In the next few weeks, President Donald Trump will speak before Congress for his fourth State of the Union address.
There have been numerous unprecedented accomplishments that this administration has achieved over the past three years—critically, the appointment of two constitutionalist justices to the U.S. Supreme Court and more than 170 conservative judges to other federal courts.
But most significant, this current administration has kept its promise to protect the precious religious liberties that had been under relentless assault from the progressive Left, whose ideology permeated the prior White House.
This White House has staunchly supported people of faith. It has reversed the Obama-led transgender bathroom directive for public schools; signed an executive order to protect religious freedom; held the first-ever Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom sponsored by the U.S. State Department; and addressed the United Nations in a historic call for religious freedom and an end to persecution. The Trump administration has also been a strong advocate for the pro-life cause, including protecting the rights of religious organizations that object to abortifacients.
This is why there is so much at stake in the upcoming elections. If the White House is once again occupied by yet another progressive, much of the progress that has been made can quickly be reversed. If that is the case—and I hope it is not—then Christian businesses, professionals, pastors and churches will face increasing hostility from the courts and Washington.
In my mind, the year 2020 will mark a defining, watershed year in the long and storied history of our great nation. Will we continue to protect the freedoms of Christians to live and abide by their Biblical convictions? Will pastors be able to proclaim and preach the uncompromising Word of God without their messages labeled as “hate speech”? Will the ungodly sexual agenda of the LGBTQ lobby be forced down the throats of our schools and our children?
I believe our nation is perched on a sheer moral precipice. If we are undermined much more by the decadent values of the leftist-progressives, we could plunge into a perilous moral collapse.
A recent report from Pew Research on the state of religion in our country shows just how precarious our situation is.
The study shows a dramatic decline in the number of Americans who identify as Christian. In 2007, 78% said they were Christians. In 2018-2019, that number dropped to 65%.
In other words, the spiritual state of our great union is quickly diminishing—not to mention how many souls are in peril.
That is obviously concerning, but even more telling is the rise of those who identify as atheist, agnostic, or “nothing in particular.” That number now stands at 26%, or one in four Americans.
Most troublesome is the large percentage of young people who rarely go to church and profess no particular view on faith. Called the “Nones,” that group now represents 44% of Americans ages 19-29, and they have little or nothing to do with religion at all. That doesn’t bode well for our future.
We desperately need a powerful move of the Holy Spirit.
We must pray for our president, for Congress, for our churches and for our leaders at every level. We know that God hears and answers the heartfelt prayers of His people. I am planning to visit several states for our Decision America Tour, starting Jan. 11 with six cities in Florida. I believe tens of thousands of people will intercede for our nation. And if millions of Christians across the country unite with us and pray fervently, then we will be obeying the Scripture (1 Timothy 2:1-3) and trusting God for the results. But we must pray.
Pray for repentance. Pray for revival. Pray for God to open blind eyes, unstop deaf ears and bring men and women—the Silent Generation, Boomers, Millennials, Gen X and Gen Z—to saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. It is regenerate people, born again by God’s Spirit, who are empowered by Him to live holy and godly lives.
Let’s also pray for a true submission to the authority of God’s Word in every area of life.
Obedience is a bedrock principle for any culture or society that yearns for the blessings and favor of a holy God. Without it, we are left to drift according to whatever norms the culture may adopt. This will inevitably lead to increasing wickedness and lawlessness.
God’s Word says that homosexuality is wrong, not acceptable. “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10, NKJV).
God’s Word says that marriage is between one man and one woman. Not between a woman and a woman or a man and a man. “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24, NKJV).
God’s Word says that life is precious in the womb, where every child is knitted together by God Himself. “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb” (Psalm 139:13, ESV). Abortion is the murder of a child, not the removal of fetal tissue.
When a culture rejects the truth and authority of the Word of God, then it has rejected none other than God Himself. True freedom comes when we live by the standard of Scripture, not by our own ill-defined standards. When “every man does what is right in his own eyes,” then the moral breakdown of a society is in full gear.
Psalm 19:7-10 assures us that the Word of the Lord is perfect, sure, right and pure.
The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul;
The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple;
The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart;
The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes;
The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever;
The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.
More to be desired are they than gold (NKJV).
Photo: Thomas J. Petrino/BGEA