As I sit down to write this I am mindful of the moral collapse that is plaguing or nation. Inner city crime has spread to small towns and communities all across America, drugs have become an epidemic problem that virtually every family in America is dealing with, and sexual perversions of every kind have become socially acceptable. We pick up video cameras and idly watch while people are murdered, raped, and beaten instead of lending a helping hand and then use the video as a form of entertainment. School shootings, the knockout game, and all sorts of acts of violence are no longer random; they have become all too common.
When the tragedies come we ask, “Who is to blame?”, “Who’s responsible for this great tragedy?” We first start pointing our fingers at the parents saying they are to blame, then to the schools noting that they should have had better security or should have been more aware of their student’s activities. We even want to pass the blame on the guns themselves desiring to sue the gun manufacturers. We say we need better laws or better politicians who will write better laws. Christians love to pass the blame onto the ACLU and those “Liberal” activist judges. “They have kicked prayer out of school” we say. But, are we praying at home with our children? We fuss “They have removed God’s Word from the schools.” But, are we teaching our children God’s Word at home? We want to pass the buck but who has God given the responsibility to?
A passage of scripture I have often found intriguing is in Mark 14:17-21. Jesus was having the last supper with His disciples when He said to them, “One of you will betray Me.” What I find so intriguing about this text of scripture is the fact that Peter didn’t say “I know it’s John I never really trusted him all that much anyway.” Nor did John say no “it has to be Matthew, you know he use to be a tax collector.” Instead each one turned to Jesus asking “Surly not I.” They weren’t passing the blame; they just wanted to make sure they were staying in right relationship. One of the major downfalls of modern society is that we are unwilling to accept responsibility for our own actions. Instead we want to find someone else to pin it on. It seems as though taking responsibility for your own actions has gone the way of the ancient word.
However, when it comes to the spiritual condition of this world there is only one institution that God has granted power and authority to; the power and authority to overcome the spiritual forces of wickedness and tear down the gates of Hell. It is the church. Jesus said in Matthew 28:18 “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.” He then said in the next verse of the same chapter, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.” Out of the same breath that He said I have all authority, He said Go. In other words we, the church, should go out into the world with the authority and the power of Jesus making disciples, which are followers of Jesus.
Jesus also told the church in Matthew 16:19, 20 “I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.” If the power of God is not falling down upon this earth to change the heart of man and transform him into whom God so desires him to be there is none other to blame than the church. The church is the only institution that God has chosen to work through. There is no other. Therefore if the church is not fulfilling the callings that God has placed upon them heaven will be bound. God did not say if the government, or if the school systems, or if the laws, or even if society gets right that He would heal the land. He said, “if my people who are called by My name.” God has given the call, He has given the authority, and He has given the power. We simply have to accept it and walk in it. (An excerpt from Reclaiming the Land: God’s Formula for Revival).