Revival vs. Revolution
Which Will It Be?
Our beloved nation is in the midst of what appears to be “The Perfect Storm.” First came the pandemic, then the stock market crash followed by the collapse of our economy. And now, violence and looting in our streets. Radicals of all types and colors are calling for revolution.
The Judeo-Christian values this nation was founded upon have been rejected. We are waving our collective fist at God and His Word, saying, “We will do as we please.” It appears that God has turned us over to what theologians call “abandonment wrath.” That’s when God steps back, lowers His hedge of protection around a nation and allows sins to multiply.
An Unfounded Hope?
One thing I have noticed in the midst of all the chaos is that several Evangelical leaders whom I greatly respect have proclaimed their belief that the frightening events all around us will drive people to their knees seeking God, and the result will be a great spiritual revival that will bring our nation back to God. I hope they are right, but I personally believe it is a false hope.
They have based their hope on what has happened in America in the past. Each of these Christian leaders have pointed to the fact that our nation has grown cold in the Lord several times in the past, and each time people were driven to prayer, and the result was a great spiritual revival.
These revivals have usually been referred to as “Great Awakenings,” each of which lasted several years. The first began in 1730, the second in 1800, the third in 1890 and the final one in the late 1960s.
The problem with this argument is that our nation has not simply grown cold in the Lord. During the past 60 years, we have become militantly hostile to God and His Word. Today, we are aggressively mocking and blaspheming God, and we are jettisoning our Christian heritage.
The number of people in our nation claiming to be Christian is at an all time low (65%). And half of those could most likely be classified as “Cultural Christians,” meaning they are Christians in name only. Recent polls by the Pew Research Center have revealed that only 17% of those who claim to be Christian can be classified as “Bible-believing.” Meanwhile, weekly church attendance has plummeted to its lowest point ever (23%).
The Point of No Return
Our nation has clearly become a secular, pagan nation that has rejected God. What a tragic development this is! We have cast aside the very One who blessed us with unparalleled freedom and prosperity. And the Scriptures clearly reveal what our future will be because the history of Judah shows how God deals with a rebellious nation which He has so richly blessed:
1) He raises up prophetic voices to call the nation to repentance. And, if there is no repentance, 2) He places remedial judgments upon the nation. 3) If the nation repents, He forgives and blesses. But if there is no repentance, 4) God destroys the nation when its rebellion becomes entrenched, reaching a point of no return.
Yes, the Bible teaches that there is a point of no return when a nation turns its back on God, particularly a nation that God has richly blessed. That point is referred to in the Scriptures as the stage in a nation’s revolt when “the wound becomes incurable.”
Jeremiah declared that Judah had “an incurable wound” (Jeremiah 30:12). Jeremiah was even told to stop praying for Judah. (Jeremiah 7:16). Ezekiel was told the same thing, but in even stronger terms. Ezekiel was told that if the most righteous men who have ever lived — Noah, Daniel and Job — were to intervene for Judah, it would be of no avail, except for themselves and their families, because the nation had reached the point of no return and was going to be destroyed (Ezekiel 14:12-21).
People laughed at the warnings Jeremiah gave. Their response was to chant, “The temple, the temple, the temple.” This chant meant that they did not believe that God would ever allow anyone to destroy His temple, regardless of how sinful the nation might become. But God sent the Babylonians and used them as His hammer to destroy the nation of Judah, its capital city of Jerusalem and the temple.
Two of the saddest verses in the Bible describe Judah’s destruction. They are found in 2 Chronicles 36:
15) The LORD, the God of their fathers, sent word to them again and again by His messengers, because He had compassion on His people and on His dwelling place; 16) but they continually mocked the messengers of God, despised His words and scoffed at His prophets, until the wrath of the LORD arose against His people, until there was no remedy.
Even when dealing with the evil Assyrian Empire, God sent Jonah to warn of His impending wrath. When the king and his people repented, God withheld His wrath. But 150 years later, when God sent a second prophet, Nahum, the message was, “Your wound is incurable.” That time there was no repentance, and the empire was overthrown by the Babylonians.
