People across the state of Texas are experiencing one of the greatest tests of their faith, as the effects of Hurricane Harvey continue to ravage the area.
The city of Charlottesville and the state of Virginia are still working through their own recovery, after a storm of a different kind.
American Pastors Network (APN) President Sam Rohrer has written a new editorial on the Charlottesville situation—and the decisions that other cities across the country subsequently made—that was published on Friday in LifeZette.com.
In the op-ed, Rohrer shares a "Christian rationale for preserving history" and says that unity will not be restored until we seek God's answer for our troubled nation.
"Truly, the light once emanating brightly from this 'shining city on a hill' is flickering and at risk of being snuffed out," Rohrer writes. "Unless America awakens now, America will cease to be. Until American Christians recognize and repent of worshipping our self-sufficiency, God's final judgment will soon be our end. Until we 'agree with God' concerning our sin and return to Him in humility and dependence, our nation will fall into the dustbin of history. Why do I say this? Because God does."
The crescendo of division among the nation's people is reaching a fevered pitch, jeopardizing the future by purging reminders of the past. Rohrer says we should ask these questions: "Where do we draw the line?" and "If you can take down one monument, then what is to stop the removal of everything from the past?" Others are trying to make the case for why certain monuments should be removed while others should stay. The first is a logical question. The second won't be agreed upon.
"Our national memorials were erected because of their importance in our history—not because they represent perfect people or only the best of times," Rohrer says. "Our culture is too divided now to hearken back to the individual merits of each monument. Nearly everyone refuses to defend their historical value, lest they be identified as 'racist,' 'supremacist' or worse. Because of the complacency and silence from both the church and civic leaders, God's people will be destroyed for a lack of knowledge of His truth (Hos. 4:6). This silence is deafening and is quickly propelling the enemies of freedom toward victory."
Rohrer also points out that the Bible, in Joshua 4:21, says that memorials, even a pile of stones, are for the purpose of reminding—bringing to memory—some important occasion. God said they are to cause our children and grandchildren yet unborn to ask "why is this here?" and "what does it mean?"
"God-fearing parents and grandparents should use those opportunities to remind children of who God is, what He has done and His relationship to the people at that time," Rohrer says. "Memorials, erected by the support of the people or culture from a given point in time, should remain. To attack a legitimately erected memorial is to attack our forefathers' judgment and to say that we know now what is more worthy than they did themselves. To deface or destroy an erected monument is not only a civil crime, it is a detestable act of arrogance.
"Let's use the present focus on national monuments as a time to recognize how the sinfulness of mankind always produces a tension among human beings," he continued. "Now is the ideal time to proclaim that in Jesus Christ—the Redeemer of mankind—all people, regardless of color, nationality or station in life, can find their intrinsic value before God. This is the time to teach that no human has any singular claim to truth but that all truth is found in God. Now is the time that Christians should show the world that unity is only achieved at the foot of the cross—when we believe that Jesus Christ alone is the way, the truth and the life! When we agree with God, peace, healing and unity will be the result."
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