A Brief Meditation for the Month

August 2022

Looking around at our increasingly godless, hedonistic, chaotic, contemporary society, we are confronted on every hand by the products of modern man’s supposed enlightened thinking. However, the most alarming aspect of it all is the shocking insidious inroads such thinking is making into the minds of growing numbers who profess to be Bible-believing Christians. Sadly, that which calls itself “the Church” appears to be ignorant of the divine requirement to be “spiritually minded,” Romans 8:5–6. The inspired apostle Paul appealed to the believers in the church in Philippi, “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus,” Philippians 2:5. Paul understood that a characteristic of true believers is their Christlike thinking. As the work of sanctification, or growth in holiness, progresses in the experience of the children of God, their thinking becomes more and more that of John the Baptist, who testified concerning Jesus: “He must increase, but I must decrease,” John 3:30. If Christlikeness is to be seen in the lives of those who call themselves Christians, then “self” must fade into the background.

The crying need of the present hour is for spiritual-mindedness among those who claim to be Christians. According to God’s mind, conveyed to us through Paul, the spirit of the believer’s thinking is changed from what it was previously—Ephesians 4:23. As our society spirals downward into further moral depravity, every child of God must steel himself or herself against any intrusion of unbiblical thinking Satan would endeavour to introduce into their minds. The God-honouring thinking of Christians ought to distinguish them in society as those who love God and his divine laws, and who are willing to endure ridicule, and even persecution if necessary, rather than follow the crowd to do evil, which God forbids, Exodus 23:2. It is a sad reflection upon the spiritual condition of the professing church today that the popular opinion often rules rather than the word of God. The question, “what saith the scripture,” Romans 4:3; Galatians 4:30, has become irrelevant to a large extent in the minds of many who claim to be God’s people. They seem to be more influenced in their thinking by majority opinions and actions. Many who profess to be followers of Christ are just too lazy to search the Bible themselves. They content themselves with the false notion that the majority cannot surely be wrong or mistaken. They seem to overlook the teaching of the Saviour about the broad way “that leadeth to destruction,” and the majority are journeying on it—Matthew 7:13. The foundational principle of the Protestant Reformation—“Scripture alone”—appears no longer to apply. Instead, popular opinion, usually based on ungodly reasoning, settles many issues within the institution called “church”, and society more generally.

The concept of a sovereign Creator God imposing upon his creatures moral absolutes is anathema to an increasingly vocal percentage of our population. Accountability to an all-wise God who knows what is best for the stability and prosperity of human society is mocked as an antiquated idea. The purpose of the Bible, according to many, is to frighten us into submission to a divine ogre who gets pleasure from the misery endured by his terrified creatures to whom he denies the freedom to will what they want and to want what they will. God, if he exists, they vehemently declare, has no right to interfere with the self-centred, pleasure-crazed creature, who exercises his reason and will to know and choose what is best for him. In contrast, however, with a Christlike submissive spirit to the will of God, the true believer speaks from the heart, “thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.”

G. G. Hutton.