“And Gideon said unto Him, ‘Oh my Lord, if the Lord be with us, why then is all this befallen us?…” (Judg. 6:13).
The current state of our society makes one question the very existence of the ‘good God‘ that we often hear and read about in the Bible. As we struggle with this reality, it becomes difficult to explain this to others as we attempt to share the good news of the Gospel with them. Why? Because just as we are able to see the evil all around us, they are able to see it as well. The only difference is that they are not seeking for the answer in the same place in which we are searching.
In today’s Scriptural text, we see the one of the main characters, Gideon, asking the very same question that we ourselves have asked God. Although the people in ancient times were not facing the same physical dangers that we are now currently facing, they are still facing the same spiritual enemy. However, in this instance, we are not discussing nor giving the enemy’s actions a platform by which to ascribe to him a place of influence that he does not deserve. But we are looking at our situation through realistic spiritual lenses.
What is the cause behind Israel’s current state of oppression? What is the reason behind America’s current state of oppression? In the text, we find the answers to these two questions. After reviewing the previous verses, we find in verse 1, that, “…the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord…” The children of Israel had established a behavioral pattern after the deaths of Moses and Joshua. They would commit to a covenant with God, only to turn away from Him after he delivered them from their oppressors. In such circumstances, God is no longer obligated to honor His part of the covenant relationship because Israel had caused a breach in the covenant by their actions. God is no longer bound by His promise to become an enemy to their enemies (Ex. 23:22). Why? Because Israel disobeyed God by turning away from Him and turning to other gods.
There will always be consequences for our actions whether positive or negative. The one thing we cannot afford to do, as Americans, is to act as though our nation is not guilty of engaging in the same behavior as Israel. We have removed God from almost every part of society and replaced Him with other ‘gods’. We have oppressed others in the name of liberating them and establishing a democratic government, while forcing them to bend to our oppressive will and demands. We bind them to us by promising support to them as long as their country is acting to support our best interests, without any concern about their own. As a result, we see the breach within our government increasing with each passing year.
Unless God is returned to His place of honor within our society, we will continue to see our society becoming worse. The leadership in every societal sector will continue to invest in their own interests to the neglect of those they are supposed to be leading and representing. As those in power continue to control the direction of the rule of law and the wealth of the nation, those in the remaining group of citizens will continue to live less than ideal lives.
Where are we now? Surveying the spiritual climate, it appears we are far away from God. However, there is always hope because God is always near and waiting for us to return to Him (Hos. 6:1). His love for us and His grace and mercy will always cause Him to await our return. In consideration of this, we must always consider the source. To resolve the problem, we cannot continue to look at the surface because the answers lie much deeper below the surface. Once we arrive at the root of the problem, we will be able to address these concerns to prevent a recurrence of the problem.
Sean Mungin, author of “The Thorn In The Flesh”