Listen to the Warnings!

“So, the three heads blew their shophar and smashed the jars. They firmly held the torches in their left hand and the shophar in their right hand to blow it. And they called out, ‘A sword for Yahweh and for Gideon!’ And each man stood his ground surrounding the camp. And the whole camp ran out shouting. And thus they fled.”

(Judges 7:21-22)

Armies are built on discipline and order. Once an army is disordered and chaos ensues, it is extraordinarily difficult to rally the troops. We might say that the Midianites and their Allies were routed “without firing a shot,” as one might say today. The watchmen who were supposed to sound the alarm in time for the army to form into divisions did not. Instead, the Midianites were roused from their sleep by crashes and shouts from the Israelites who were all around them as well as from other panicked Midianite troops. Thus the men fled into the darkness.

We have mentioned before that the church in America today has grown a great deal like the Midianite camp. We have become comfortable, lazy, and have been lulled into a sense of security due to the protections that we have enjoyed — protections that are systematically being removed in many places throughout our country.

There is a point of difference, though. In many pulpits in America, the watchmen on the walls have been crying out and declaring that the enemy is dismantling the battlements and is mining the walls. Yet, few listen. Here I am not speaking of the conspiracy theorists or of the radicals who retreat from culture; I am speaking of the man who faithfully proclaims the word of God week in and week out and who exhorts the people to walk in uncompromising faith and Truth. Yet, in many cases — dare I say, in most cases! — the people will not listen. And when the soldiers do not listen to the cries of the guards on the walls, then what will happen to the society around them? What will happen to the culture that is supposed to honor Jesus? What will happen to the church that is meant to be the body of Christ and not a country-club? Indeed, they will collapse unless the people take up the Word of God, apply it first to their own lives to the point of repentance and obedience, and then teach it by word and action to the culture around us.

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