Our buddy, Tom Pounder, asked me to post a blog today in response to the weekend events in Charlottesville. At first, I resisted. With millions of voices already condemning the evil swarming those Virginia streets last weekend, it’s easy to join a self-righteous chorus in one more stanza of “Those people are wicked. We are offended. We are so superior.”
Then, I recalled a poem written years ago by Steve Turner. If Steve Turner is right, the voices of Charlottesville are not surprising aberrations, but inevitable outcomes.
Since that time, those in western culture have attempted to accomplish the impossible; we have thought we created a society with freedom and order without God. Despite the lessons of history and the evidence from Scripture, we convinced ourselves that we could sow the wind without reaping the whirlwind.
So, for six decades we have tried. Secularism teaches, “We don’t need God.” Nihilism proclaims, “We don’t need transcendent truth or eternal meaning.” My friends, what you hear in Charlottesville this weekend is not simply hateful people taking wicked action. What we are watching the de-evolution of a world without Christ.
The good news: Charlottesville is our generations cry, “We need Jesus.” Ravi Zacharias said it well, “A man rejects God neither because of intellectual demands nor because of the scarcity of evidence. A man rejects God because of a moral resistance that refuses to admit his need for God.” Charlottesville—along with the riots last year and the riots coming next year—is our generation confessing, “we need God.”
Who else can give freedom and order?
Who else can give meaning to the temporary?
Who else has emptied Himself so others can be full and, therefore, has the credibility to say, “Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others”?
Who else has the power to bring healing from heaven?
Into the darkness of Charlottesville, Jesus says, I am the Light of the world.” Now, He says, You are the light of the world. Charlottesville should be a wake up cry to Christians to abandon timid, cultural Christianity and to embrace the rugged, unpopular Christianity of the Bible.
Yes, the light has come into the world, and the world has loved darkness instead of light for her deeds were evil. But, be bold. No matter how boisterous the songs of darkness, Charlottesville reminds us that the religion of the secular doesn’t work. Even worse, it leads to death… as Jesus told us it would.
Isaiah 48:22, “There is no peace,” says the LORD, “for the wicked.”
In Charlottesville, I hear the voice of restless people. Deep inside, people without God know that something is wrong. Something is wrong inside them. Something is very wrong in their world. Yet, without Jesus and the Bible, they don’t know what do. So, they lash out.
In Charlottesville, I hear the voice of tired, frustrated people. Both the racists and the anti-racists. G.K. Chesterton famously noted, Meaninglessness does not come from being weary of pain, but meaninglessness comes from being weary of pleasure. We have exhausted ourselves in this indulgent culture.
In Charlottesville, I hear the voice of a lost generation. The only hope for that generation is Christ in you and me. We must sharpen our thinking—so we are not conformed to the foolish thinking of this world, but transformed to think like Christ. Then, we must resolve to be the Light of Christ, even when people prefer darkness.