Once there was a nation known as Yugoslavia. Near the end of it’s existence we visited it. Although a fascinating country, our visit was marred by a sense the people were filled with bitterness, resentment and resignation that something bad was about to happen. We didn’t realize it but they were a people preparing for war. Skip ahead to 2012. We had lived 20 years as residents of Japan but were now returning to the US. Sadly, we found the same foul spirit we had sensed in Yugoslavia operating in the United States. Even many of the Christians we knew and fellowshipped were affected by that spirit.
Where love, hope and patience ought to predominated we fond resentment, fear and aggression. We soon realized these ugly emotions were fueled by a steady diet of conspiracy theories, prejudice, half-truths and outright lies dispersed by pseudo-Christian commentators. They claimed special knowledge of hidden truths when all they really had was subjective opinions and feelings. These people dismissed fact checking and rules of evidence accepted since the time of the Greeks. Where Jesus said to trust God, they promoted a human champion who echoed their destructive narrative. Where the word of God said to wait and pray, they demanded immediate action. Where the word of God said to submit to the ruling authorities, they applauded sedition and insurrection. In the end it led to an attempt to subvert the 2020 election and the Constitution of the United States.
Christians need to toss off the false prophets and manipulative dissemblers who seeded the ground for the 2020 sacking of the US Capitol. Otherwise we will become participants in a failed state such as Syria and the former Yugoslavia became. We can avoid that fate. Turn off the radio, turn off the TV. Shut down the computer. Get rid of that book written by an angry conspiracy theorist. Go back to Jesus. Relearn the greatest of all laws: love God with all our heart, soul and might and love other types of people as we love our own type. It won’t be easy; living by the rule of love never is easy. But if we are able to do this we will live as children of our heavenly Father and as obedient citizens of the Kingdom of God!