Government Amateur Hour

For behold, the Lord God of hosts is going to remove from Jerusalem and Judah both supply and
support … and I will make mere lads their princes, and capricious children will rule over them, and the
people will be oppressed, each one by another, and each one by his neighbor … O My people! Their
oppressors are children, and women rule over them. O My people! Those who guide you
lead you astray, and confuse the direction of your paths. (Isa 3:1, Isa 3:4-5, Isa 3:12)
The words of the prophet Isaiah, written over 2,700 years ago, speak directly to the condition of our nation today. We are a nation with the greatest spiritual heritage of any nation on earth in modern times, yet we have lost our way. Indeed, the foundations are destroyed (Psa 11:3), and the whole house is shaking. For decades, our leaders have consistently sought to push God and His Word further and further out of our halls of learning and from the seat of government. Now, we begin to reap the results of Suppress[ing] the truth in unrighteousness (Rom 1:18), bringing on ourselves the “wrath of God.” One former State Department official recently asked what he thought of our current foreign policymakers said, “It is like watching amateur hour!”
Spiritual Accountability
Yet, however much we might like to blame our national ills on the failure of corrupt leaders at every level of government, we as Christians must shoulder an even greater degree of blame. There is a clear principle that runs throughout the Word of God that has been summarized, “As goes the believer, so goes the nation.” National decay always follows spiritual apostasy. Nor can we point our fingers at this or that group or denomination, for we all share alike in the failure. When Daniel prayed his magnificent prayer for the restoration of his nation, he identified himself as guilty of the sins of his people (Dan 9:3-19). The great prophet, though one of the most blameless men in all of Scripture, recognized that we all are the salt of the world (Mat 5:13). If we fail to flavor our generation with grace and truth, we cannot hope to act as a preservative force in our times.
Recently, I heard a message by well-known apologist, Ravi Zacharias, in which he spoke of the effects of pluralism and secularism in our current society. Summarizing the many ills and perversions of our present state, he said (I paraphrase), “when we find ourselves in such a state, the beginning of victory is found only in the realm of prayer.” I heartily agree with his assessment. There will be no political or cultural recovery for this nation unless there is first a spiritual revival that begins with the humbled and chastened believers across this land accepting accountability for our failure to our generation.
We all know the promise of 2Ch 7:14 (read it again), but do we really believe it? Have we made a resolute decision to exercise our priesthood as a representative of our generation? Will we, like Abraham (Gen 18:22-33), plead the case of our nation relentlessly for the few of the remnant that remain? If we personally are unwilling to “stand in the gap” (Eze 22:30), how can we escape the culpability for the destruction of our beloved nation? The gates of Heaven should be shaking with the repeated knocking of God’s people in behalf of our country! And I say this not only that our nation might be spared, but for the children of God throughout the world.
I could not tell you the impact it had on me when I heard a pastor in Pakistan say, “When America is strong, Christians here in Pakistan are safer and more free.” I will never forget the statement of a young Christian woman in Nigeria when I made the comment that America was in spiritual decline and would soon fall under the judgment. She looked at me with a look of genuine fear and asked, “Then what will become of us?” The poor and oppressed of the family of God throughout the world look to believers in America to pray for them. Certainly, America sends out many missionaries, and funds much that is done in poorer countries with regard to ministry, and even humanitarian aid. But as we travel the globe, we are urged again and again by truly impoverished believers, “Even more than financial help, give us your prayers!”
Time to Stand
I write this just a few moments before leaving for India and Burma. We will again have the privilege of fellowship with some of the richest saints in the world (Rev 2:9). We will strive to lift and encourage believers who have nowhere to look for “hope and change”—but up. And we will reassure them of the continued prayers of their brothers and sisters in America, Land of the free and home of the brave.” May I urge each one of you to make a solemn and resolute commitment to never allow your spiritual courage to falter, nor your freedom to be lost. For as long as even one child of God “stands firm” (Eph 6:13-14) in this generation in America, the light of liberty still shines and true bravery lives.
Let’s stop belly-aching about the loss of temporal freedoms, and “stand fast … in the liberty with which Christ has set us free” (Gal 5:1)! Pray for your nation! Pray for our courageous troops, now having to serve under a weak and dithering commander-in-chief who does not have the stomach for a real fight. Pray that pastors will get the guts to “Preach the word” (2Ti 4:2) without compromise.
If we want to get graft and corruption out of our government, it would be good to begin housecleaning in our corrupt and gain-seeking pulpits! How true it is that “judgment begins at the house of God” (1Pe 4:17). Let each of us begin to explore the power and dynamic of true spiritual priesthood by beginning with ourselves (Ezr 7:10) so that deliverance might be given to our nation and our generation. Our future does not depend on our weak and wavering national leaders, it depends on us—you and me—to begin the work of recovery through a spiritually aggressive assault on the world forces behind the scenes (Eph 6:10-14). For we are assured that, if in all our weakness, we will but call on Him in humility and purity, God will shake the foundations of the earth to answer our prayers (read Psa 18:1-50)!
His servant,
Gene Cunningham

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