Every day when we get on the Internet or turn on the news, the headlines seem to get worse: “Turkey shoots down Russian plane as WW3 trends on Twitter”, “Iran captures US Sailors” and “North Korea tests nuclear missile”. Meanwhile, many Americans understand it’s not just outside threats that pose a danger. The US government poses as great a threat to peace as any nation on Earth, and seems to be rivaling much of the world in its assault on liberty. The NSA collects our phone records, there is a constant push for gun control, and the Keynesian utopians at the Federal Reserve continue pushing the dollar and the world economy down to perdition, all while the national debt pushes on $19 trillion.
The 2016 election offers only a false sense of hope. In past election cycles, candidates on the Republican side would pay at least token lip service to balancing the budget and eliminating regulations. The Democratic candidates would generally claim they opposed the war of the moment. In this election cycle, all pretense is gone. The Democrats don’t even talk much about foreign policy, and when they do, it’s about how they will increase US intervention overseas. The Republican candidates aren’t any better. Some may even be worse.
The world is a turbulent place indeed. We are living in troubled times. Many people are suffering and many more are scared. But we do have hope, and that hope is not in a political candidate or in any specific ideology. It is in Jesus Christ.
I can say with absolute certainty that things will get worse over time. This is disturbing to think about, but it’s a fact. Christians know this because we see Biblical prophesy being fulfilled all the time in world events. Non-believers who pay attention can also see it doesn’t get any better from here, for both the country and for the world. We need not be afraid though. We have hope in Jesus Christ.
Politics isn’t working, and arguably never really has. What we need is an awakening, a spiritual revival. We need to put our faith in Jesus Christ and in Him alone for hope, for peace and ultimately for salvation. Matthew 12:21 tells us “and his name will be the hope of nations”. If we repent of our sins and turn to Him, we can have hope, in this world and the next.
We have to understand and to help others understand that Jesus wasn’t just some nice guy, a good teacher, a holy man or a prophet. He was the Son of God, our creator and our redeemer. He came to Earth in human flesh to take the punishment for our sins. He was blameless, but we were and are an evil people. Even the best of us are totally tainted with sin. He took our sin on Himself on the cross, He made the sacrifice for all of us, even those who turn their backs on Him and deny Him.
We are evil and sinful by our very nature, but He loved us enough to take that sin on Himself and endure intense suffering and even separation from the Father for us. He was buried and rose again on the third day, conquering death and defeating sin once and for all. Because of this, all we have to do is believe in Him and what He did for us, and that by the redeeming blood he shed for us on the cross, we are saved.
We don’t have to follow a long list of rules, do a list of good deeds, or perform religious rituals. In fact, none of us could ever do enough good to earn our way into Heaven. Our redemption was already bought with the blood of Christ, we just have to accept it with faith and repent of our sins. Once we accept Christ and repent by turning from our sins and giving ourselves to Him, we are saved! After we do this, we will want to do good, because we are transformed spiritually, and will want to glorify God through our actions.
Sin is no longer a death sentence. When we do it, we confess it to God and get back in the fight. 1 John 1:9 tells us, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” Unfortunately, we will likely never have freedom from government on any major scale. Thankfully we do have freedom from the curse of sin and death. Galatians 5:1 says “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free!” So regardless of what happens with government or the world, we know we have freedom and life in Christ.
Things are bad and will get worse, we all know this. We can take comfort in Christ’s own words when he says “Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul” (Matthew 10:28). Regardless of what happens, we know that if we repent and turn from our sins and trust in Christ and only Him for salvation, we will have eternal life.
Jesus said “those who have ears let him hear” when he spoke of the signs that would foretell His second coming. He spoke of wars, revolutions, persecutions of Christians (such as what is taking place in the Middle East with ISIS), earthquakes and natural disasters. We know many of these things have been going on for a long time. But there is no denying that the world has reached a boiling point, and we should take this as a sign of the eminence of His return.
Now is the time to put aside our faith in politics and worldly ideas and put our faith in Him. It’s time to repent, to turn from our sin, and lead a great spiritual revival, brining as many people to Christ as we can. The world may be burning, but we have a Savior, so we have no reason to be afraid.
I will leave with Jesus’ own words. “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33