One of the difficulties, currently, with living at the end of the age is how that paradigm has shifted the nature of my ministry. It has taken a course that I never could have anticipated when I began to explore and study what the Bible says about the end-times years ago. I am now, at times, given to what I distrust about those who preach about the dangers of global warming. I am an alarmist. I find that I have (according to what I believe is the grace of God to do so) retrained my mind to hear and perceive that which is going on around me differently than when I was younger. I believe, with great conviction, that when one gives themselves to a focused and biblical study of where history is going, one has a better chance of identifying the factors today that will contribute to the end of the story. Thus I endeavor to be a biblically informed alarmist.
In that I took note during the recent discussion when the word “consensus” emerged. I understood the context - scientific consensus is a powerful weapon in an argument. Few want to be listed in the annals of history alongside those who refused to believe that the earth was round and not placed in the center of our solar system. Often Christians are easily viewed in that light because of how often we seemingly rage against the consensus; thus in our desire to avoid being labeled as “unenlightened” in areas of obvious scientific proof we take the opportunity when possible to show that we can love Jesus and be reasonable. I understand that dynamic.
I still am wary of consensus as the guiding principle for fact and truth. Facts and truth are what they are regardless of human opinion. Objective truth is not in the eye of the beholder - it transcends argument and establishes a foundation and anchor point for knowledge that transcends our sensibilities. The reason that I am stating the obvious is because I am troubled today by where the argument for truth by consensus goes in a democratic society. The consensus - scientifically - in Nazi Germany was that the Jew had genetic inferiorities from birth. The consensus among much of today’s Islamic community, historically, is that the holocaust never happened and that there was never a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem.
This is how Barack Obama defines morality: “the standards and principles that the majority of Americans deem important in their lives, and in the life of the country”. This sounds, in his book “The Audacity of Hope”, so noble and excellent - particularly compared with the frustration many in our nation currently have with the “Christian Right” and their grating notions of antiquated morality. What a worthy goal - to contend for what the majority of Americans deem important! Hearing this definition, however, makes me cringe. Why? What the majority of Americans deem important, related to morality, is radically different today than what was considered unacceptable just a decade ago! The “consensus” changes so fast, that it is difficult to keep up with what constitutes morality today versus the morality of our fathers.
What Obama and others have not considered is that the Bible depicts the destination for the nations in their zeal to redefine morality by consensus rather than biblical truth. Great judgment is coming, and those who subscribe to the consensus will be swept away suddenly in its relentless power. This is what Jesus was describing in Matthew 24:36-44, when He compared the hour that is coming to one of the the last times there was a global consensus - the days of Noah.
What Obama can not promise, nor reconcile in his book or personal ideals, is that the Bible is clear about the cost of human consensus apart from God. I tremble at the consequences of his ideals and the manner in which many will hail with great joy his deceiving and sinful genius, disguised as a benevolent and conciliatory plea for togetherness and cooperation.
12 comments March 20th, 2007