Global war. Economic instability. Mass unemployment. Depopulation. Autonomic and autonomous weaponry. Homosexuality. Persecution.
These are all threats that Christians are facing now and are going to face as trends into the future. While for many years there has been talk of fighting a “culture war,” the reality is that even major Christian denominations admit the culture war is over, and that Christians lost.
The future does not look good for Christians or Christianity. To feel sad, depressed, or upset about it would be a natural response to current events. Even with the recent outpouring of “hope” that President Trump has aroused in so many Christians, it is a false hope because even considering Trump’s good actions, he is perpetuating and intensifying the same policies that lead to the current state of the nation and world that his predecessors followed in and his successors will continue.
Jesus told his disciples not to fear the world because He has overcome the world. However, as Christians are in the world but it is enjoined upon them not to be of the world, how can a Christian best witness his Faith and also prepare for the coming events that we have discussed at length and you can read about in the Shoebat archives?
An answer is found in the philosophy of Judo:
In short, resisting a more powerful opponent will result in your defeat, whilst adjusting to and evading your opponent’s attack will cause him to lose his balance, his power will be reduced, and you will defeat him. This can apply whatever the relative values of power, thus making it possible for weaker opponents to beat significantly stronger ones. (source)
The current time is incomparable with any other period in world history. Never before has there been such an abundance of information so easily available for so many people to access. The idea that somebody could download most books in most languages, instantly translate them if desired, while communicating with people from all parts of the world while sitting in one’s living room drinking a cup of tea in one’s pajamas would be incomprehensible even decades ago. Now, it is able to be a real way of life for many people. It is a beautiful time to be alive.
But with great blessings also comes great responsibilities. The ability to do such things requires of all people regardless of who they are to put forth a genuine effort to learn and grow in accordance with one’s state in life and vocation, educating themselves beyond what they dreamed could ever have been possible.
At the same time, people are also in less control than ever before. With an expanding net of legalities and ways that one can incriminate oneself, be it now or in the future, the ability to speak freely and directly is arguably harder than ever before, and one has to resort to more creative means. This does not even include the financial and industrial sectors, who are more powerful than the governments they operate in and as such rule through the various governments of the world.
So what is a Christian to do?
A Christian is to educate himself, and to prepare himself and his soul for what lies ahead. He has a responsibility to educate himself, to care for himself and his neighbors, to help them but (lacking a strong and morally objective reason to do so) without destroying himself, knowing that all things are made perfect in Christ.
This does not mean to “surrender”. It does not mean to refuse to “stand up” for what is right.
It is to recognize ones abilities and limitations and to act in a productive way that accords with them.
There is a saying that “as goes the Church, such goes the world.” The Church is in disarray, and that moral decay is being reflected in the remilitarization of major world powers that is leading to a third world war, all of which are based on plans constructed by many people over decades of work.
Individual men cannot save the world. The world has already been condemned by God, and His justice will come in time. Even when it comes to helping within the spheres within which one possesses real influence, there is only so much that one can do. The desire do help is good, but barring a major and objective moral reason, help does nobody good if one ceases to function normally. This is the lesson of Vietnam for the USA and Afghanistan for the Soviet Union. Both great empires lost these respective wars not for a lack of power, but through overextending themselves and lacking a clear objective that was attainable within their means.
As the Bible teaches, the war has already been won by Christ. But in spite of this, there will still be those men who, as Wisdom 2 warns, will seek to do evil and pursue the way of power, saying:
But let our strength be our norm of righteousness; for weakness proves itself useless.
While it is important for Christians to “stand” for what is right, when Jesus walked the Earth, He did not lead a revolution or call for force of arms. He called for those who genuinely cared to, in humbleness and meekness that He set as and example, to follow him, for as Isaiah (53:7-12) prophesied:
Though harshly treated, he submitted and did not open his mouth; Like a lamb led to slaughter or a sheep silent before shearers, he did not open his mouth.
Seized and condemned, He was taken away. Who would have thought any more of his destiny? For he was cut off from the land of the living, struck for the sins of his people.
He was given a grave among the wicked, a burial place with evildoers, Though he had done no wrong, nor was deceit found in his mouth.
But it was the LORD’s will to crush him with pain. By making his life as a reparation offering,* he shall see his offspring, shall lengthen his days, and the LORD’s will shall be accomplished through him.
Because of his anguish he shall see the light; because of his knowledge he shall be content; My servant, the just one, shall justify the many, their iniquity he shall bear.
Therefore I will give him his portion among the many, and he shall divide the spoils with the mighty, Because he surrendered himself to death, was counted among the transgressors, Bore the sins of many, and interceded for the transgressors.
Judo, or “gentle way” as it means in Japanese, is perfected none other than by Christ’s example.
So let the social darwinists, the epicureans of the modern age so condemned in the Old and New Testaments, proceed as they have. The system which they have desired has been set up and the entire world is in their control. Yet Christ, the true model of the gentle way, and those who follow him, pursuing in what is right, will eventually find their reward, if not by the defeat of the wicked in this life, then by the joy of final rest with their maker.