Countering the Culture

Former Secretary of Education William J. Bennett has written, “There is a coarseness, a callousness and a cynicism to our era. The worst of it has to do with our children.  Our culture seems almost dedicated to the corruption of the young” (Reader’s Digest, August 1995, 37).

Examples could be multiplied to illustrate Bennett’s premise. The media is one of the worst offenders.

Passing it on

Can we parents afford to abdicate our responsibility to teach our children the ways of God? The Bible has much to say about parents’ training their children to know God and obey Him (Genesis 18:19; Exodus 10:2; 12:24-27; 13:7-8, 14-15; Deuteronomy 4:9-10; 6:4-7, 20-23; Joshua 4:1-3, 6-7, 21-22; Psalm 78:6-7; Ephesians 6:4; 2 Timothy 1:5; 3:14-17).

As James Burton Coffman has written, “The silliest and most satanic attitude we have ever encountered in Christian parents is this, ‘Oh, well, we are going to let Johnny make up his own mind.’

“Indeed, indeed, that is exactly what the devil would have Christian parents do. If only Satan would be so neutral! The Evil One will exert every pressure possible to persuade children to forsake the Faith and wallow in licentiousness” (Commentary on Psalms 73-150, ACU Press, 48).

Making a difference

My dad used to tell me Bible stories on the way to school. It’s amazing how much teaching we can do by using a few minutes here, a few moments there. But for my dad to be able to drive and tell Bible stories he had to know those stories well. Can we do that?

What can we as individuals do to save this great nation of ours? We can pray. We can be the best citizens we can be. We can be faithful Christians and win souls for Christ—especially the souls of our own children!

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The Six Stages

The following are all the possible stages a person can experience from conception to eternity:

1. The womb

Reincarnation is not biblical. We come into existence at conception and not before (John 8:58; also compare the relative ages of John the Baptist and Jesus—Luke 1:36; John 1:15, 30).

Abortion is morally wrong because it fails to respect the sacredness of life in the womb (Genesis 25:21-23; Psalm 139:13-16; Jeremiah 1:5; Luke 1:41-44).

2. Innocence

Infants and small children have no sin (Deuteronomy 1:39; Matthew 19:14). If they were to die at this stage of life, they would go to be with God.

3. Alienation

When we first sin we are separated from God and are destined for hell, unless we turn to God in faith, repentance, and obedience (Ephesians 2:1-13).

4. Reconciliation

New life in Christ begins at baptism (Romans 6:3-5; Galatians 3:27; Colossians 2:12-13). We are restored to fellowship with God and now have hope!

5. Hades

At death the spirit separates from the body. The Hadean world is where the spirits of the dead await the Judgment (Luke 16:19-31; 23:43; Philippians 1:21-24).

Hades is not the same as hell (Matthew 10:28; 25:41; Revelation 21:8). At Jesus’ death His spirit went to the portion of Hades called Paradise (Acts 2:27, 31; Luke 23:43).

6. Heaven

When Christ returns, the righteous dead will be raised and be given glorious new bodies (1 Corinthians 15:42-58; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). And then to live forever with God! What a glorious destiny awaits the faithful child of God!

We’ve all seen a diagram of a building or some other place that has printed on it, “You are here.” On our spiritual journey, where are we? Anyone reading this article is either in Stage 3 or Stage 4. If we stay in Stage 3, then our Stage 6 will not be heaven.

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