I Cannot Celebrate Today

July 04, 2016

I am a very patriotic man, with no reservations. My flag has been out on my lawn since Memorial Day. I'm grateful for the privileges and freedoms we have. It has paved the way for the freedom of religion and the propagation of the gospel, both here and around the world, that is so vital to the spread of God's truth.
 
But this 4th of July, my heart is not filled with celebration, but heaviness. 2 Kings 25 exactly expresses what I see in our nation right now.
 
8 Now on the seventh day of the fifth month, which was the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard, a servant of the king of Babylon, came to Jerusalem.
9 He burned the house of the Lord, the king’s house, and all the houses of Jerusalem; even every great house he burned with fire.
10 So all the army of the Chaldeans who were with the captain of the guard broke down the walls around Jerusalem.
11 Then the rest of the people who were left in the city and the deserters who had deserted to the king of Babylon and the rest of the people, Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away into exile.
 
The enemy has come in like a flood and the walls--of righteousness, holiness and truth--are broken down. Only one illustration is needed to see how far we’ve fallen, (although there are many more)—the killing of 1 MILLION babies a year. Godless past leader's atrocities pale in comparison to the 55 million unborn children we have killed since 1973. We are no longer a civilized nation. Wrong is considered right and right is considered wrong. And the walls are burning.
 
OUR ONLY HOPE
 
There is one remedy, as always . . . to humble ourselves before the God who made us, repent of incessantly ignoring Him, and cry out to Him for deliverance. But, if we do not, we are no different than any land that has turned its back on its Maker. And we will fall under the same judgment from a righteous God.
 
We must understand that judgment is a merciful act from a gracious God. Like pain to the human body it is designed to alert us to something that is destroying us. It is a warning to quickly awaken and make radical adjustments. God has used nature, nations, and godless natural leaders to bring this warning to people in the past. But if we ignore the pain, or the judgment, we will continue down a fast path to destruction.
 
And the greatest judgment? It is when God does nothing. When He lifts His hand. It happens at our instigation, when we have told Him we do not want Him . . . and He allows us to eat the fruit of our own ways. We get what we want, and only too late realize that “every good and perfect gift” we have enjoyed in the past has come from God.
 
I cannot celebrate much today in my heart. But I CAN humbly pray . . . and I must.




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