Saturday, February 17, 2018

The Need for Faithfulness – Our Lawless Age (8)

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The Need for Faithfulness
Our Lawless Age (8)

…and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 2 Thessalonians 2:10

We live in an age of increasing lawlessness, in which “truth” is regarded as relative and personal, morality is mostly a matter of preference, and law is a standard to flex and flux as need be. In this lawless age truth and the Law of God languish (Hab. 1:4), and evil is an idea reserved for only the most heinous of acts.

In such an age, even the Church has come to believe that the Law of God, while very much a part of Scripture, is not all that relevant to the life of faith.

But if men will not acknowledge truth, then nothing can be a prescription for wholeness to meet the need of every human being. This, of course, is what the Gospel claims; but in an age when truth is merely personal and relative, the Gospel is likewise regarded as personally or relatively true. And, since the Gospel, as Jesus taught it, entails unbending moral obligations, most people either choose not to embrace the Gospel or to take it on their own terms. They may profess faith in the Gospel, but their ethics and morality they will imbibe from the spirit of the age, from the pop culture, secular media, and the postmodern academy, so that they regard themselves as the masters of their fates and the captains of their souls.

The mystery of lawlessness is already at work among us, as Paul explained. And it entails the denial of evil and truth as absolute realities, leaving people to fend for themselves in the quest for meaning, purpose, and happiness. The Gospel is just one of many options in a lawless age like ours, and not one that many people will find all that appealing.

Unless, of course, those who embrace the Gospel are somehow able to demonstrate, by their lives and words, that here is truth which conforms to the way the world works, heals the deepest injuries to the human soul, engenders lasting peace and abiding hope, and points the way to a world of true beauty and goodness.

This is the great challenge facing Christians today. Paul was careful to warn the Thessalonians not to stray from the Word of Truth he had taught them (vv. 14, 15), for he knew that a lawless age, an age in flight from God, would ultimately discover its blunder and begin looking for something more substantial to ground its hopes. Only the Christian faith provides such a beacon of goodness and Truth, but it requires faithfulness on our parts if it is to have its full transforming effect.

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In the Gates is a devotional series on the Law of God by Rev. T.M. Moore, editor of the Worldview Church. He serves as dean of the Centurions Program of the Wilberforce Forum and principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He is the author or editor of twenty books, and has contributed chapters to four others. His essays, reviews, articles, papers, and poetry have appeared in dozens of national and international journals, and on a wide range of websites. His most recent books are The Ailbe Psalter and The Ground for Christian Ethics (Waxed Tablet).

Scripture quotations in this article are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, (c) copyright 2001, 2007 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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