POLITICIANS GET A FREE PASS

Why do church leaders excuse lying, adultery, and other serious sins when committed by their political allies?

Early in my Christian walk, I was taught to strive for holiness in every area of life. Sin must not be tolerated in thought, word, or deed. “Do not evil that good may come!”  As a disciple of Jesus, I was to live “separate” from the fallen world, not physically, but spiritually and morally. His follower must not be “unequally yoked together” with sinners.

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THE NERONIAN DILEMMA

God allows evil rulers to govern us and uses them to accomplish His plans, but He also calls us to show them due respect and obedience.

Paul exhorted Christians residing in the heart of the Empire to respect governors and magistrates, to obey the emperor, and to pay their taxes. Existing authorities “have been arranged by God,” therefore, anyone who opposes the government is opposing “the arrangement of God.” That he stated this about the Roman government raises a dilemma for many of us.

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SMALL THINGS MATTER

Before he left the Temple for the last time, Jesus observed an impoverished widow depositing “two mites” into the treasury. In contrast to many that day, she had “cast in all that she had,” which, in his estimate, was worth far more than what the others had contributed. Apparently, Jesus assigns values to actions rather differently than we do.

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LAWLESSNESS IS UNDERWAY

Already, the “mystery of lawlessness” and the “spirit of Antichrist” are preparing the way for the arrival of the “lawless one.”

Jesus warned of coming “tribulations” that will cause many to “stumble” and apostatize. Moreover, “many false prophets” will arise to “deceive many,” and because “lawlessness will multiple,” the “love of the many will grow cold.” And these “false prophets and false christs” will employ “signs and wonders” to mislead “the elect,” for apostasy is their end game.

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DISINFORMATION CAMPAIGNS

Just as occurred in Thessalonica, deceivers continue to propagate false information about the imminence of key apocalyptic events.

In the church at Thessalonica, claims that the “Day of the Lord had set in” were disrupting the congregation, and apparently, someone attributed them to Paul (“as if from us”). In response, he warned believers not to be “troubled” by such false expectations, for the “Day of the Lord” will not come before the arrival of the “lawless one” and the “apostasy.”

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