All of which reminds me of some words of the prophet Nahum that should be sobering to our nation (Nahum 1):
2) A jealous and avenging God is the LORD; The LORD is avenging and wrathful. The LORD takes vengeance on His adversaries, And He reserves wrath for His enemies. 3) The LORD is slow to anger and great in power, And the LORD will by no means leave the guilty unpunished.
Application to America
Now, let’s apply these principles to the United States. As I have pointed out many times before, I believe God raised up this nation with the purpose of using our great natural resources and technical ingenuity to spread the Gospel all over the world.
As we fulfilled His purpose, He poured out blessings upon us — blessings like unparalleled freedom and prosperity and immense power and worldwide influence. He even gave us the blessing of serving as the key nation in the rebirthing and nurturing of the nation of Israel.
But, like ancient Judah, we became enamored with our wealth and power, and we began turning our back on God.
- The Almighty Dollar became our god.
- Greed became our motivator.
- Gambling became a national pastime.
- Sex became our obsession.
- We became the world’s largest consumer of illegal drugs.
- We kicked God out of our schools.
- We legalized abortion.
- We endorsed homosexuality and same-sex marriage.
- And we became the moral polluter of planet earth through our violent, immoral and blasphemous movies and television programs.
As we wallowed in the sexual revolution of the 1960s, God began raising up prophetic voices like Dave Wilkerson, calling this nation to repentance. And in the years since that time, he has raised up many more prophetic voices, 13 of which I identify in my book, God’s Prophetic Voices to America. When we refused to repent, the remedial judgments began to fall:
- The Vietnam War which occurred on the heels of the sexual revolution of the 1960s.
- The 9/11 Attacks (2001) — God allowed the terrorists to be successful in attacking the two symbols of our pride: The Twin Towers in New York, which represented our wealth; and the Pentagon in Washington, DC, which represented our power.
- Hurricane Katrina (2005) — Undoubtedly God’s response to our immorality and our forcing Israel to abandon the Gaza Strip. The storm formed in the Gulf on the last day of the Gaza Strip withdrawal and hit New Orleans as it was getting ready to host its annual homosexual festival.
- The September 2008 Stock Market Crash — Again, a response to our attempts to strong-arm Israel into surrendering its heartland. It occurred on the eve of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, and the market fell by 777 points — indicating the signature of God.
- The Election of Barack Obama (2008) — God gave us the kind of leader we deserved — a man who was the most pro-abortion, pro-homosexual, anti-Capitalist, anti-Israel leader in the entire history of our nation.
- “The Perfect Storm” of 2020 — A pandemic combined with a stock market crash, the collapse of our economy and pandemonium in the streets.
The Decay of Society
Let me take a moment to emphasize to you how serious the decay of our society has become. Only a person my age can appreciate how radically and how quickly our society has disintegrated.
I was born in 1938 when autos still had running boards and gasoline was 20 cents a gallon. When I was born…
- Abortionists were sent to prison.
- Pregnancy out of wedlock was thought of as scandalous.
- Homosexuality was considered unnatural and immoral.
- Pornography was despised as a sexual perversion.
- Drugs were something you bought at a drug store.
- Marriage was sacred.
- Living together was taboo.
- Divorce was a disgrace.
- Same-sex marriage was beyond even the wildest and most depraved imagination.
- Homemaking was honored, and daycare was provided by mothers in their homes.
- Child abuse was almost unheard of.
- Ladies did not curse or smoke.
- The word, “damn,” was considered flagrant language in a movie.
The first major motion picture to use a curse word was Gone with the Wind in 1939. The movie ended with the phrase, “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.” In 2013 a film called The Wolf of Wall Street, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, had the “f-word” in it 544 times in 180 minutes!
In 1997, the veteran television star, Steve Allen, denounced the growing filth in movies and television by saying, “We have become a society where vulgarians entertain barbarians.” And that was over 20 years ago!
