Nothing New…

Good Morning Brothers…

Preparations for the upcoming season are in full swing. Stands are up, cameras are set, feed is out, and the excitement of my 10 year old climbs by the day. Dove season opens in 7 days and we are excited to get the fall hunting seasons under way. Many of you are aware that I do not monitor social media or read the newspaper. I do, however, watch the news and read through the CNN and Fox News websites. I follow the latest news and try to stay somewhat current on the wildfire of the day because my daughter is involved with debate. I listen intently to the subjects she is debating and which side she is taking. I find it both interesting and horrifying by the points of view she “tries on” in preparation for a debate. I’ve been accused by many of being to “black and white” for my own good and I suppose that is true. I believe that “grey areas” are journey’s and not destinations. Taking up residence in a “grey area” is either being lazy or spineless in my opinion. Again…I am a black and white kind of guy…I can’t help it.

Solomon says in Ecclesiastes 1:3-11:

What advantage does man have in all his work
Which he does under the sun?
A generation goes and a generation comes,
But the earth remains forever.
Also, the sun rises and the sun sets;
And hastening to its place it rises there again.
Blowing toward the south,
Then turning toward the north,
The wind continues swirling along;
And on its circular courses the wind returns.
All the rivers flow into the sea,
Yet the sea is not full.
To the place where the rivers flow,
There they flow again.
All things are wearisome;
Man is not able to tell it.
The eye is not satisfied with seeing,
Nor is the ear filled with hearing.
That which has been is that which will be,
And that which has been done is that which will be done.
So there is nothing new under the sun.
10 Is there anything of which one might say,
“See this, it is new”?
Already it has existed for ages
Which were before us.
11 There is no remembrance of earlier things;
And also of the later things which will occur,
There will be for them no remembrance
Among those who will come later still.

I read this passage and think of all of those young people debating subjects without the benefit of knowing history. Then…I think of all of our political leaders setting policy without knowing history. King Solomon makes the point that there is nothing new under the sun, everything that we see has been seen before. Everything that we encounter has been encountered before. Every problem we face has been faced before. There is a famous quote, the authorship of which is unclear, “If we do not know our history we are doomed to repeat it.” This quote is meant to have an ominous undertone and it does, however, it also has a silver lining when applied to the thousands of refugee children fleeing for their lives and stacked up on our nations border. The Church needs to remember their history. The Church needs to remember that we have been here before.

In ancient Rome, before the Christian Church was officially recognized and protected, it was persecuted. At this time, the culture of Rome practiced “infanticide” by exposure. These babies were left overnight to die. There were many socioeconomic reasons to do so and they were widely debated, however, the practice was lawful and observed by the poor and rich alike. The evangelistic thrust of the gospel into this culture resulted in the Church sneaking out at night to rescue these babies and raise them as their own. Now…please understand, the Church was not yet recognized by the State and these acts were the outpouring of grace and mercy only possible under the influence of the Holy Spirit. How much was choreographed by Church leaders and how much was Christians being Christians is unclear from the historical accounts. What is clear, is the impact on a pagan culture that didn’t value life by a bunch of outlaw Christians with love in their heart. Over time, the culture changed, the Emperor converted to Christianity, and the laws were changed to ban “infanticide” by exposure.

How does this bit of Church history relate to the refugee children on our border?

These children are under a death sentence running for their lives. I wouldn’t let my 16 year old daughter go to Wichita by herself and these kids are crossing countries looking for freedom. Our government has largely barred any Church organizations trying to help these kids and embraced the Church organizations saying, “Send them back.” All of the socioeconomic reasons that were in play in ancient Rome are back in play here:

  • We can’t house them
  • We can’t feed them
  • They have abnormalities and diseases
  • Our school systems can’t educate them
  • Our Child and Family Services can’t process them

In other words…let them die.

Once again, the Church finds themselves in a pagan society that doesn’t value human life, especially the life of a child (I’m not even going to get started on abortion). History has repeated itself, Solomon is still correct, and the Church is faced with an allegiance question and an application question. First…who do we serve? Do we still serve a God that values human life…or do we serve our culture that will debate this question until all of the children are dead. Second…what can we do? We may think there is no answer to this question, but that is our culture speaking…not God. Do you realize that if 1 family in every church in Kansas, adopted 1 child stuck in foster care, that the foster care system would be devoid of kids. Think about that…that would answer, at least, one question of the socioeconomic reasons. It would also start momentum, a movement for protecting life if you will. All of a sudden, Christians would start acting like Christians and housing would become available. Christians would start sharing their wealth with other Christians who suddenly have more mouths to feed, Christian Doctors would feel the call to serve and start treating the abnormalities and diseases and sooner or later…given enough time…the State would recognize the Church and the source of light and life in this country.

There is nothing new under the sun, evil abounds, but the Church is still here, and her marching orders are clear….LIFE.

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