country.  Should the Koran be burned, this would demonstrates not only a lovelessness  and disrespect to the people which are Muslims, but also to our own people, and putting them in greater danger.  Respect is to be given to others, to be sure.  But for the Christian, respect does not imply acceptance.

The publicity is getting worldly attention, to be sure.  Rev. Jones believes that God is calling him to burn the Koran.  But what does Scripture say?  Nothing of the sort.  Rev. Jones, like so many who call themselves Christian today (including televangelists, preachers, etc.), claim a calling to do this or to do that, or to say this or to say that.  But they do so without Scriptural support.  They do so without God’s backing.  They truly are acting outside of Christianity without God’s authority, as are others who compromise the faith for acceptance in the world and a place among the nonbelievers.

Sadly, Rev. Jones’ action (even if he doesn’t burn the Koran) only feeds the flames against genuine Christianity (of which Jones is not), extremists as some call them, simply because they hold to the Bible and proclaim Jesus to be the only Savior.  Therefore does genuine (and not false) Christianity also teach that all other religious are rightly false, based on Holy Scripture and not because of ‘the voice of God in my head,’ majority, or any other rule.

This would be a good time for Christians to reflect on what God truly does say about Jesus in the Word and about other ‘religions,’ and to compare the Bible with the Koran, and how the Christian is to live in such a hostile world–by faith, holding to God’s promises and loving ALL people (which also means speaking the truth).

It’s also a time to reflect on the state of Christendom in America and the world.  Few are being true and honest to the Lord Christ, compromising the Lord’s teaching and forsaking His Word.  Repentance is in order.

Greater antagonism against the true Christian faith are we seeing, and greater acceptance of that which is not true.  Lord, have mercy.

Does Being Lutheran Still Matter?

In short, the answer is a resounding YES! Read the PDF to learn more. Confessional Lutheranism DOES mean something–more than something–confessional Lutherans confess Christ in their teaching (doctrine) and by their practice.

DoesBeingLutheranStillMatter.pdf

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