Perilous Times Primer #29 - Biblical Standards and Divine Institutions
It is a pleasure for me to post this guest article by Ken Buck, offered as the next installment in our Perilous Times Primer series.
Ken has been involved in a great mission work overseas through his ministry—C.O.R.E. (Christian Out Reach and Evangelism). Ken and I went on our first mission trip together in 1992. That journey was filled with many trials, challenges, and dangers. After we taught at a very poor village where the Christians met under a tree, Ken was handed a note by an old man, requesting that he pray and see how he might help them build a church. That was 121 churches ago! Ken has been busy building churches, supporting pastors and their families, and many other good works.
Ken is not only my cousin by blood, but much more importantly, he is a brother and fellow-soldier in the faith—in every sense of the word.
Enjoy his article!
Everything that is good within our personal lives, within our families, our society, our nation, and our world can be traced back to the Word of God. When you think about the influence of biblical standards and divine institutions in our lives, it’s astonishing. Everything that is virtuous, right, and pure within this world emanates from God. I can't think of one good thing that can be realized apart from following what is found in the Bible. Biblical standards and divine institutions are a product of the love of God and, by themselves, prove the very existence of God. Without the influence and instruction given to us in the Word of God, depravity, corruption, and evil would go virtually unchecked, and we would be living in chaos.
The virtues and benefits of biblical standards and divine institutions directly affect three major categories of life:
Marriage and Family
Marriage and family are the essential building blocks for any healthy society or nation. The unity of the family provides for the wellbeing of the individual and is the only real welfare system that works. Without marriage and family, we end up with poverty, crime, and chaos. The harmony within a marriage and a family is only possible if we follow the biblical instructions to love, honor, and serve one another. Children are admonished to submit to the authority of their parents who have been charged—by God—to raise their children to be honest, responsible, and productive individuals within society. The Word of God is the most insightful manual of instruction we could ever want or need.
Marriage and family have not only been redefined by our government, but also greatly diminished in value. There are now more broken, fatherless homes than ever before. The root of the problem is a welfare system that encourages dependency. The welfare state has contributed more to the destruction of the American family than any other single cause. Within a functioning family, you have a father and a mother who love, protect, instruct, and provide for their children. Welfare, on the other hand, can only hope to sustain life, but lacks the ability to improve it. Far too often, children who come from broken homes turn to alcohol, drugs, and gangs as substitutes to fill the void in their lives.
Law and Order
Law and order and the protection of our society—in large part—is a direct result of our adherence to the Word of God. Instructions throughout the Bible clarify how we should conduct ourselves as individuals and as a society. Government was established by God for our protection and as a mechanism of enforcement to dissuade and control lawlessness. Law and order cannot be enforced without the punitive actions, punishments, and corrections that only a government can provide; and submission to government authority is commanded as long as it meets the biblical requirement of law and order, and promotes good—not evil.
Law and order can only be realized if the laws within the nation promote freedom, protection, and personal responsibility. In today’s world, laws are being ignored to the detriment of our society and our nation. With the imposition of political correctness, we are being deprived of our ability to think, act, and speak without criticism and chastisement. Our constitution and our laws are being ignored by the very politicians we have elected to defend and enforce them. Lawlessness in our society is rampant. Although all of the liberties and freedoms we have enjoyed in the past can be traced back to the Word of God, it is now politically incorrect to even say so. In today’s world, not only have our liberties and freedoms come under attack, but the very Word of God—from where they are derived—is now being described as a book filled with bigotry, narrow-mindedness, and hate-speech.
Today, biblical standards and divine institutions are coming under attack like never before. Our government and our politicians seem to be bent on promoting instability and chaos. Personal virtues and personal responsibilities are being neglected and criticized. It’s as if the biblical warning of “reap and sow” no longer applies to this generation. In today’s world, one can choose to remain ignorant, lazy, and irresponsible, and still be rewarded for it. In generations past, independence was not only encouraged by society, but demanded. Now, however, dependency on government for our essential needs seems to be the accepted norm. It’s as if we have allowed our politicians to replace our dependence upon ourselves—and God—with government. In effect, it appears as if our government is actually seeking to become our God.
Biblical standards and divine institutions are being ignored and attacked by all who reject the authority of the Word of God. We who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and desire to submit to the authority of the Word of God are living in the middle of a war zone. Good is being portrayed as evil and evil is being portrayed as good. Good is, and always will be, opposed by evil. The outcome of human good—apart from God—always results in evil. The best example of this is the welfare system—implemented and introduced as a war on poverty—that has resulted in the weakening of the individual, our society, and our nation. Dependency is now the order of the day, and anyone who expresses faith in what the Word of God teaches (where personal virtues are developed) is being mocked, maligned, despised, and vehemently opposed.
I fear for this once great nation, which was founded firmly on principles from the Word of God, and I am saddened by the turning of our backs on the very God whose Word made America possible. I am concerned that this nation will never again regain its greatness simply because we have wasted too much time trying to effect change through political means. There are no political solutions to spiritual problems. We are a nation founded on the Word of God and, if we are to avoid destruction, we must return to God and return to His Word.
God is not dead, His Word is still true, and His judgment—though delayed—will never be denied!