When Facing Down Lions

The story of Daniel in the lion’s den is a story most children remember because it proves that despite the danger Daniel was in, God came to his rescue. Fast forward to today, where I think we live in a dangerous world … even more so than in past generations. For example, during most world wars we understood who the enemy was … they were identified and there was no question who and what we were fighting. Today the enemies are much more hidden. You are never sure who is an enemy and who is not.

We do know that there will come a day when Christians will no longer be seen as the good guys and our beliefs will be seen as counterproductive to the agenda that most of society will be following. What I think has saved us thus far has been our involvement in caring for the poor and the history of us having a socially active presence in almost every case where human need is being experienced. That, however, will change.

A friend of mine heads up a non-profit that feeds about 14,000 people per month in our community. Some colleagues and partners recently pulled their support because the name of his organization was offensive to them. It was cancel culture at its best. This is the mentality that is pervasive now in our society where if you don’t comply with my standards of thinking and my agenda, we can no longer be in any kind of relationship. It would be like someone saying we cannot support the Salvation Army because its name implies a religious army, so no matter what good the Salvation Army does, it’s not enough to overcome the stigma of their name. Or, how about the Red Cross? Should we stop our support of such an organization that has been around for 139 years because their name could prove to be a problem for some?

My point is simple. As Christians whose faith in God sets the course of our lives, we will be the focal point of tense debate. If we decide to stand on the principles of Scripture, we will be at odds with most of society. People will no longer accept the Bible as anything other than a biased, homophobic, racist book that enslaves people to a belief structure that is out of step with society. Jesus told us we would experience persecution, but most of us think that it would happen everywhere else other than our neighborhood. Will we face a lion’s den in our lifetime? Will we be placed on a list where people will be warned against our beliefs and against our practices of gaining acceptance with good deeds? This is why I suggest that our good deeds will be seen not as a good service to humanity, but as a means to convince people to join our false religion called Christianity.

The lion’s den will be a reality for some of us. If you take a stand against the cancel culture or the Black Lives Matter folks, you might as well sign up for a stent in the lion’s den of public opinion. If public opinion goes against you, you will be ostracized as someone who shouldn’t be listened to. I personally resent the fact that I cannot share an opinion that may not support the common causes of our day. Why? Because most of them defy God’s laws and commandments and are demonic in nature. They support human expression in any manner as your right because it is the highest form of our human experience to be yourself in its entire immoral splendor. They say, “be who you are” and “do as you please” because it is your ‘right’. There is one problem with this thinking, and that is your right can and does affect others. No one lives in a bubble. What we allow in society will affect everyone in that society. For example, we are on the verge of passing legislation to make marijuana recreationally legal. The boomers who smoked marijuana over the years are delighted, yet they fail to realize that we will be passing another drug that will affect all of us on the highways. We already have a crisis of inebriated drivers on the road and we will just increase that number if this legislation passes. As a former user of marijuana, I am not in favor of more drugs being used for recreational use. Don’t we have enough problems with alcohol?

Where is the wisdom in any of this? Wisdom always loses out on the demand for human entertainment and expression. It is not popular to bring up persecution because it’s not a topic anyone wants to address. Yet, in light of what Scripture teaches about the last days, it seems there will be lion dens again.

2 Timothy 3:12 Yes, and everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.

John 15 18If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. 19If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. 20Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also.

Persecution in any form is a lion’s den in my book. However, I want you to remember that you may not escape the lion’s den, but you will be protected against them. Do not fear, and do not stop standing up for truth. It will create trouble for you, but you will know in your heart that you are standing up for God. You will not be disappointed when you do that.

1 Samuel 2:30 But I will honor those who honor me, and I will despise those who think lightly of me.

Challenging the Culture with Truth … Larry Kutzler