A Temporary Respite
It is true that in His grace and mercy, God has given us a temporary respite — a window of grace through the miraculous election of Donald Trump in 2016.
I think it is very interesting that back in 1980 when Ronald Reagan was elected, Francis Shaeffer, one of God’s prophetic voices to America, referred to Reagan’s election as a “window of grace” from God, and it was.
But as soon as his term ended in 1989, our society took up where it had left off in its rejection of Judeo-Christian values and proceeded in its downward spiral into the secular, pagan pit of Humanism.
President Trump was elected on a platform proclaiming that he would “Make America Great Again.” After his election, I said several times that we could not count on his doing so. I said that because I emphasized that no one could make our nation great again as long as we continued in our outright rebellion against God and His Word.
Our nation, like Judah, has gone too far in its rejection of God. I believe our wound is incurable. The election of Trump is not a portent of our future. And I can prove that with four brutal facts. After eight years of the most ungodly administration in American history:
1) President Obama left office with a 60% approval rating. 2) His designated heir, Hillary Clinton, received 3 million more votes than Trump. 3) Our nation’s future — the Millennials (18 to 29 year olds) — supported an out-and-out Socialist, and when he failed to get the nomination, they voted overwhelmingly for Clinton. 4) Most important, the ignorance of God’s Word has come to characterize both our nation and professing Christians.
This ignorance is reflected in the latest polls conducted by the Barna Association which show that only 9% of Americans can be characterized as Bible-believing. And even more shocking, only 17% of professing Christians are truly Bible-believing.
And what determines a Bible-believing Christian? Answers to the following six questions:
1) Does absolute moral truth exist? 2) Is the Bible totally accurate in all of the principles it teaches? 3) Is Satan a real being and not simply a symbolic force? 4) Can people earn their way into Heaven by doing good works? 5) Did Jesus live a sinless life? 6) Is God the all-knowing, all-powerful creator of the world who still rules the universe today?
Again, only 9% of Americans can answer these questions biblically, and only 17% of professing Christians can do so.
Is it any wonder that a recent national poll by the George Barna’s American Culture and Faith Institute revealed that: 77% of Americans believe divorce is acceptable; 71% believe sexual intercourse between unmarried adults is okay; 69% believe there is nothing wrong in having a baby outside of marriage; 58% believe viewing pornography is acceptable.
Or, consider what public opinion polls are showing regarding same-sex marriage. Acceptance of the abomination of same-sex “marriage” has increased rapidly from 37% in 2007 to 67% in 2018. The latest 2018 poll showed there is only one state left in the Union where a majority of people oppose same-sex marriage — Alabama!
Our nation needs to wake-up to the fact that legalizing an abomination does not make it moral. Here’s how one organization has put it:
“Legality does not equal Morality. Slavery was wrong, when it was legal. Abortion is wrong, even though it is legal. Gay ‘marriage’ is wrong, even though it’s legal.”
The Triumph of Humanism
My friends, we need to face up to the fact that we have lost the culture war. Humanism has triumphed. We are now a nation begging God to deliver us from judgment to destruction.
If President Trump is succeeded by another radical liberal supported by a radical liberal Congress, the turnaround will be swift and breathtaking:
- All of Trump’s executive orders in accordance with Judeo-Christian principles will be reversed overnight.
- The 2nd Amendment will come under concerted attack.
- Abortion, euthanasia and infanticide will be promoted.
- Hate speech legislation will be broadened to prevent people from speaking out against the Sexual Perversion Movement and abortion.
- Israel will be abandoned.
- Expressions of Christianity will be confined to church buildings.
People say, “But the Supreme Court will stand as a wall against the tide of paganism and secularism.” My response is “Don’t count on it.”
A radical President with a supporting Congress can undercut the Court by passing legislation to increase the number of members from 9 to 11 and to allow for additional appointments for each judge who stays on the court beyond the age of 70.
What most people forget, or don’t know, is that six times in American history, Congress has changed the size of the Supreme Court by either increasing or decreasing the number of justices — each time for political reasons.
