Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Los Angeles and the Learning Experience

A blurb I sent out recently about A Very Convenient Truth caught the attention of talk-show host Frank Pastore at KKLA Los Angeles, and I did a brief interview with him yesterday (May 12). Among other things, the interview served to remind me of a basic – and at times, inconvenient – truth: people – Christians – have a hard time grasping the concept that the Word of God is supposed to trump whatever the world thinks.

It may have been to elicit that response from me, but Frank kept moving the discussion into the political arena. That's understandable: it's an election year, and Sen. McCain is now bringing climate change to the forefront in his campaign. In fact, McCain has been concerned about global warming for many years, and has been criticized in the past for pro-green "bias".

So in the interview, Frank said on more than one occasion, “but this is a secular country: how does that (the premise of the book) translate into policy?” And I kept trying to explain that it has nothing to do with politics: that the premise of the book is that the current environmental trauma is less about GHGs and CACs and all about our personal relationship with God. Clear that up, and – just as in all other areas of life – He takes care of the worldly stuff. Get a whole bunch of Believers together, committing to follow the Word of God in every area, including environmental issues, and not buying into the world’s solutions (like making motor fuel out of the grain God intended for food), and you start to see results. Sometimes, the Word of God seems to have nothing to do with the “immediate” problem, but didn’t someone say that if we seek Him first, everything else will be taken care of?

Granted, it was only a 9-minute interview, and that’s a very hard message to get out. Thor Tolo gave me a full two hours, and we still didn’t cover everything. Frank had a very good point: politicians want to be seen to be Active And Engaged on important issues, and the concept of “seeking the Lord” gives every impression of someone who just wants to hide in his prayer closet until the problem goes away or someone else deals with it. But anyone who has ever had to rely on God to provide solutions knows that prayer – “Be still, and know that I am God” – is the most effective tool we have.

It all comes down to the hard-crunchy question for a Christian: Do you believe the Bible or don’t you?

I’ve preached this message on more than one occasion: the difference between believing in God and believing God. Believing in God means you accept that He exists; believing God means you read His Word and accept that it applies in everyday life, regardless of the physical situation.

Believing God is what faith is all about, and (to put it rather crudely) if you take faith out of your Christian walk, the Bible is reduced to a manifesto for the self-righteous. And then we’re no better than the pagans and Jesus-despisers in the environmental movement.

Our world is in a state of environmental trauma, and if we refuse to turn to the Creator for the solutions at this time – if we refuse to believe that Jesus died and rose again to give us the direct connection we need to the Lord in all things – then we’re like Peter in Gethsemane. We declare fervently that we’ll defend Jesus at all times, but when the soldiers of the world show up, we just swing our sword (the Word of God) wildly, hack off someone’s ear, and then run away to leave Jesus hanging on the Cross.

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