There is a discussion to be had and it may as well begin as, to how Christians should respond to the world around us especially in times of crisis. We have been discussing on these blogs that many folks have been watching cultural clues as to how society reacts to various issues since it has tried and in many way succeeded in getting faith and religion out of the discussion and the action. One can imagine from the way movies were made a few years ago that during that time churches would have been the first place governors would send the members of their States, rather than the first places that they would shut down.
There was a time when churches and faith based organizations were seen, even by the health care community, as a part of the solution not part of the problem.
There was time when the social service agencies and health service worked hand in hand with the religious leaders. Those times are over, We can cry about and complain, but the truth is, the powers that be are treating Christians exactly like Jesus said we would be treated. The church which was looked to for giving clarity in chaos is now looked at as causing some of the chaos. Pastor Mark Barz wrote an article called “Clarity in Chaos: The Care of Souls in a Possible or Probable Time of Dystopia”. Barz quotes two books in the section below – one is Pilgrims Progress by John Bunyon and the other is by Anthony Esolen called “Out of Ashes; Rebuilding American Culture” Washington District of Columbia Regenery Press, 2017. Esolen discusses the play between Christian faith in God the Creator Redeemer and Sanctifier and the powers that want to claim the office of the Triune God. He writes –
How should we then live? Esolen urges: by not pursuing “progress,” but by living on a pilgrimage. As Pilgrim’s Progress asserts and reveals:
“Christian is not Christian unless he is on the pilgrimage.” Pilgrimage involves self-denial; progress promises self-indulgence. Pilgrimage is the
way of the cross; progress supposes to eliminate suffering. And Jesus is himself the way we must travel (Matt 4:18–22; John 14:6). Esolen writes: The
pilgrim knows we have no lasting home on earth and turns his gaze toward heaven above; the progressive believes we have no lasting home in heaven, and turns his gaze toward earth, to make it a paradise by means of technology and sheer brute force. … The pilgrim calls upon God; the
progressive calls upon other men, whom he suspects or despises, then he calls up on technology, including the technology of government, and
finally, when all of that breaks down, he calls upon wickedness itself.