By Andy Alexander
The United States was once a good nation as far as morality was concerned, but sadly, it is now quickly becoming a nation like so many of the heathen nations that have gone before. The institution of marriage was respected by most of the citizens of this country. The sin of homosexuality was unheard of except in rare instances. Abortion and single parenting were equally non-existent. Gambling was looked on as an evil and only the basest of people engaged in this vice. This is not to say that we were a totally pure country, but sin was not glorified, glamorized, and condoned by the majority of the people. Now, it is different. What has happened?
Sinners do not remain in a static state. We either repent and get better day by day as we let God’s word work in our lives, or we continue to live in sin and wax worse and worse as Paul told Timothy. “But evil men and women shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived” (2 Tim. 3:13). This seems to be the case in our nation today. People in this land seem to be less sensitive to sin than ever before. We are tolerating things that our forefathers would have never dreamed of tolerating.
The Bible has been banned from the public schools. Homosexuals are paraded before us daily and we are told that their lifestyle is perfectly acceptable and moral. Gutter language has become the norm, even among the very young. The government has resorted to gambling as a means of sponsoring their many social programs which only encourage more slothfulness. Drunkenness and sexual promiscuity are at an all-time high among young people and no end is in sight.
In a recent television interview a cheerleader from the Hempstead High School cheerleading squad in Hempstead, Texas was pointing out that cheerleaders were still good role models for children, even though four of her squad mates had recently become pregnant and had to be dismissed from the squad. However, one was reinstated after she aborted her baby. The mentality that says an immodestly dressed girl, gyrating in lewd suggestive ways is a good role model illustrates the dearth of Bible knowledge throughout this land (Gal. 5:19-21; 1 Tim. 2:9-10). And, the fact that some Christians condone this activity is also a sign of Bible illiteracy and rebellion among the people of God.
Our nation seeks to glorify sin and make it more and more respectable. Government, the news media, television, movies, videos, schools, and sports are some of the avenues in which sin is glorified in our nation. This campaign has worked and many Christians have caved in to the idea that nothing can be done.
As Christians, we not only glorify sin when we allow our children to participate in activities such as cheerleading, but when we let them or encourage them to participate in any ungodly activity; or, when we ourselves engage in worldly practices, we are helping to glorify sin. Going to the local movie theater or renting videos to watch at home in which cursing, murder, nudity, and sexual permissiveness are not only endorsed but also glorified is another way in which we, as Christians, can be helping to promote these sinful activities. Remember what Paul said when he was exhorting the Ephesian brethren to walk in the light, “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them” (Eph. 5:11). Can these practices be any-thing other than “unfruitful works of darkness”?
When we participate in sinful worldly activities, we help to legitimize that activity in the eyes of the world. We could term this “acceptable worldliness.” It is acceptable in the eyes of the world and some worldly-minded Christians, but it is not acceptable in the eyes of our Creator and Judge (Jas. 4:4). False teaching on marriage, divorce, and remarriage and acceptance of those who teach this error by supposedly sound congregations is another instance where sin is made to appear respectable. Adultery is one of the foremost causes for the moral decline of our nation and the church which does not teach and uphold the doctrine of Christ in this realm is helping to glorify this sin among those whom they have the ability to influence.
Social drinking, mixed swimming, immodest apparel worn at sporting events, gambling, and filthy, suggestive language are other areas where Christians are being tempted to glorify sin. We must not lend support to the devil and his cause by participating in these or any other ungodly practice. We are to be lights in the world so that others may see our good works and glorify God who is in heaven (Matt. 5:16).
We, as God’s people, can stand up and oppose the onward march of Satan. We can teach our children and set the proper example before them (Eph. 6:4; Tit. 2:6-7). We can learn what they are being taught in school and counter-act the sinful teaching with the mighty word of God (2 Cor. 10:3-5). We can restrict them; not allow them to participate in sinful activities such as cheerleading and attendance at the school dances (Gen. 18:19; Josh. 24:15). We can be the pillar and support of the truth that we are to be as the children of God (1 Tim. 3:15). We can vote for candidates who, to the best of our knowledge, uphold the high standards of morality as taught in God’s word (Rom. 13:3-4). The moral health of our country is far more important than the physical health which is being discussed so much in the news of our day (Prov. 14:34). This moral health will only improve as we improve ourselves individually in the eyes of God.
Our teaching at home, in the Bible classes, and from the pulpit should contain practical application that can be easily understood by the audience. Principles from God’s word must be plainly taught so that the practical application will have a sure foundation to rest upon. However, without clear, understandable application, many will not get the message. Preaching against lasciviousness is good, but without application that points to the local school dance, mixed swimming pool, gymnastic attire, or other forms of immodest clothing, some of the listeners will not receive the message. We, as teachers, must give the brethren something that they can take home and put to use.
Sin is indeed glorified by many in this land, but we must not become discouraged. A more determined spirit to combat Satan is needed. We can win the battle and help to save others in the process. Let us heed the advice of Paul when he exhorted Timothy to, “Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee” (1 Tim. 4:16).
Guardian of Truth XXXVIII: 14, p. 19-20
July 21, 1994