Between the Ends: June 14, 2016


Buried in the pages of Holy Scripture is a passage, that while often misunderstood, provides a primer on the present world and its equally present clamor for “coming together.”  Now, don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of good reasons and plenty of biblical precedent for believers coming together and defending causes that advance holiness, promote biblical worship, and involve a clear presentation of the Gospel. They may advance the principles behind Philippians 4:8 or even good common sense living.
But, what  I hear most of  the time, and mostly from the media, has less to do with calling God’s people to address their biblical conscious and more often is used as a hook to attract anyone and everyone to an emotional soft-spot that precludes any inspection and critical examination.
In Genesis 11, Moses records the plea of a man we believe to be named Nimrod, who says in verse 3, “Come, let us make bricks…” and in the next verse, “come, let us build ourselves a city.” So, what’s the problem you say? Sounds like a good plan.
  1. For starters, when I hear, “let’s come together”, I’m reminded that it’s often a veiled attempt to eliminate the proper distinctions between people of biblical faith and people of the world. I may come together with anyone to condemn a tragedy, but I cannot come together with those who would either seek my physical destruction or those who would shrewdly use any opportunity to contribute to my moral demise. Can we always differentiate between what we can all agree with, and what may bruise our collective biblical conscience?  The Prophet Amos has something to say about that. (Amos 3:3)
  2. Secondly, it suggests a loosening of theological restraint so as not to hinder anyone from being a part of the larger group. Those who represent a larger consensus must be right and can then easily ignore the “unwarranted distinctions” that cause some people of biblical faith to express concern. In a world driven by emotional manipulation, and not ideas, it’s only the “group think” that matters.  I mean, after all, who doesn’t agree that sex trafficing is evil, but, well, abortion, hmm, got to think about that.
  3. Thirdly, and maybe the most damning; it assumes the goal in “coming together” is automatically valid, without considering the possibility that the gathering is neither culturally advisable biblically defendable,or morally commendable.

Consider this from Genesis 11. Those who were seeking a consensus to build a tower to the heavens, had neither God in mind or the worship of His Person– a fact that I hope to bring out on Sunday. Their interest was a self-centered, even demonic push to unite around the god of this world. God put an end to such nonsense then as He always will when the cause is not just, and the direction is not true. It may not happen today, nor tomorrow, and my plea is that we would find our hope in God and our salvation in Jesus alone. I’m not at all bitter, only hopeful that the “Angels of our better nature”, will fall at God’s feet and seek his presence and his perfect will.  

Now, that is something that we can come together to believe.