Friday, January 27, 2012

When Judgment Comes

When God finally judges this nation, it will not be for the sins of the homosexual community, nor will it be for the women who have had abortions.

When God finally judges America it will be because those who call themselves Christian have been too proud to cry out for mercy on behalf of the poor, the exploited and the oppressed.

How can I say this? Because God says it.

"If my people, who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land." - 2 Chronicles 7:14

Who are God's people? We are. Who are those who are called by His name? Christians. Who must humble themselves and pray and seek the face of God? Us. Not "those sinners" over there. You and me.

Who must turn from their wicked ways? We must.

Looking through the Scriptures I see a disturbing correlation between God's judgment and the way His people treat the poor.

For example, in the Old Testament God says:

"Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy. They were proud and did detestable things in my sight. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen." - Ezekiel 16:49-52

And in the New Testament Jesus says:

“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’

They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’
He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’ Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.” - Matthew 25:41-46

So, it seems to matter to God how we treat the poor.

He's also not very happy about when we withhold fair wages from our workers, or when we exploit people to get rich.

In the Old Testament God says:

“So I will come to put you on trial. I will be quick to testify against sorcerers, adulterers and perjurers, against those who defraud laborers of their wages, who oppress the widows and the fatherless, and deprive the foreigners among you of justice, but do not fear me,” says the LORD Almighty." - Malachi 3:4-6

And in the New Testament the Apostle James says, 
"Look! The wages you failed to pay the workers who mowed your fields are crying out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord Almighty." - James 5:3-5

America has built her success and her wealth in this day and age largely by exploiting the resources of other nations. Our corporations send in economic hit men to coerce third world leaders - either by bribery or through threats - to allow them to exploit their people and their land. If those leaders comply then our corporations get rich at the expense of those living in that nation. If those leaders resist they are assassinated or overthrown with the assistance of these economic hit men.

John Perkins, who used to be one of these hit men before he repented, explains it in vivid detail in the documentary "The End of Poverty?" and you can listen to him yourself at this link HERE>

Our nation presents itself to the world as a Christian Nation. Whether or not this is true - and I'm one of those who would argue that we are not now, nor have we ever been a Christian Nation - it is irrelevant to the fact that we are seen as a nation of Christians. So, for a nation that identifies herself with Christ to exploit the poor in the Name of Jesus we should repent. For a nation that has amassed for herself great wealth while turning a blind eye to the workers at Foxconn who are abused and mistreated we should repent. For a nation that threatens the poorest nations of this world in order to steal their resources and impoverish them further we should fall on our knees and beg for God's mercy.

For judgment will surely come to this nation. Of that I have no doubt. It is not a question of "if" but of "when". Therefore, how should we - those who are called by His Name - respond? We should humble ourselves and seek His face and turn from our wicked ways and beg for God's mercy to fall on us and on our wicked, arrogant, overfed and unconcerned nation.

Like the Church in Laodicea, America is so confident of her great wealth and yet God looks at us and says that we are naked and blind and poor. If we will turn to Him, He will forgive us and heal our land.

When judgement comes, it will not be because of the homosexuals, or the abortionists, but it will come because God's people were not willing to confess their own sins - and the sins of their nation - and humble themselves to ask God for mercy.



Rev. Paul McKay said...

Well put, Keith. I cringe from head to toe every time I hear someone--especially some cynical politician whose faith usually runs a mile wide and an inch deep--assert that America is a "Christian nation."

Anonymous said...

Keith I am with you (and Rev Paul McKay) on the ridiculousness of these assertions. So please hear me heart on this. Is not your argument an exercise in replacement theology (where the church supposedly replaces the nation of Israel In Situ)? RT falls flat so many times and in many ways. Are there not many, many places where Jesus says to love your neighbor and that even Jesus did not come to judge but to love and serve? Cannot your argument be made from a stronger position without RT? I believe it can.

Keith Giles said...

Not sure where you're seeing the Replacement Theology references?