Have We Lost the Battle?

…Is it actually relevant in a modern world and should a Christian fight for his or her right to visibly exercise their faith in the secular world?

Some Christian writers, bloggers, and would-be spokesmen have suggested that we have lost the sexual battles and need to get over it and move on: lost on the pre-marital sex issue, lost on the multi-divorce-remarriage issue, lost on the homosexual-bisexual-transgender issues, and certainly the homosexual marriage issue as well. The advocates of this position point to the changes both in culture and law that are taking place in Europe and North America, and these advocates seem to take the Anglo-centric view that what Europe and North America do is of course superior to what other continents, nations, cultures and peoples might think, believe or practice. The truth is, until very recently the entire Christian church family agreed on moral standards for individuals, family and marriage, and the battle for the Judeo-Christian understanding of marriage and family is anything but lost on a global basis. While many western denominations are rapidly declining in attendance and vitality, non-western Christian churches are booming…

Read on at the American Anglican Council.


6 thoughts on “Have We Lost the Battle?

  1. Indeed the “Battle” is the Lord’s! “Thus saith the Lord unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not your’s, but God’s.” (II Chron. 20: 15) And in the N.T., the Christian presbyter is called upon to: “Fight the good fight of faith”, but not strictly for the Lord Himself, but his own eternal life and salvation (1 Tim. 4: 12 ; 19)), which he is also called upon to give in his “good profession before many witnesses.” (Verse 12) And his “charge” here before the Lord and through His Apostle Paul, for himself as all those in the presbytery, (1 Tim. 6: 13 / II Tim. 4: 1). But note also, how this is connected to the great eschatological commandment: “That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ: Which in his times he shall show, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords: Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen.” (1 Tim. 14-16) And this is always quite the NT “presbyter’s charge”!

    Yes, Amen, this is quite “loaded” this ‘the Battle of God’, and the Lord’s “charge” to the Apostle Paul, and all those the Lord Himself has called to this “commandment” and “charge” itself!

    (Rev. Fr. R.)

    1. Btw, it is no secret that I myself believe we are in the day of Gentile Apostasy, and that the “Last Days” and end-times begun somewhat in Acts 2: 17-20 (noting Joel’s prophecy), is now quite well underway (after almost two-thousand years), as Paul speaks of this apostasy in II Thess. 2: 3, etc… “For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work..” (verse 7). The restrainer, the Archangel Michael? (Dan. 12: 1) Surely the great Apostle Paul speaks of such in places like 2 Tim. 2: 19 through chapter 3. In the end, our only assurance is the Apostles Doctrine (verse 14), with of course the Sacred and Holy Scripture, (2 Tim. 3: 5–17, Old and NT.

      Thankfully, God is quite in control, and has His purpose surely on the move! (Titus 1: 1-3 ; 2: 12-14) The great question is always with us! Do we still believe God’s Word and Purpose these so-called many years later? These are always quite above modernity & postmodernity! Btw, the so-called General Epistles of Jude and 2 Peter are surely being pressed-out before us, in this day of “lasciviousness” and licentiousness that quite abound, and before our faces almost daily! But as in the Parable of Matt. 25: 1-13, with the “five wise” and the “five foolish” virgins, which are we? And do we have enough “oil” to arise at the “midnight…cry…Behold, the bridegroom comes; go out to meet HIM!”

      1. “And do we have enough “oil” to arise…” – what does the “oil” represent for you?
        or for Fr. Stephen, or anyone else here?
        is it simply Faith? or the Fruits & Gifts of the Holy Spirit?
        what ‘reserves’ did the “foolish virgins” lack?

      2. @Margaret: Great question, and gets to the heart of the Parable here! Which is the visible kingdom of heaven, in this life… we should look back at Matt. 13 here, and Jesus use of the whole aspect and nature of His parabolic discourse, in all of them He shows that there are the true and the untrue, see Matt. 13: 38-43. So in Matt. 25, we can see the true verses the untrue “Virgins”. Indeed all claim to be Virgins, but only those: the “wise” or real Virgins…”the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps.” (Verse 4) But the unwise or “foolish” “took their lamps, they had no oil with them.” (Verse 3) We don’t want to over-load the “Parable”, but verses 10-11 show that only those that were “ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was shut. Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us. But he answered, “Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.” (Verse 12) It does quite appear that they, the “foolish virgins”, really never knew HIM! See also, Matt. 7: 21-23…”I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.”

        Here is a nice note from the ESV Study Bible on this Text/texts: “The OT speaks of “knowing” his chosen people (Jer. 1:5 ; Hos. 13: 5 ; Amos 3: 2). The same theme continues in the NT, where it describes a saving relationship with God through Jesus Christ (cf. Gal. 4: 8-9 ; 2 Tim. 2: 19).

        Indeed, or surely, the so-called “Virgins”, or the Confessing Church must “watch correctly”!

        Btw, see Rev. 19: 7-9, for The Marriage Supper of the Lamb: “Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb.” (See Psalm 45: 13-15)

        *I would also be remiss and unfaithful to God’s Word, were I not to speak here of God’s faithful doctrine of Divine Election! This great and grand doctrine is quite central to the great doctrine of God Himself: His, divine providence & sovereignty! Let us not be afraid of this great revelation, though of course we shall never fully understand it, especially in this life ; nor perhaps even in the next! (Rev. 4: 9-11 ; 5: 8-14)

        “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do the words of this law.” (Deut. 29: 29)

        Romans 8: 28-35, we as Christians, and God’s elect…Are secured by God’s grace and purpose, as ‘In Christ’! Also, Ephesians 1: 4-6…”To the praise of the glory of HIS grace, which HE freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.” (Verse 6) Divine Election is always simply/profoundly ‘In Christ’, God the Father’s “Beloved”! May we seek to love him, who first loved us!

      3. “I never knew you; depart from ME” must be the saddest words ever – irrevocable!!
        Gives one cause to pause–at every thought, word and action; at every motivation & impetus!

      4. @Margaret: Yes, Matt. 7:22-23 (actually the whole section of verses from Matt. 7: 13 through 20 with too 21-27) is one of the more sobering and frightening section of verses in the NT to my mind! Actually the key to this section is the figure (“Epanadiplosis”; or Encircling: The repetition of the same word or words at the beginning and end of a sentence.) here in verses 16 through 20… “You shall know – fully know and recognize” , and then the greater expression and illustration in verses 17 and 18, with the conclusion in verse 19 and 20…”Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them.” And here of course is to know and recognize by “fruit”, that interior life of regeneration and salvation which alone is given by God In Christ! And this only God can do through His calling, regeneration, adoption etc. and gift of faith! And this only those in the “election of grace” manifest it!

        “Even so then, at this present time there is a remnant according to the election of grace.” (Rom. 11: 5)

        And only “God’s Elect or chosen” … ‘Gives one cause to pause–at every thought, word and action; at every motivation & impetus’! 🙂

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