Are You Being Silenced?
As an American citizen, I realize that I have taken many freedoms for granted. Freedom of speech, the freedom to practice any religion that I choose, the freedom to work in any job that I might be qualified for, the freedom to travel anywhere in the world, and the opportunity to become successful in my career pursuits if I put my mind to it. These are all tangible, things that we can see and experience. I am incredibly grateful to be an American, and I know that there are a couple hundred million others who feel the same way. The year 2020 was a true wake up call for millions of us who have lived long enough to recognize the danger that our country and our freedoms are in currently.
The type of freedom that is granted to us by a human government is incredibly fragile, and never have I been more aware of that than I am today. Freedom of speech is widely censored, religious gatherings have been unjustly targeted by numerous state governors, people have lost their jobs for admitting that they love their country, and travel remains tenuous as I write out this blog. Thousands of Americans are kept from pursuing a good education and working toward financial stability as large groups of hate-filled individuals abuse their power to keep others who believe in traditional family values and appreciate what America has to offer are abruptly “cancelled” out, as if they are refuse that needs to be thrown out.
There is little to no respect for human dignity as large groups of masked men and women wearing black, viciously and strategically target and relentlessly attack women, children, and the elderly who dare to voice their concerns for the state of this country and their love for the Judeo-Christian God. The vitriolic hate speech spewing from the corporate media for the past four years has been deafening and hundreds of thousands of our young adults have been negatively swayed by the brainwashing techniques used by all types of media. This mass confusion and militant animosity toward traditional values and respect for others is nothing new to the forces of evil. Many Christians clearly recognize the distinct marks of mass spiritual warfare, especially those from countries where there is no religious liberty, nor is there freedom of the discourse of differing ideas, as voices for traditional family values and fairness are censored and de-platformed one after another.
Those of us who are familiar with Scripture, know all too well that Satan is the author of confusion and the father of lies (John 8:44). That is what we are witnessing today, mass confusion and the perpetuation of lies upon lies. The presence of perpetual lies not only causes confusion, but they also cause distrust. Lies trigger distrust of others, which then inevitably causes hatred for those who seem to pose a threat to one’s ideologies and way of life or desired way of life. Witnessing all of the turmoil and uncertainty that America is facing at this moment in time, I cannot help but to think of the twentieth century theologian and scholar, Dietrich Bonhoeffer. He, faced the same type of deceptive tactics and religious persecution of Nazi Germany during the reign of Adolf Hitler, that we are witnessing in America.
The one thing that we know for sure, is that freedom is not free and that the freedom that humankind offers is a volatile proposition at best. Conversely, the freedom offered by the Judeo-Christian God (the one true God) is everlasting and stable. There is no deception in the things of God. Christians need to be more aware than ever before of the deceptive tactics of the enemy. The Creator of the universe created humanity to be free. He has given us free will to make our own decisions (right or wrong). For those who accept His offer of redemption (1Cor.1:2), he has given the freedom that comes from refusing to be under the influence of the bondage of sin. This is true freedom, to know the difference between right and wrong and to not be held captive by behaviors or lifestyles that will inevitably bring us harm.
God’s offer of true freedom is certainly liberating, but like the volatility of the freedom that humankind has to offer, it is also not free. True freedom will cost you everything. You cannot understand true freedom until you come to know the God of the Bible and surrender your will to his. I am not advocating for, nor am I suggesting a works-based faith. On the contrary, I am pointing out the historical reality based on the character and nature of an ultimate Being who knows exactly how we are designed to live. His relationship with humanity is a continual quest for our focus and understanding of who He is. It is not until we understand the God of Israel that we will understand who we are as humankind, created in His image.
True freedom requires a comprehension of who God truly is, and this can only be achieved by the study of the Judeo-Christian Bible. In the Hebrew scriptures, the offerings for peace with God were the most costly of all of the offerings listed (Num. 7:1 - 88). You will also find that the New Testament is replete with messages from Jesus about how valuable a relationship with the Creator truly is (Matt. 13:44; John 14:15). The value system of the world is vastly different from what Christians should be focused on as we are not to become so entangled with the ways of this world that we become weighed down by sin, fear, and hate.
This is not a time for division or divisive language, Christians must stand together to weather the oncoming storms. The enemy wants nothing more than to distract, divide, and destroy the hands and feet of Christ (1Pet. 5:8). It is time for action in rightly spreading the word of God that will bring everlasting life to those who accept it. At this time in American history, many people are in fear and are rightly confused. Christians need to be ready with the reality of Christ who gives life using the words of the Judeo-Christian God (Eph. 6:10-18). It is imperative that we never forge to stand strong and never compromise.