I have always been a person who loved to study history. If we learn from history, it will not repeat itself. However, if we fail to learn, history will certainly repeat itself because it is driven by human nature. In spite of all our education, knowledge, and advancement, human nature remains the same. We desperately need God, and without His counsel, we will fall into behaviors that will ultimately be self-destructive.
One problem found throughout history (and also true from the record of scripture) is that mistakes typically do not bring immediate results, so wrong behavior typically goes unchecked. We think that because times have changed, the lessons of the past (or the lessons from the Word of God) no longer apply. Much of the fruit from the wrong attitudes of the baby boomer generation in which I was raised are now beginning to bear fruit. We need to be mindful of these things so we can correct them before it is too late.
Have we abandoned discernment?
The baby boomer generation was very against authority structures. From the civil government, to the church, and in the family, the idea of submitting to authority was seen as just an unnecessary restraint against the “good life” that liberty would bring. Many of the conflicts against authorities had justifiable reasons. A good example of this was the authority structures that were used to discriminate on the basis of race and other differences in people that were intrinsic to whom they were. Prejudice, on the basis of race, was ingrained in many institutions and the minds of people. Thank God we recognized the right of all people to have civil rights protections in our governmental and social structures.
Unfortunately, the word “discriminate” has become a bad word when it should only be bad when applied incorrectly. The word “discriminate” as well as the biblical word “discernment” are very important in our decision-making process. They involve the choices we make and how we choose to live. The whole process of maturity should be to train our children about the need to make the right choices and avoid certain situations that will be contrary to a good life. In modern society, we are told discrimination itself is bad; hence, we should never make judgments about other people or behaviors. This modern thinking will bring the demise to our prosperous culture.
Applied discernment is a liberator!
We need discernment because modern thinking is setting-up future generations for failure. The family unit itself has become a purveyor of modernism. Two things have come to bear fruit from the baby boomer generation. First, with a lack of authority in the home, children are not given proper guidance and resistance when they get involved in wrong behavior. Second, parents are afraid to direct their children, and even worse, are being guided by them. This is a sign of judgment according to the scripture:
“I will give children to be their princes, And babes shall rule over them. The people will be oppressed, Every one by another and every one by his neighbor; The child will be insolent toward the elder, And the base toward the honorable.” (Isaiah 3:4-5)
Standing in controversy
This past week, there was a great controversy because Indiana passed a law to protect Christians from having to participate in things like gay marriage if it violated their conscience. The governor and legislature stood strong for two days before capitulating to the threats of big business. God told me 30 years ago that the economic beast would rule over the nations and would be a stronger force then the political powers of former days.
Soon after, Arkansas got in the debate claiming they also had a religious freedom law they were passing and stood proudly against the tide for a couple days! Then the governor, a proud conservative, said, “My own son signed a petition against this law and we need to listen to our children and recognize times are changing.”
Maybe we need to rehearse the story of Eli the priest?
For I have told him that I will judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knows, because his sons made themselves vile, and he did not restrain them. 14 And therefore I have sworn to the house of Eli that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be atoned for by sacrifice or offering forever.” (1 Samuel 3:13-14)
We live in very divisive times and it will not always be acceptable to stand with Christ, but God is looking for those that will be courageous and stand with all of Heaven. We need to discern the times and make a stand for righteousness—your children are depending on it!