World View and Current Events
In a Post-Truth Age, Will Christianity Survive?
Mar 1, 2018

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Our malls display it. Our shows advise it. Our commercials glorify it. Our news justifies it. Our universities disseminate it. Have you guessed it? Every aspect of our culture proclaims that what matters in life is our feelings—our guide in this world is our pleasure—and anything that would deny us our freedom to "follow our own truth" should be dismantled.

Though it may seem this secular storm is too strong, we must cling to Christ, who can calm any storm with a word.

 

This is why the Christian message is so intolerable to our post-Truth culture. The idea that there is one holy God to whom all will answer is offensive—and so our culture seeks to silence Christianity by any means necessary.

Under such pressure and persecution, and with the siren song of our culture calling us to capitulate to the ways of the world, how will Christianity survive?

The Kingdom Is Growing

Before we despair the utter lostness of our society, we must remember the faithful lovingkindness of our God. Every moment, He is working around the world to grow His Kingdom and draw multitudes to salvation. The witness of Christ and His disciples over 2,000 years ago is as strong as ever and is yet bearing fruit.

Though our culture asserts that religion is obsolete, a 2015 Pew Research Center study shows that the world is actually becoming more and not less religious. People are searching for answers. They cannot escape the hunger for eternity that God has placed in their hearts (see Ecclesiastes 3:11). Although Christianity is declining in the West, it is blossoming in other regions of the world:

This means that there has been a huge shift in the center of Christianity. One hundred years ago, the average Christian would have been a white, middle-aged, middle-class Western man. Today, religious studies professor Philip Jenkins explains, "If we want to visualize a 'typical' contemporary Christian, we should think of a woman living in a village in Nigeria, or in a Brazilian favela."

But the Hour Is Grave

It is altogether thrilling to hear how the Gospel is reaching the nations—how today God is fulfilling His promise that His Kingdom will be made up of people from every tribe, tongue, and nation (see Revelation 7:9; Psalm 87).

But what about the Western world? Christianity is waning in North America and Europe. Has God left the West to go its own way? Will Christianity die out in our nation?

At this critical time, Christians must remember that "our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms" (Ephesians 6:12). There is a battle being waged for each soul we meet. And though it may seem that this secular storm is too strong, we must cling to Christ, who can calm any storm with a word.

Hope for Our Nation

Far from leaving the West behind, God is still calling and redeeming souls here at home. Here are three powerful ways that He is at work in our nation today:

  1. God is sending missionaries here.
    While the United States is still sending the largest number of missionaries by far, God is also bringing missionaries to us. In 2010, the United States received 32,400 international missionaries—the largest number received for any country. Shocking, isn't it? Perhaps as Christianity is given a new face, our culture will be more open to hear the Gospel for what it truly is—not a passé Western construct, but a message of hope for all people at all times.

     

  2. God is using His church to bring healing in the midst of tragedy.
    Whether our nation is facing the tumult of hurricanes, forest fires, terror attacks, or other tragedies, Christians are some of the first to respond—and our culture is taking note. In these moments of deep need, as Christians sacrifice their time, resources, and energy out of love for others, the Gospel is proclaimed to a watching nation.     

     

  3. God is moving in you, right now.
    The time you have spent engaging with this material is no accident. God is at work in you today even as you read this article. And you are not alone! There are millions of people like you who are also seeking to follow Christ and grow in His Truth.

Our sovereign God is still growing His church and drawing the lost to Himself. And just as He preserved a remnant of His people time and again in Scripture, He is sustaining believers in America today (see Romans 11:2-5; 1 Kings 19:18).

There is hope for the light of the Gospel to continue breaking through in the Western world—but you and I have an important role to play.

As It Grows Darker, We Shine Brighter

As our culture gets darker, the light of Christ—His peace, hope, and joy—will shine all the brighter in us. For Christ has promised: "If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit" (John 15:5). In our post-Truth world, we must learn how to depend on the Holy Spirit, who alone empowers us to live godly lives. We must know the Truth and speak it in love. We must be prepared to live boldly for Christ even when it costs us our relationships, livelihoods, and reputations. Eternal souls are at stake, and our witness is crucial.

Our lives will testify the Truth of the Gospel each time we:

  • Forgive as we have been forgiven (Ephesians 4:32; Colossians 3:13)
  • Love and serve others, even at the cost of our own lives, just as Christ has done for us (Ephesians 5:1-2; 1 John 4:7-21; Galatians 5:13-14; Matthew 20:28; John 15:13)
  • Persevere through trials because we trust in the purposes of our loving, sovereign Lord (James 1:2-4, 12; Hebrews 10:32-39; Romans 5:1-5)
  • Live righteous lives of humility, integrity, justice, and gentleness (Philippians 4:8-9; Ephesians 5:8-20; Galatians 5:16-18, 22-25)

We need not worry. Through His Holy Spirit, God has given us everything we need to obey Christ in this day and age (2 Peter 1:3).

Will Christianity Survive? 

John's vision in Revelation 7:9, 11-12 gives us a resounding yes:

After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. . . . All the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures. They fell down on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, saying:

 

"Amen!
Praise and glory
and wisdom and thanks and honor
and power and strength
be to our God for ever and ever.
Amen!"

God is faithful to His mission. He has already won the war. There will be no shortage of worship—or worshipers—in heaven.

So perhaps the real question is: On our journey Home, will you and I be faithful to bring as many souls with us as possible?

For now, we have work to do. Let us cling to Truth and boldly proclaim it, setting our eyes on Christ. Let us remain faithful to Jesus no matter what may come. Let us persevere in whatever trials He has ordained for our lives, knowing He will use them for His glory—for "[i]n that day the Lord Almighty will be a glorious crown, a beautiful wreath for the remnant of his people. He will be a spirit of justice to the one who sits in judgment, a source of strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate" (Isaiah 28:5-6).