Is Society Improving Part Two?

February 12, 2020 at 9:59 AM 4 comments

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Last time, we talked specifically about how God has at times, poured out His wrath in a global fashion (Noah’s Flood) and in a local fashion (Sodom and Gomorrah, Port Royal, etc.). In this article, I’d like to discuss why society as a whole continues to march toward Armageddon and God’s full wrath.

Port Royal was a very large port right near Jamaica. It was easy to get in and out of and prior to its destruction by natural disasters, it was home to many notorious pirates who were a law unto themselves. Interestingly enough, they had their own very detailed “pirate code.”

However, evil abounded at Port Royal. The level of violence one person to another has been chronicled by numerous authors and survivors of the 1692 devastation. It is amazing to me how cheap life was, how quickly life could be taken by some and how uncharitable people were at that time. But this appears to be humanity at its worst. Is it any wonder God chose to eliminate much of that society? When it happened, many believed God personally destroyed Port Royal using a three-pulse earthquake, liquefaction of sand underneath Port Royal, followed by several tsunamis. It’s as though God was using deadly exclamation points to drive the point of Port Royal’s deplorable condition home to the rest of the world. Did it change anything? No. It only slowed things down for a time.

If we think society is getting better, we really should think again. I live in what is known as the “Bible Belt” of the USA. It is here that most own a Bible, may go to church (or not), and talk about God all the time. Ask them what makes them a “believer” and you’ll hear everything but often not the reality of Scripture.

Yet, here in this same Bible Belt, there is garbage all over the roads. Much of the trash is composed of beer cans and bottles. No one wants to get caught with an open container in their car. Someone will pick up what they throw.

It is an interesting fact, by the way, that many of the “privateers/buccaneers” in Port Royal who later became pirates were very “religious.” They believed raiding Spanish (Roman Catholic) ships was right and even necessary because apparently, the Spanish had stolen at least some of that from Britain. It is ironic how we humans can justify our actions using religion.

Littering is symptomatic of a much larger problem, of course. I was reviewing my security camera out in front of our home one day and about 11:00pm one night, a neighbor drove very slowly by the camera in his work van. Right near the camera (where there’s a sign that says, “Please do not litter”), he gently tossed a Bud Light beer can from the driver’s side of the van, landing right near the base of the sign. The person was almost home. He could’ve easily taken the empty contents of his beer can and brought it into his own home, but preferred to toss it on the road. This type of thing used to anger me.

It seems God wants me to humble myself and simply pick up the garbage. If I went to the neighbor with photographic evidence of his littering, nothing good would come of it, I’m sure. In fact, things might escalate, regardless of how polite and nice I would be in bringing it to his attention. He knows what he’s doing. I don’t have to tell him.

But God has taught me something else and it has begun to open my eyes a bit. Sad to say that it has taken this long and for that I have apologized to Him. What has God been teaching me?

Before I get into that, let’s remind ourselves that society is in terrible condition because of the evil in people’s hearts. That is fact and only God can change that, which He will at some future point.

While things in society may have improved and may continue to improve here and there because of President Trump’s policies, the plain fact of the matter is that human beings are still fully corrupt, evil, debauched, fallen and aligned against God (Psalm 2). There is no good thing within any of us unless God deliberately places it there and that good thing is only found in Christ’s righteousness. The Bible clearly states that all people are fully wicked.

None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God.
All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.
Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive. The venom of asps is under their lips.
Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.
Their feet are swift to shed blood; in their paths are ruin and misery, and the way of peace they have not known.
There is no fear of God before their eyes. (Romans 3:10-18 ESV)

The text above is of course, from God’s perspective as the apostle Paul penned these words under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. All people are corrupt and evil as we’re born that way. No one is righteous, not even one.

The second law of thermodynamics states that things left to themselves go from order to disorder. This is exactly how the human heart operates and it takes God’s Presence and the recreation of His Son’s character within those who receive salvation to overcome and override this evil. The problem is that the evil within us continues to exist as long as we live. It remains a battle as long as we live in this life.

So with respect to littering (or any sin for that matter), we know that this is the natural propensity of all people. Some will allow themselves to be litter bugs. Others will become enamored with lying. Still others will rob and cheat, and finally, others will murder people. It all stems from the same problem – the evil within people. If left unchecked, it will go from order to disorder; bad to worse.

So what does God want me to do with people who litter? Well, here is what I’ve been learning. At first, as I said, I was angered by the lawlessness. God has shown me something extremely important in this situation.

I will admit I’m not good at “conversational evangelism.” I would certainly like to get better and I believe God will make that happen.

We heard from a missionary in the southern portion of France a few weeks ago who has learned to be “wise as serpents” and “gentle as doves” in evangelism. He shared that if he were to directly talk about the Gospel of Jesus, he would be rejected out of hand by the French. They have no patience for it and this is often the way other missionaries to various parts of Europe describe things as well. People are extremely jaded. They do not believe God exists and to bring up Jesus is to “demean” them by trying to discuss something that isn’t “true.”

So, he has learned to be creative in his evangelistic efforts. How? By asking questions of them, by interacting with them and by listening to what they have to say, which often provides an opening.

An example is when he hears someone say, “God does not exist.” His response is, “that’s what the Bible says too!” Incredulously, the listener at that point will ask “Where?!” The missionary will show them Psalm 14:1 with a post-it ™ note over the entire verse except for the words “There is no God” showing. The missionary will then ask the person to remove the post-it note. It opens the door to conversation.

But where do we actually start with evangelism? We start with our prayers. We must begin our efforts and continue our efforts bathed in prayer for people we are trying to reach even if we do not personally know them before we “meet” them. So what does this have to do with the people who toss their beer cans and other trash out on the road that goes past my home? Much indeed.

