The question of how to be “in the world and not of it” (John 17:16-18) is always front and center for Christians who take our commission to rule over the earth seriously (Genesis 1:24). The culture in which we live is blindly and rapidly turning from God and worshiping at the shrine of the new “woke-LGBTQ+” religion. Make no mistake, this is a satanic religion, making significant inroads into a slumbering, unaware church..
According to Statista, a data-gathering firm, today “never” and “seldom” church-goers outnumber “weekly” and “almost weekly” 56% to 30%. Also, the Pew Research Center says:
“As recently as the early 1990s, about 90% of U.S. adults identified as Christians. In 2007 the share was at 78%. Today, that number is down to 64%. Since 2007, the share of adults who identify as religious “nones” has grown from 16% to 29%.” https://t.co/BELUlKdCdu
We in America are being “conformed to this world” (Romans 12:2) and to the culture Satan is increasingly spawning. The church, for the most part, is providing no answers. However, we have been created for exactly such a time as this. Satan is not docilely accepting his defeat at the cross, but continuing to frantically fight with the only weapon he still has left—lies and deceit. How is the church reacting to our current, rapidly declining culture?
Sadly, many Christians see their only job is to save souls and nurture these souls to maturity so they can save other souls, and then teach their children to do likewise, on and on down through the generations. They are focusing on only the first part of our commission in Genesis 1:26, which says: “Then God said, (1) ‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And (2) let them have dominion . . . over all the earth.”
With this saving and nurturing as our only “vision,” we have become a church of what I call “navel-gazers”—reading my Bible, praying regularly, going to church, witnessing, etc.” We are focusing our attention, once we are saved, on being sure that our navels are lint-free! If this is all a naturally-occurring result of the full-on gospel of the grace of God in our lives and not our addiction to obedience to the law, that is a great and powerful beginning, but only a beginning.
Everyone needs a “lint-free navel” if we are to be conformed to God’s image, but that task has already been fully accomplished at the cross. When our mind-set is that we, right now, are being conformed to the image of God, steadily and irresistibly, by the Spirit within us (Part One of our commission), we can then lift up our eyes to the world around us. “OK, Father, I’m ready! Show me how I do what I am now equipped and was created to do—take ‘dominion’ (i.e., rule) over the earth” (commission, Part Two)
But before we can do so, we must first explore a question that all men, down through the ages since the Fall have unconsciously asked themselves. In John 18:38 at Jesus’ trial, Pontius Pilate asks this question, “What is truth?” We must have an answer to that question and know clearly the truth we will be establishing as we rule over the earth. What law will we embrace and enforce? We all, consciously or subconsciously, already have a basis for judging what is truth, What is yours?
Postmodernism is a way of thinking about truth that has been growing in America for the last 100 years. Today, it is one of the pillars of “Wokism.” It tells us that “Whatever is right for you is ‘your truth.’” You can decide for yourself. According to polling, this is the answer a majority of today’s college students give to Pilate’s question. So, if you feel like being the opposite gender, feel free, because that is the truth for you.
However, Jesus came to earth to be man as God intended man to be—His Image-bearer: His life on the earth perfectly demonstrated, in human flesh, the ULTIMATE TRUTH for us, for all time—the nature and character of God Himself! “He (Jesus) is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact likeness of His being” (Hebrews 1:3).
By the end of the 4th century, the canonization of the Scripture had occurred. Two international church councils had officially recognized what was already, very naturally, being practiced. The letters from the apostles and their close associates, universally accepted as comprising the direct Word of God to man, along with the already-accepted Old Testament, were officially canonized as Scripture—the very Word of God, the Holy Bible.
So, in the Bible, the church has, our objective standard of faith and conduct in all we do, whether it is the law of Moses in the Old Testament or the injunctions of Jesus and the Apostles in the New. The answer to Pilate’s question, “What is truth?” appears to be answered.
However, there are several verses that should give us pause. For example:”For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17). This verse seems to say that there is a difference between the Law of God, recorded for us in the Bible, and the Truth of God, found in the life of Jesus Christ, as recorded in that very Bible. Tune in next week as we investigate!