Our Constitution does not specify the number of judges. The Court began with 6 judges. It was increased to 7 in 1807 and to 9 in 1837. It was further increased to 10 members in 1863 and then reduced to 7 in 1866 to prevent President Andrew Johnson from making any appointments. The current size of 9 was set in 1864.
Furthermore, as recent decisions of the Court are proving once again, you can never tell for sure how a justice will vote once he is appointed to the Court. The trend throughout modern history has been for conservative justices to become liberal, as is the current situation with Chief Justice John Roberts.
The Warning of Romans 1
I think Romans chapter 1 makes it crystal clear that the fate of our nation is sealed. It says that the wrath of God is called down from Heaven by: ungodliness, unrighteousness, suppression of the truth and worship of the creation rather than the Creator.
Well, that’s exactly where we are in our nation’s history. We are practicing ungodliness as we kick God out of our schools and all aspects of our public life. We are practicing unrighteousness in our daily murder of babies. We are suppressing the truth of the origin of the universe and of life through our teaching of the lie of evolution, and we are worshiping the creation rather than the Creator.
Romans 1 tells us how God responds to this kind of rebellion against Him and His Word. He steps back and lowers the nation’s hedge of protection, allowing evil to multiply. And the results are:
1) A sexual revolution — which occurred in our nation in the 1960s (Romans 1:24-25). 2) A plague of homosexuality — which followed in the 1980s and 90s (Romans 1:26-27). 3) The society being delivered over to a depraved mind — which is where we are today (Romans 1:28-32).
What else but depravity of mind could explain our nation’s celebration over the Supreme Court’s decision to legalize same-sex marriage? President Obama even had the audacity to light up the exterior of the White House with the colors of the Sexual Perversion Movement.
As we celebrated, God must have wept.
I have no doubt that we signed our nation’s death warrant on June 26, 2015 when our Supreme Court rendered its despicable, ungodly decision.
Nor are we alone. Europe has also rejected Christianity. And Christians are being persecuted and slaughtered worldwide.
Our world is a ticking time bomb.
And one of the greatest tragedies is that the average person is just going about his normal business as if nothing is wrong, oblivious to the fact that the wrath of God is about to be poured out.
Is there any hope for our nation? I do not believe so. But we should not despair for several reasons.
First, what we are experiencing is a fulfillment of end-time prophecy. The biblical prophets, including Jesus Himself, all prophesied that in the end-times, society would disintegrate into violence and immorality — that it would become as evil as in the days of Noah — and that people would go about their business as if everything was normal. That is exactly where we are today.
And thus, we are witnesses to the very signs that are heralding the soon return of Jesus. This is why the great pastor, Adrian Rogers, once said, “The world is growing gloriously dark.” Or, as Jan Markell likes to put it: “The world is not falling to pieces; rather, the pieces are all falling into place.”
The second reason we should not despair is because there is individual hope. For those of us who are believers. God has promised that He will never forsake us.
A third reason we should not despair is because of what God is doing in Heaven right now. The Bible says in Psalm 2 that while all the political leaders of the world conspire against Him, His Word and His Son, our Creator sits on His throne and laughs. He is not laughing because He does not care. Oh no! He is laughing because He has the wisdom and power to orchestrate all the evil of Mankind and Satan to the triumph of His will in history.
And don’t forget, we have a fourth reason for hope. We have the incredible hope of the Rapture.
There is also hope for unbelievers. As the pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas, Robert Jeffress, likes to put it: “When the darkness deepens, the light of Jesus will shine more brightly, like a diamond on a black cloth, and more and more people will be drawn to Jesus and be saved.”
Meanwhile, as the darkness deepens, those of us who are believers must serve as salt and light, standing for God and His Word and refusing to give in to the demands of a pagan society, regardless of the cost.
We must be beacons of hope, pointing people to the God of hope while urging them to put their hope in their only hope — Jesus, the Son of God and the soon returning King of kings and Lord of lords.