As I say, I used to get upset with litterers; seeing the trash, having to get a bag, going to retrieve it all, then tossing it properly away. During the process, I’d be tempted to wish they would just move or that God would “rebuke” them. I didn’t like being their “servant.”

I’ve come to another conclusion; one that bears striking resemblance to “love your neighbor as yourself.” I’ve realized if not for the fact that these mainly anonymous people toss their trash on the dirt road near my house, I’d probably never even be aware of them except possibly in passing. Most people who live in the country do so because they want to be left alone.

We’ve gotten to know our neighbors as best as we can since we often take recreational walks along the dirt road. But the people who are littering are not necessarily our neighbors with the exception of one particular individual that I know of now.

So now, when I see litter, my immediate response is yes, I’ll have to pick it up because no one else will do so. But, I also now use that as an opportunity to pray for these people! I pray that God will bless them; that He will begin the process of drawing them close to Him so that they will come to realize their need for salvation and actually ask Him for it!

In other words, what had been seriously frustrating has become a bit joyful, if you can believe it. Instead of wanting to pick up the garbage and place it on their lawn (that’s a temptation to do that; not that I would), I am reminded that there is another person who likely needs salvation. I am praying for them. Each piece of garbage is a reminder to me to pray for a faceless, nameless (to me), person who is driving by and littering. They need Jesus.

Full Disclosure: I have realized through this situation that I am not as humble as I should be. I am often tempted to think of myself as better than my “Bible Belt” neighbors.

Evangelism starts and ends with prayer. If I am earnest in continuing to pray for my littering neighbors, there may come a time when God will open doors for me to actually “conversationally evangelize” them. If not, I can rest assured that God will use someone to do that if not me. I don’t work with those people. I’m not in their circle of friends. We simply live on the same dirt road and our homes aren’t that physically close.

Every day, we hear of people who have passed into eternity. I am a student of history. I enjoy studying and learning about the lives of individuals and what life was like 100, 200, 300 or more years ago. My sadness usually bubbles to the top after watching a documentary, no matter how interesting, because I’m always asking the question, “Where are they now?

Where’s Neil Peart? Where’s John Denver? Where is Kirk Douglas and all the celebs from yesteryear who had everything they could possibly want and yet were unfulfilled and unsatisfied.

Many celebrities and well known people are conservative politically, but what about their salvation? Do they have that? Sadly, only a few and God likely has them in Hollywood to some degree as “missionaries” to the lost. The same is true of Christians in politics.

Christian, we need to be better at evangelism. I’m branching out, reaching for greater ways to learn to conversationally evangelize. However, it needs to be thoroughly undergirded with prayer.

I’m amazed that I no longer hate the idea of picking up someone’s litter. I welcome it as a reminder to pray that God will reach into that litterbug’s life and grab hold of them for Him.

Entry filed under: Atheism and religion, Cultural Marxism, devil worship, Emotional virtue, eternity, Global Elite, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, salvation. Tags: , , , , , , , , , .

Is Society Improving Part One? Faith vs Faithlessness

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Chijioke Umah  |  February 14, 2020 at 3:51 PM

    Thank you for the exposition. It’s great.

    Reply
    • 2. modres  |  February 14, 2020 at 6:31 PM

      Thank you for your kind words.

      Reply
  • 3. Terri Lewis  |  February 12, 2020 at 11:18 AM

    Thank you for posting this about a person who knowingly did a rather small wrong–yet did it on purpose, out of a bad heart. I needed this reminder just now. I am married to a man I married when I was young and foolish and did not know God. We have three children together–they each still need us to some extent. My husband has gone from being somewhat selfish, foolish, and proud to being very evil toward me and I am very, very often tempted to meet his evil in the wrong way.

    Of course, I need to protect myself, but I also need to pray for him as he becomes worse and worse. He has already lied to me for years, cheated on me, taken an irresponsible attitude toward work, overworked me, spread vicious gossip, and more. When I found out about so much of his wrongdoing, he was more angry at being caught than he was concerned about making it right toward me. His mind is utterly closed to the end times around us–and it is closing off to goodness faster and faster–despite the fact that our son was injured by vaccines, due to a careless and now outright evil entity that people are quite willing to work for, no matter the disability they cause and the infant lives taken.

    Even asking questions is not a starting point with him, as he is too proud to listen to anything I say and will not tolerate being questioned about anything. He shuts down all that is of importance to me.

    I am left with the lesson that all I can do for now is to pray for him and to root out any bitterness that I would naturally feel for someone who has so horribly used me–and replace it with the love that God has for him and God’s wish that if possible all be saved.

    Reply
    • 4. modres  |  February 12, 2020 at 11:48 AM

      Wow, Terri, thank you for sharing! I’m sure what you’re going through is very difficult at best. I will be in prayer for you. Seems like you’re doing it right. The apostle Paul tells wives in your situation to keep on as a silent witness of love because ultimately, it may end up being to your husband’s benefit.

      I’m glad you’re taking precautions. A dear elderly friend of ours was in your situation. He was actually a high up police official and he constantly denigrated her for her devotion to God and her Bible reading, etc. She put up with a lot. He died some time ago and she is in her 90s now, never remarried. It’s been a tough life, but I admire her so much because she is always conversationally evangelizing everyone she comes in contact with because of her love for God.

      The anger your husband feels is due to the way he feels about not knowing God. You and I both know that. Hopefully, God will get hold of him and turn him to Himself. We’ll both pray for that. Thanks again for writing!

      Reply

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