It is early Saturday morning, March 9, 2019. I have been up most of the night talking with God about what I needed to share with you in this week’s blog. God brought to my mind a verse that has haunted me for almost 18 years. The first time that this verse impacted my life was in 2001, shortly after the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center and US Pentagon. The picture to the left is an ad that ran in Time magazine right after the 911 attacks. At the bottom of the ad were the words, America’s diversity is united under one ideal . The meaning of those words can be understood by the caption under the picture that read,
God, Allah, Krishna, Waheguru, Jehovah bless America [emphasis mine]
I realized that whenever I heard someone say, “God bless America”, they might be saying that any god can bless us because all gods are equal. It was at that time I came across this verse.
Hear the word of the Lord, you children of Israel, for the Lord brings a charge against the inhabitants of the land: There is no truth or mercy or knowledge of God in the land. Hosea 4:1 (NKJV)
That is quite a charge against God’s people. It gets even worse when you read what was common in the land at that time. Does this describe us today?
Cursing, lying, murder, stealing, and adultery are rampant; one act of bloodshed follows another. Hosea 4:2 (HCSB)
Many people would say that this is true in our country today. However, God did not make this charge against a country in the general sense of the word. When God said in the land, He was talking about Israel. If we were to apply this verse to us today, it would read that there is no truth or mercy or knowledge of God in the church or the body of Christ. You might say that isn’t true in today’s church. The church knows who God is and it stands for truth and mercy. Before we brush this aside as not being relevant to today’s church, we need to consider some of the current conditions of the land. Here are just a couple of things that I have seen over the last few weeks.
- On February 25th, the US Senate defeated a bill that would require a baby that survived an abortion to be given proper care and not simply be allowed to die. The actual wording of the bill said this. Any infant born alive after an abortion or within a hospital, clinic, or other facility has the same claim to the protection of the law that would arise for any newborn, or for any person who comes to a hospital, clinic, or other facility for screening and treatment or otherwise becomes a patient within its care. It went on to state that whoever intentionally performs or attempts to perform an overt act that kills a child born alive…shall be punished as under section 1111 of this title for intentionally killing or attempting to kill a human being. By defeating this bill, the Senate actually approved infanticide. Then a mere 9 days later, some of the same people who voted against keeping a newborn baby alive made public appearances with an ash drawn cross on their foreheads marking the beginning of Lent. The real tragedy in all of this is that Christians are in many ways responsible for these people holding public office. Would watching this from the throne room in Heaven cause God to say, There is no truth or mercy or knowledge of God in the church?
- I recently watched an undercover video where a pregnant woman was talking with a counselor at a Planned Parenthood facility. When the woman asked if she would see the fetus when it was aborted, she was told no. When asked what would happen if the fetus showed signs of life at the time of the abortion, it was explained to her how the fetus would be placed in a jar of toxic liquid that would immediately take care of such a problem. Then the pregnant woman asked what should she do if, by chance, the baby would come out while at home. The response was simply, Flush it. When pushed further on what to do if it was born at home, she was told to put it in a bag and bring it to us and we will take care of it. Again, it must be noted that Christians have voted people into office who then voted to fund Planned Parenthood. Would this cause God to say There is no truth or mercy or knowledge of God in the land?
- This morning I read where a judge in another country ruled that a parent that tries to dissuade his/her child from transgender “treatments” is guilty of family violence. Another account was recently reported where transgender “treatments” (including injection of gender altering drugs) can be administered to children as young as 14 without parent consent. Many countries now require all schools’ curriculum to include the normalization of LBTGQ lifestyles. Even where this is not legally required, it is fast becoming a part of most secular educational programs in many countries and states. Yet, the majority of Christian parents still voluntarily enroll their children in schools where they will get this and other forms of anti-Christian teachings on a daily basis in almost all their courses. Do you think that God might have to say, There is no truth or mercy or knowledge of God in the land?
- The divorce rate in “Christian marriages” is no different than the divorce rate in non-Christian marriages. When one considers what God says on this subject and its impact on children in Malachi 2:13-16, would God have to say, There is no truth or mercy or knowledge of God in the land?
- A couple of weeks ago I wrote a blog highlighting the bold stand taken by an African pastor at the United Methodist conference that was recently held in St. Louis. Thankfully, the church leaders of this denomination voted to stay true to the biblical teaching on human sexuality, marriage and pastoral ordination. However, as I followed this with great interest, I was dismayed when I read that the vote to stay true to Scripture was 438 (53%) to 384 (47%). When only 53% of a denomination’s leadership stand on the side of Scripture, there is cause for concern. I also read several statements made by some of the denomination’s leaders (pastors, seminary presidents, etc.) after the vote who said that regardless of the vote their churches/institutions were going to continue to be inclusive to all people. Does God have a charge against His church that would cause Him to say, There is no truth or mercy or knowledge of God in the land?
I could go on with many other examples that demonstrate that today’s church is much like Israel was in Hosea’s day. God can easily say to you and me that there is no truth or mercy or knowledge of God in the land. When you go and read further in this chapter, you can understand what led God to bring such a serious charge against His people.
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge…you have rejected knowledge, Hosea 4:6 (NKJV)Israel had rejected truth. The leaders, including the parents, were not teaching truth to the people. The result was that they were being destroyed. The consequences that come from rejecting knowledge/truth is very heartbreaking. Listen to what God says He will do when His people reject knowledge.
Because you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children. Hosea 4:6b (NKJV)
Another translation states because you have ignored My law, I will ignore your children. The truth is that our children and grandchildren will always inherit the consequences of our generation’s decisions. This is clearly seen when God dealt with His people when they “voted” not to go into the Promise Land.
And your sons shall be shepherds in the wilderness forty years, and bear the brunt of your infidelity Numbers 14:33 (NKJV)
Another translation says that their children would wander in the wilderness for 40 years and bear the penalty for your acts of unfaithfulness. I fear for my children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Will they have to wander in a postmodern, anti-Christian culture and suffer because of my acts of unfaithfulness? This has caused me great grief throughout this entire week. I can’t get it off of my mind and have continually asked God, what must I do so that future generations don’t have to wander in the wilderness?
This past Wednesday morning, I opened my Bible app on my phone to read the verse of the day. As I read the verse of the day, the words pierced my heart. That verse and several other verses that I have studied since then have caused me to clearly see what God wants me to do. Tomorrow I will share with you what I believe God wants from His people today. I believe that each of us must take the action I will outline in tomorrow’s blog, if not for anything else, for the sake of our children!