Tonight it seems that despite the efforts of curfews attempting to stop the protestors and rioters, lawlessness prevails. The picture above is of historic, St. John’s Church in Washington DC, when rioters — or should I say arsonists — set a fire in their basement. Thank God, that DC firefighters extinguished it. There was some damage to the building, but it’s repairable. (There are some fake pictures of other burning churches that people are trying to pass as St. John’s. The tweets from the DC Fire Dept. are below.) Here’s a little bit on their history from their website…
From our organization as a parish in 1815 until today, St. John’s Church has been a powerful symbol of faith in the heart of our nation’s capital. St. John’s was designed by noted architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe to serve Episcopalians in a growing residential community in the neighborhoods in the western end of Washington.
The cornerstone of St. John’s was set on September 14, 1815. St. John’s first service was held on October 27, 1816, and the church was consecrated on December 27, 1816. Beginning with James Madison, until the present, every person who has held the office of President of the United States has attended a service at St. John’s. Several early Presidents were communicants, as were more recent ones. Thus, St. John’s is known as “the Church of the Presidents” and is registered as a National Historic Landmark. Pew 54 is the President’s Pew, and is reserved for the President’s use when in attendance at the church.St. Johns Church, DC
A 205-year-old building almost destroyed! And for what? What in heavens name does burning a historic church have to do with protesting a bad cop overstepping his power on an unarmed man? What’s happening across our country — America — is heartbreaking.
My Pentecost Sunday started joyfully as I sprang out of bed eager to get to church to volunteer on the cleaning crew and to serve communion. It was the first day our church was meeting in person in weeks because of the lock-down. Less than half of our regular congregation attended in person, but they broadcasted both services on Facebook Live. An excellent message by Pastor Chuck at First Christian Church of Phoenix (FCC)…
Pastor Chuck brought up a question at the start of his message: “What have you learned about following Jesus in a pandemic culture?”
My first thought was — We need more “voices in the wilderness” (Matthew 3:3).
It boggles my mind how we can go so quickly from a “we need to heal our country from the pandemic” — to a “lets burn the country down” mentality. It all has to do with social media. I hate to say it, but that’s it. In no other place in time can millions of people be encouraged to not only protest, but to turn violent and riot in all of our cities in so short of a time span.
Blame Social Media
The problem is the few bad people — I’m calling it like it is — have a VERY LOUD VOICE. That’s how a well-organized, terrorist group like Antifa can organize so many “protests” that turn into riots so quickly.
Today, Lance Walnau held a Facebook Live presentation that explained a lot…
Another excellent message, but one thing he said that helped me make sense of what was going on…
He said — and I’m paraphrasing — “The devil is manifesting the riots because the Holy Spirit is growing in power.” Huh? Well, think about it. This past Easter, 3 things happened..
- It was the first time ever that modern churches were told to not congregate because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Because of the pandemic, people were seeking answers and they turned to the churches.
- Because the churches were now streaming online, their services were available to anyone, anywhere.
Thus, a great number of people have turned to Jesus Christ and have professed Him to be their savior. Greg Laurie’s Harvest Church alone claims over 50,000 people have come to Jesus! He said today in his Pentecost Facebook Live feed that on the first Pentecost, they only had 3000 new believers. That was a lot for that time. Look at the what the power of the Internet can do today!
We Must Turn the Power of the Internet into a God-tool
Just like the bad voices can use the Internet and social media, so can we. Here’s what we have to do…
- Share — don’t just like a Christian post. Liking is good, but sharing is better. It gets more reach. The reach increases by however many friends you have. The more reach you have, the chances are better that more people will see it.
- Share Christian content — Anything — Bible quotes, videos, songs, messages, ANYTHING! Share it public on your favorite social network. With the YouVersion Bible App, you can easily create nice pictures with Bible verses and share them. Paul wrote to Timothy… “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17 NTL)
- If you have the inclination to do so, blog, record a video, preach and share!
In the last days,’ God says,Acts 2:17-18, quoting the prophet Joel 2:28-30 NTL
‘I will pour out my Spirit upon all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy.
Your young men will see visions,
and your old men will dream dreams.
In those days I will pour out my Spirit
even on my servants—men and women alike—
and they will prophesy.
“Prophesy”, in this case, means preach.
And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come.Matthew 24:14 NTL
Jesus said — when he was yelling at the Pharisees…
Outwardly you look like righteous people, but inwardly your hearts are filled with hypocrisy and lawlessness.Matthew 23:38 NTL
Paul tells Timothy…
You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!2 Timothy 3:1-5 NLT
I remember when I first studied this passage in a Bible study group at FCC. I exclaimed — this describes today! Ever since then, it’s one of my favorite passages to quote on social media. (Feel free to grab this image and share it.)
The Faster we get More People to Accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior,
the Faster we Increase the Power of
the Holy Spirit Here on Earth!
And to answer the question in the title — Will it get worse? Yes, it will. We are living in the last days!
Do you know Jesus as your personal savior? Do you have the Holy Spirit in your heart? You can. It’s easy. Just….
Believe. Repent. Be Baptized. Receive the Holy Spirit.
Pray this prayer humbly and wholeheartedly…
“Dear Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner. I believe You died for my sins. Please forgive me. Right now, I turn from my sins and open the door of my heart and my life to you. I confess You as my personal Lord and Savior. I will follow you for the rest of my life. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
Next Steps in Your New Walk with Jesus…
- Start reading the Bible daily. If you don’t have one, I recommend the YouVersion, Bible.app and Through the Word app — both are free and have a lot of great daily devotionals and Bible studies.
- Pray every day. Talk to God. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you daily.
- Find and join a Bible-believing church — preferably a non-denominational one and be baptized!
- Sola Scriptura (“Scripture alone”): The Bible alone is our highest authority.
- Sola Fide (“Faith alone”): We are saved through faith alone in Jesus Christ.
- Sola Gratia (“Grace alone”): We are saved by the grace of God alone.
- Solus Christus (“Christ alone”): Jesus Christ alone is our Savior, Redeemer, Lord and King
- Soli Deo Gloria (“to God alone be the Glory.”): It’s all about God not us.
From Twitter on the church fire…
Top picture source: “The historic St. John’s Church in Lafayette Square across from the White House was set on fire by protesters in Washington, D.C. on May 31, 2020. | Fox News” from The Christian Post