“Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.”
We live in serious times, and we face significant challenges. Contemporary society has normalized belief systems and behavior patterns that range from the disruptive to the terribly destructive. But as difficult as the issues of the present might be, they are merely harbingers of even greater challenges that lie ahead. Our responses today are a trial run for the even graver tests that are surely to come.
Our nation is suffering from moral confusion, cultural chaos, and social conflict. A great many politicians, pundits, professors, and provocateurs brazenly reject any and all vestiges of the Judeo-Christian heritage that has guided the growth and success of our nation. Having rejected that heritage, they offer no meaningful worldview in its place, other than a toxic combination of postmodernism, neo-Marxism, and nihilistic self–indulgence.
The resulting moral confusion and cultural chaos is evident in the dramatic increase in teenage suicides and tragic shootings that are devastating our schools and inner cities. Young people are hearing, absorbing, and feeling the nihilism of the post-truth narrative promoted by institutions and influencers in contemporary American culture, and it is producing despair.
How could it not?
What do we expect to happen when teenagers — who are trying to discover their identity and purpose — are told there is no God, and they are the accidental product of the mindless forces of nature in an impersonal universe?
When they are told there is no objective truth and that morality is subjective and self-determined?
When most forms of entertainment glorify violence, sex, and greed? When political leaders, social commentators, and news media viciously attack their opponents with little regard for respectful dialogue or discourse?
When social media is used as a platform for bragging and bullying? When pundits, professors, and politicians declare that the traditional moral standards of the West are to be rejected out-of-hand as antiquated and oppressive?
When young people are encouraged to find their true, authentic identity in their inward desires, no matter how bizarre or distorted those desires may be.
When they are told that women can become men, and that men can become women, have periods, and get pregnant. Or worse, that there are 50+ genders, and you get to choose your gender based on how you feel.
When the culture-shaping institutions and influencers of our country push a toxic narrative that America is an inherently and systemically racist nation that seeks to oppress everyone except straight, white males.
In this environment it is no surprise that young people are confused, lost, scared, and angry. Tragically, neither is it a surprise that self-harm and violence toward others is on the rise.
How do we address the growing discontent and division in our nation? What do we stem the tide of moral chaos? What action steps can we take to rebuild and strengthen our national culture?
I suggest we focus on the five following priorities:
- Rediscovery of Truth
- Reformation of the Christian community.
- Redirection of the human spirit.
- Restoration of the principles and structures of the Constitution.
- Renewal of culture-shaping institutions.
In the days that follow, I will elaborate on each of these priorities.
“When God’s standards are ignored the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law.” (Proverbs 29.18)