I continue to ask the Lord to help me grasp the message of the prophets, so as to apply it to our day. If God’s word is relevant for our day, the question I ask is, “What are the prophets saying in 2020?” Amos assures us, “The lion has roared – who will not fear? The Sovereign Lord has spoken – who can but prophesy?” (Amos 3:8).
In two places, Jeremiah (6:13-14 and 8:11-13) refers to prophets and priests giving false assurance of peace – “They dress the wound of my people as though it were not serious. ‘Peace, peace,’ they say, when there is no peace.” The NLT says, “They offer superficial treatments for my people’s moral wound. They give assurances of peace when there is no peace.” The Message says, “My people are broken – shattered – and they put on Band-Aids, saying, ‘It’s not so bad. You’ll be just fine.’ But things are not ‘just fine.'”
We have endured another long and contentious political campaign season. We have been bombarded by messages from both sides, telling us of solutions that will work for our nation. The slogans and supposed solutions are beyond belief. They are lies. They just don’t fit with a biblical worldview. We need help. The prophets call us back to God. But are we listening?
The notes in the “Bible Speaks Today” Bible (BST) give this analysis: “There is something astonishingly perceptive and perennially relevant about Jeremiah’s analysis…it is a terrible thing to mislead God’s people into falsehood, complacency and immorality, to be chaplains to the unrepentant and to collude in the culture of lies.”
“From the least to the greatest” (meaning all of society), we all want to benefit materially. Add to this cultural impulse spiritual leaders (prophets and priests) who are not being truthful. The result is a culture captivated by lies in both religion and politics. When such collusion between those who peddle the lies and those who profit from them becomes established, it poisons the whole culture with greed.” BST)
What is sad in our day is the lack of moral integrity in our public dialogue. Outrageous moral statements are made, obvious immoral behavior receives approval, and there is endless character assassination of political opponents. There is no longer any “social trust,” observes David Brooks. Biblical moral values are not even tolerated.
Jeremiah asks, “Are they ashamed of their detestable conduct? No, they have no shame at all, they do not even know how to blush” (6:15). The Message says, “There’s no hope for them. They’ve hit bottom and there’s no getting up.” Then God says, “As far as I’m concerned, they’re finished.”
When I think of those who have established the dominant narrative in our culture, which continues to echo throughout secular media, I think of hardened hearts that refuse to respond to the Spirit of God when confronted with the truth of Scripture. Are we now beginning to experience the wrath of God upon our society? Paul gives us a warning, “But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who push the truth away from themselves” (Rom. 1:18 NLT).
Men, I beg you not to be drawn in by those who show no concern for the moral and spiritual condition of our nation. When a person blushes, they are uncomfortable with their position for fear of being exposed. This is no longer the case in our public discourse. So beware. Don’t be influenced by all the posturing from those who seem to have the right answers. They are lying to you. Jesus gives us fair warning, “”Watch out that no one deceives you” (Mark 13:5).