My new avatar is a picture of an ancient boundary stone. Boundary stones were placed to show ownership borders or the limits of property one had authority over. God instructs us in Proverbs 22 & 23 not to move ancient boundary stones. Our current secular, liberal and godless society is knocking down and pushing boundaries on countless fronts. This pushing back or ignoring of boundaries by the world is actually to be expected, is nothing new and has been a repeating occurrence in societies throughout history. And although many societies have traveled far down the pathways leading away from scriptural principals and boundaries I believe there is a significant difference in 2014. The difference is not among the un-churched and secular society but is instead right in the midst of the intended guardian of those ancient boundaries – the church.
What’s the difference? By that I mean what is the difference between the community of Christ and the community of Satan and the world. I say it that way because there really is, from a Biblical perspective, only two realms and there is supposed to be clear boundaries between the two. We are called out to be dedicated for the work of the kingdom. We are not called to be different for difference sake but rather for the purpose partnering with the Father in the redemption of the world.
We should not be surprised when the world challenges the boundaries of gossip, marriage, modesty, sexual orientation and integrity. They either don’t care or more likely are simply unaware of the placement of God’s boundary stones. But we in the church do not have the luxury of using that excuse. When clearly indicated moral boundaries are challenged in the church it is the church’s responsibility to hold fast and defend those borders. Some may ask why. It’s really very simple and I will use physical borders as an illustration. Imagine if one morning we woke up and Canada had pushed its southern border down to encompass several northern states. And then the next morning Mexico pushed its northern border up to capture Texas and New Mexico. If the US did not push back and regain that property then we have conceded defeat in that area and have lost ground from what was previously American property.
When that happens in the spiritual realm, it means areas that were once holy ground have become Satan’s property. In short, Satan is gaining ground in the church without firing a shot by the simple means of placing social and political pressure on the church to give up ground for peace. Let me use another metaphor. Israel has been pressured over the past ½ century to give up land with the promise that they would have peace. How’s that working for Israel? The church is giving ground on many fronts with the presumed result that secular society will then like us and appreciate how ”understanding and companionate” we have been. But all we have really accomplished is to give Satan more ownership and authority within the very walls and people of the church.
Please understand, the world is going to hate us no matter what we do. It’s one of those promises in scripture that we don’t like and would prefer to ignore in hopes that maybe God wasn’t telling the truth. But alas, God is no liar; the world still hates us and will only continue to hate us more until we have become indistinguishable from them so I ask again, if there is no difference between the church and the world then what’s the difference?