Safe And Sound Part 2
© 05.21.17 By D. Eric Williams
This article appeared in the May 25 edition of the Cottonwood Chronicle
For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways. In their hands they shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone (Psalms 91:11-12).
Psalm 91 is generally attributed to King David. It is often thought it was written in reaction to the judgment of God for David's numbering of the fighting men (2 Samuel 24:1). Moreover, it is said it was addressed to his son Solomon. However, like all the psalms, this work was written for corporate worship. Thus, the second thing we need to understand about Psalm 91 is that it (like the majority of Scripture) was written for the corporate people of God.
I've written about American Folk Religion in this column many times in the past. But, just to refresh your memory, American Folk Religion is a non-Christian religion using Christian terms, claiming a belief in the Bible, proclaiming Jesus as Savior and so on. What American Folk Religion does best is take well-worn Christian doctrine and give it a new unscriptural twist.
American Folk Religion has infiltrated much of the Church and so in many churches there are adherents of American Folk Religion worshiping right alongside born again Christians.
One of the best ways to spot American Folk Religion is the emphasis on feeling. For instance, I recently had a conversation with someone who claimed to be a Christian but said they thought false doctrine was okay "as long as it makes people feel good about themselves and God." This person attended a local church known for "teaching the Bible" and equipping the saints for practical Christian service. Nevertheless, he revealed himself as an American Folk Religionist with his ready acceptance of heresy "as long as it makes people feel good about themselves and God."
Many Christians have adopted the hyper individuality common in American Folk Religion and accept the idea that God's corporate promises are normally available to the individual Christian. But that's not what the Bible teaches. The Bible tells us that God's many blessings are manifest primarily in a society that lives in obedience to God's word. This does not entirely preclude the blessings of God on an individual or a single family. Nonetheless, it is wrong to say the promises of peace, prosperity, health and so on are as readily available to the individual as they are to the corporate Body. The Bible tells us so (Deuteronomy 27:1 and so on).
The history of the West in comparison with the rest of the world bears this out. The (relative) peace, prosperity and health of the United States in contrast with the turmoil, poverty and disease of Haiti cannot be explained by racial, socio-economic or even political arguments. Ultimately the tremendous contrast has a spiritual origin. We have been blessed because we are a nation founded on Christian principals. God's blessings have been realized because of the vigorous heritage of the Christian Church in this nation. Believe me; I am fully aware of the many sins of the Body of Christ in North America. An impartial survey of the history of the Church in this nation seems to reveal as much bad as good. Yet God has blessed this nation. Can you imagine how wonderful it would be if everyone who claims the name of Christ truly served him? Can you imagine the glorious world we would live in if every Christian actually brought their life and arena of activity under the lordship of Jesus Christ?
Nations and other corporate institutions are judged in this world not the next simply because national identities are eliminated in eternity. This nation has been blessed like no other. Therefore it follows that it will be judged like no other. Yet, I believe we still have time to turn things around.
I'll be back in a couple weeks.