I hear it. I read it. I sense it.
I don't think I've ever seen in my lifetime such fear grip so many Christian folks in my own land. Fear of what the world is coming to. Fear of losing the culture war. Fear that looks for the magical point in the past where society went wrong.
I've seen Gay marriage blamed on Abortion... wait... no, it's the hippies... wait, no, it's the pill. If only we could fix this social ill then.... Then what? The Culture War would still be lost... as it was in the Roaring Twenties, as it was in the Gay (other usage) 90s. Just as it has been time and time again. Just as it was in the time of the judges.
There is no quick fix. The world is very evil. Children forsake the ways of their fathers, hearts grow cold.
So. Why are you so afraid?
It's actually the great question that Jesus asks of the Disciples in Mark 4. The Disciples had seen the fallen state of the world - they saw it in giant waves and rushing winds (which frankly were much more immediately perilous to them than... what, Bob and Steve maybe possibly suing a church, or maybe losing our tax exemption. I mean, neither of those involve drowning). And they freaked out.
And Jesus takes care of things, and He asks them why they were so afraid. Have you yet no faith?
When we see chaos and disorder, what do we turn to? Do we start bailing water more quickly on the floundering society? Do we craft better laws, thinking that we can thrive where the Pharisees fell? Do we think that we will somehow be shrewder than the sons of this world (here's a hint - we need pithy and feel-good hashtags like "lovewins")?
Or do we look to Christ? Do we see that in this boat, in this ark of the Church stands God Almighty Himself, the Ruler of wind and wave? Do we see Christ the Crucified, who has declared that it is finished, that we are redeemed? Do we see the Risen One, in Whom we know we will rise?
Or do we see fear, and our own vain efforts to cope the with the world, to make it more docile, more tame - to make the wild hordes ladies and gentlemen again (as though that would save any of them from death!)?
Why are we so afraid?
I'm reminded of Revelation 2, the letter to Ephesus, where Jesus says, " But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. 5 Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first." What must we be doing to be doing the works of God? Not winning elections, not winning a culture for Christ - we believe in the One whom God the Father sent.
Remember when we Lutherans were the church that focused on Justification? When we thought that AC IV was the article upon which the Church stood or fell - not society? Remember when we were bold and determined to know nothing among the world except Christ and Him Crucified and could boldly sing, "And take they our life, goods, fame, child or wife? Though these all be gone, they yet have nothing won - the Kingdom ours remaineth."
And now we quiver because we might, MIGHT, lose a tax exemption down the road. God be merciful to us in our weak faith and unbelief!
Come, let us fix our eyes upon Jesus, the Author and Perfector of our faith!