On May 22, 2015, Ireland became the first nation in the world to recognize “same-sex marriage” as legal. Voters turned out in overwhelming acceptance to vote for the referendum to make it the law of the land to allow homosexuals to marry. It is also said that Ireland is a majority Catholic nation, and yet the vote was in favor of what appears to be a rapid change in what was once a social stigma. The United States is another country that is also moving towards full legalization of “gay marriage”. In June, the Supreme Court of the United States will decide once and for all if it is Unconstitutional to institute a ban on “gay marriage”.
The issue of homosexuality along with the acceptance of other sins seems to be troubling. For those of us who are in Christ, we must be aware of the changing times but we must not accept what the world has called “good” and “righteous”. We are already seeing Biblical prophecy being fulfilled. In Romans 1: 18-32, the Apostle Paul speaks to the wrath and punishment that God has and will inflict upon those who choose to live in a godless manner. Paul’s words are quite prophetic because his words penetrate into today’s reality. In Romans 1: 21-24 (NIV) Paul says:
“For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.Therefore, God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.”
If you read further in Romans 1, you will see that the blatant sinfulness that was committed during the time of Paul led to further destruction. However, these things that Paul mentions didn’t just happen during his lifetime, but the very things Paul mentions in 26-31 are happening today. We are living in a global society that has now chosen to reject the very decrees of God and accepted secular humanism as truth and a way of living. However, those who are in Christ should not bow down to this world system.
As an example of not bowing down, there is a familiar passage of scripture that involves Daniel and the three Hebrew boys. Most who know this story, remember the exchange that Daniel along with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego had with King Nebuchadnezzar. In Daniel chapter 3, we see that King Nebuchadnezzar has erected a golden image in his likeness. This was an image that was to be worshiped by all of the people within the nation of Babylon. In verses 4-6 it says:
“Then a herald cried aloud: “To you it is commanded, O peoples, nations, and languages, that at the time you hear the sound of the horn, flute, harp, lyre, and psaltery, in symphony with all kinds of music, you shall fall down and worship the gold image that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up; and whoever does not fall down and worship shall be cast immediately into the midst of a burning fiery furnace.”
At the sound of music, it was mandated that everyone worship the golden image or face a fiery furnace as a consequence. However, in verses 8-12, you can see that Daniel and his friends would not bow down to worship the golden image. In verses 13-18, the King has an exchange with Daniel and his comrades. King Nebuchadnezzar becomes enraged by their disobedience and threatens them with the fiery furnace. However, in the face of danger, the following answer is given:
“Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”
In the moment of what was impending death, Daniel and his friends chose not to bow down to the golden image. The first lesson we should take from this passage is that there was a resistance against what was idol worship and sinful behavior. Even in today’s time, those who are truly following Christ will be called to stand firm and reject the changing face of our world. While nations are approving of sin, and even forcing many to abide by such changes, there must and will be a remnant that will live for God in spite of various mandates.
What we are seeing displayed before our eyes today is just as Paul has said in Romans 1. Many have chosen to reject God and exchange His truth for a lie. However, what is worse is that there are many who are naming the name of Christ who have bowed down to this world system. Many church leaders have allowed themselves to be silenced because of threats that have come from government entities. There are also those who fear the backlash that would affect church membership. The truth is, if you are going to live for Christ, there will be friction between the world system and those who are in Christ. Concerning yourself over threats and persecution that may cause a loss of church membership is not the priority. The priority is to stand for Jesus Christ and to reject the sinfulness that has become common practice.
However, if you read further in Daniel 3, you will see that Daniel and his friends were not only thrown in the fiery furnace but God was with them. In verses 19-27, it is recorded that none of those thrown in the fire were affected by the flames because of God’s protection. It even came to a point in which the King was so astounded that he praised God in verses 28-29. The point to be made is that there are rewards for following God’s commands.
The truth about the time that we are living in is that our days on Earth are critical. Every single day, we are seeing an increase in violence, weather-related tragedies, and lawlessness. Laws will continue to be instituted that balk against what God has designed. Christians who are authentic and called will experience persecution, but we have safety in God as long as we are standing for Him and His laws. Satan has gained ground throughout the world by setting into place a system of idol worship. The majority including many who are claiming Christianity, are bowing down.
However, we who have accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior are called not to bow but to stand for God’s ways. Not doing so will bring ruin, and consequences for a rejection of God’s truth. You too can experience the blessings of God by accepting Christ and coming to the side of truth. You will avoid the consequences of sin if you confess it to Jesus Christ and accept His sacrifice on the cross. Choosing not to, and following this world’s order will lead to chaos and destruction. Jesus died and rose again so you wouldn’t have to be condemned. Choose Christ, and choose not to bow down to this system.