The North Star of Society
The church has always been the moral and spiritual “North Star” of society. It has always stood between society and moral rottenness and it has been striving to show people the right way to live life and please God. The world knows that if it can compromise the church and cause it to be just like the world, then, it follows that the voice of the church will be silenced or made to become insipid. Once compromised it can’t say a word to society about its actions but it must deal with its own moral and spiritual shift. The church will be so busy trying to be accepted that it will cease to remember what it is commissioned to do.
Many people say that the church must be like the world in order to attract its people. Then, they say, they can witness to them. You lose the witness in being like the world. Some say that Jesus identified with the sinners in order to save them. That is a totally different thing. He did not go about creating an environment to please the sinners so that they would come hear him preach and then be saved. He lived His life among the people of society but He always maintained a difference between Himself and them. That’s why they respected Him and looked to Him for answers and healing. What Jesus did is that He responded to sinners in their need. He did not become like them in order to save them. Jesus didn’t need to create a spectacle in order to attract a crowd. He was the “Spectacle” Himself. If we have the “Spectacle” among us and if we are faithful to preach the Gospel and witness of Him, then we don’t need to become like the world in order to attract and win them. We have the “Church Builder” Himself attracting the lost and drawing them to Himself, John 6.
We have lost our collective sense of shame. When people lose their personal sense of shame then it isn’t long before the nation as a whole feels shame for nothing. People have lost their sense of shame before God. They are more worried about what people think than they are about what God thinks. If they can hide something from people then they think they are home free with God as well. The reason for this is that they really don’t think God is there and that, if He is, He doesn’t care or won’t do anything about their shameful actions. He will just overlook them.
When a nation has no sense of shame then it speaks of the fact that they have lost their sense of moral and spiritual direction. When low morals are accepted then shame is not felt. The higher the moral and spiritual standard, the more profound the sense of shame. Because there is no shame, then there is no remorsefulness for sin. We will be remorseful for sin only if we know God is watching with grieved disapproval and impending judgment.
The secular society knows that as long as the church is doing its job properly, they can’t do as they would like to do without being called into question by the only thing that has the solution for sin: the Church. So, they have set about to keep the church from doing its job. They want to limit the church’s influence because they know that it is the church which stands between them and a life of license. Remember, if the church takes on the attributes of the world, (the current drift) and lowers its standards (a current fact) in order to be attractive to the world, then it has lost its right to point them in the proper direction toward Christ. We will have lost our ability to be the North Star of Society. The possession of the truth does not depend upon whether one is relevant or not. Whether one is relevant or not is dependent upon the possession of the truth. We are, in our day, trying to be so relevant that we are giving up our unique ability to stand against the spiritual and moral decay of our day. We must return to a sense of sanity and focus on what is the primary purpose of our worship. We are not the focus: God is. We exist to glorify Him in our worship and in our work. What the church is largely doing today is employing the “Disney-like” methods of the world in an attempt to do God’s work. These methods are worldly in their origination and God’s work is founded and energized by heaven. If worldly methods are employed to try to accomplish a heavenly task it will never work but will only produce confusion and misdirection. And, that’s where we are today in the majority of our churches. It is not our evaluation of success that matters. It is what God calls success that matters. He does not tell us to find any method to achieve what we consider success. He tells us to be faithful, deliver the Biblical message and let Him determine what happens.
William F. Harrell
June, 06 2013