Having a Different Kind of Influence
“…In the most crucial section of his essay, Professor Tushnet delivers the ultimatum to the losing side in the culture conflict, including evangelical Christians – ‘You lost, deal with it.’ To his fellow revolutionaries Tushnet announces, The culture wars are over; they lost, we won. Then he goes for the kill in making his argument: “For liberals, the question now is how to deal with the losers in the culture wars. That’s mostly a question of tactics. My own judgment is that taking a hard line (“You lost, live with it”) is better than trying to accommodate the losers, who – remember – defended, and are defending, positions that liberals regard as having no normative pull at all. Trying to be nice to the losers didn’t work well after the Civil War, nor after Brown. (And taking a hard line seemed to work reasonably well in Germany and Japan after 1945.) How to deal with the losers? Here we meet the reality of liberal judgment in a day of liberal ascendency. Tushnet argues that conservatives should now be met with a hard line and a demand for total surrender – no accommodation whatsoever. Don’t even try to be nice to moral enemies, Tushnet commands, since their arguments have no normative authority of any kind. With absolute candor, Tushnet calls for moral conservatives of all stripes to be treated like Germany and Japan at the conclusion of World War II. Both nations, having declared war on the United States and its allies, were required to submit to unconditional surrender and were subject to occupation by the victors. We are to be treated like defeated Nazis and the Japanese high command.” Albert Mohler, The Moral Revolutionaries Present Their Demands: Unconditional Surrender
Daniel 9:1-2 - In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of Median descent, who was made king over the kingdom of the Chaldeans— in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, observed in the books the number of the years which was revealed as the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet for the completion of the desolations of Jerusalem, namely, seventy years.
4 principles to guide our ministry in the world in which we live
I. Be Sure You are __________________ Yourself and Your Family in the Word of God
A. This was an __________ even in Jeremiah’s/Daniel’s Day
Jeremiah 27:12-14 - I spoke words like all these to Zedekiah king of Judah, saying, “Bring your necks under the yoke of the king of Babylon and serve him and his people, and live! Why will you die, you and your people, by the sword, famine and pestilence, as the Lord has spoken to that nation which will not serve the king of Babylon? So do not listen to the words of the prophets who speak to you, saying, ‘You will not serve the king of Babylon,’ for they prophesy a lie to you…”
Jeremiah 28:10-11 - Then Hananiah the prophet took the yoke from the neck of Jeremiah the prophet and broke it. Hananiah spoke in the presence of all the people, saying, “Thus says the Lord, ‘Even so will I break within two full years the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon from the neck of all the nations.’ ” Then the prophet Jeremiah went his way.
B. __________ being “dull of hearing”
Hebrews 5:11-12 - Concerning him we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food.
II. Look for Opportunities to Let Your Relationship with Christ __________
A. Opportunities to _________ for God
Daniel 1:8 - But Daniel made up his mind that he would not defile himself with the king’s choice food or with the wine which he drank; so he sought permission from the commander of the officials that he might not defile himself.
B. Opportunities to _______________ God
Daniel 2:27-30 - Daniel answered before the king and said, “As for the mystery about which the king has inquired, neither wise men, conjurers, magicians nor diviners are able to declare it to the king. However, there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteries, and He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will take place in the latter days…But as for me, this mystery has not been revealed to me for any wisdom residing in me more than in any other living man, but for the purpose of making the interpretation known to the king, and that you may understand the thoughts of your mind.
C. What about ______?
“As long as fundamentalists and evangelicals have a theology that places them constantly in an adversarial relationship to this world and its culture, they will continue to involve themselves with art only when trying to censor it; with politics, only when it is a quest for control; with science, only when they want to oppose evolution; with victims of AIDS, only when they remind them that they deserve it; and with education, only when school prayer, sex education, and condoms are discussed. Our involvement in this world must not only be negative; it must be positive. It must not only be political and moral; it must be cultural, and it must not depend on mass organization, but on the responsibility each one of us has to fulfill his or her calling. Each one of us, whether a factory worker or an Ivy League professor, is responsible to contribute positively to his or her own sphere of influence which includes one’s calling, family, relationships, neighborhood, and nation. Let us take this world seriously, with no illusions of a “Christian society” and at the same time, no embarrassment in seeking to influence our sphere of activity, to the glory of God and the good of our neighbor.” (Michael Horton, Beyond Culture Wars, p. 208)
III. Allow Your Belief in the Sovereignty of God to _________ You to Love and Serve Others
Daniel 12:8-10 - As for me, I heard but could not understand; so I said, My lord, what will be the outcome of these events? He said, Go your way, Daniel, for these words are concealed and sealed up until the end time. Many will be purged, purified and refined, but the wicked will act wickedly; and none of the wicked will understand, but those who have insight will understand.