What Are We Missing?

I feel numb. I feel sad, and really afraid at where we, our nation and our world are headed. We keep repeating the same rhetoric every time there is a mass shooting. We seem to be stuck. We cannot seem to venture out to try to have open, honest discussions because we are so locked into our positions.

What are we missing?

One party says that unless we say certain words – Radical Islam – which for them means that we cannot be serious about addressing terrorism. The other party believes to use that term would be disparaging the whole Muslim religion.

This weekend, there was yet another mass shooting. Families have lost their loved ones. Our nation is again grieving and trying to figure out how to stop the senseless violence.

What are we missing?

Just last week, we were deep into why our justice system seems so unfair when a white young male received as a sentence for rape, six months in jail. His father pleading in a letter that a prison sentence would negatively change his son’s life forever for the 20 minutes of action. He felt the penalty was too steep and that his son could not endure the prison system. His son ends up with the six month sentence.

Of course there was a lot of backlash against the judge, and blame for the parent who apparently considered not the life long scars of the young woman his son violated, and how this may perpetuate a rape culture.

What are we missing?

In the wake of the Orlando shooting at Pulse, a gay night club, someone giving a report on MSNBC says that we cannot tolerate hate speech. I agree. But then he mentioned it shouldn’t be preached from the pulpits. What did he mean by that? What should preachers do now? Obey man or obey God? I have sat in church all of my adult life, and while I have heard preachers preach against sin including lying, murder, adultery, fornication, homosexuality, idolatry, the preaching was never about hating people who sin. We all sin. It was preaching what the Word of God says about our sin, and about turning from our sins and turning to God, who out of his compassionate love for us sinners, gave his Son, Jesus Christ to die for the sins of all who would believe.

What are we missing?

I just read this post that looked at the drafting of our Constitution and the thinking then, even as the first 10 states came into the union. What happened? We basically believed the Bible was our guide. We were mainly Protestant.  The blog also refers to a book written by Bill Federer, Backfired – A Nation Born for Religious Tolerance No Longer Tolerates the Religion of Its Founders. It sounds like an interesting read.

As Christians, we are called to love. We are also called to hate. Yes, we are. We hate what God hates sin, our sin. We love by speaking the truth of the gospel with compassion and in love, but we must speak the truth. We don’t disparage groups. I know there are fanatics that may, but that is only because they don’t understand, and have a zeal but not according to the knowledge of God’s Word.

What are we missing?

I believe that we have long departed from the Bible, and gone on our own way. We have long stopped letting it be our authority for living. So now we call evil good, and good evil. We call wrong right, and right wrong. We want no absolutes.

There is a way back.

I know there are many belief systems in the world, and I probably sound arrogant to state that there is only One Way, but I share this with the love of God in my heart.

The Apostle Paul tells Christians that there is:

One Lord, one faith, one baptism. 6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. Ephesians 4:5-6

When one of the disciples asked Jesus Christ about the way, Jesus said:

I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. John 14:6

Even in the Apostle Paul’s day, there were many who worshiped other gods, to which he stated:

The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, 25 nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything. 26 And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place, 27 that they should seek God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us. Acts 17:24-27 ESV

I believe that our way back is returning to the God of the Bible, and his Word as our foundation for living.

So, what are we missing?

We are missing Truth. His Word is Truth.

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10 thoughts on “What Are We Missing?

  1. Yes. A few observations here. 1) Christians need to be less obsessed with condemning the world for its sins and spread the love of God and Gospel message instead–tendency to be Pharisaical and legalistic. 2) The world needs to tolerate Christian views just as we are called by the world to tolerate the world’s views. 3) The world needs to understand that Biblical standards do not mean that Christians hate anyone–unfortunately, many Christians have fueled this misunderstanding by acting hatefully. 4) Christians won’t shape culture by condemnation or legislation; they will shape culture by loving others as Christ commands and sharing the Gospel. We are a people staying from God, and from where I sit, I see the Church pushing more away than bringing in.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes. And by “Church” with a capital “C” I meant the broader Christian community, not a bricks and mortar church. In this context, I am always reminded of Jesus’ words to the adulterous woman whom the Pharisees wanted to stone: “Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.” Love without condemnation or condonation. That right there, the world cannot understand. The world assumes that if we do not condone then we condemn and do not love.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Excellent article. What we have lost – Religion, respect and responsibility.
    Religiously worshiping and believing and living as if there is a Holy God in heaven.
    Respect for others and their property and good name.
    Responsibility for our actions.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This post is on point. Thanks for sharing that. We are missing something for sure – missing the Christ that’s been kicked of the public square, town hall, and schoolrooms. The Christ that’s been reduced to just being any of a long list of moral teachings/religions instead of being recognized as “The Way.” Just another way of living that might be “for me” or “not for me”. I guess a shorter way if putting it is – we are missing “The Truth”

    Liked by 1 person

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