The church is silent far too often:
If you are a biblical Christian you ought to know what my title refers to. It of course goes back to the words of Jesus. As we find in Luke 19:39-40: “And some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, ‘Teacher, rebuke your disciples.’ He answered, ‘I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out’.”
When God’s people do not speak out, there are other sources to draw from. And there has been plenty of deathly silence from our church leaders on so many crucial issues of the day, be they life issues, family issues, or freedom issues. I have written before about these matters, including this piece.
The silence of the lambs when it comes to the alarming theft of our basic human rights and liberties by power-drunk leaders in the name of keeping us safe is also quite deplorable. Where are our pastors and leaders when we need them? Most have rolled over and played dead, doing whatever the secular left state demands of them. They live in fear and subservience to false messiahs.
It is a case of ‘the State is my shepherd, I shall not want.’ And when you do hear from some of these ‘Christian’ leaders they are saying the most idiotic and unbiblical things imaginable. I have even heard some of them insist that anyone who does not get the jab – or what is now a never-ending series of jabs – is in fact disobeying God! Some are actually saying this sort of blasphemous rubbish.
So when our religious leaders are either staying silent or are siding with our heavy-handed overlords, then we must look elsewhere for truth to be proclaimed. We need to look to non-Christian ‘prophets’ to fill the gap and courageously stand for truth.
And many have. I have featured many of them on these pages over the past 24 months. When God’s people refuse to do their job, then God is quite able to raise up others who will. Shame on the church for this embarrassing and disappointing state of affairs.
Two helpful pieces on this very matter have just appeared – one by a Jewish commentator, and one by a Christian. Dennis Prager wrote recently about how “Clergy have become largely indistinguishable from their secular counterparts”. It is well worth quoting from. He begins:
For two years, Americans have been partially or entirely deprived of fundamental freedoms – of assembly, speech, religious liberty, making a living, a child’s right to an education, access to early treatment for a potentially deadly virus, and more – for the first time in American history. That half of America, especially its elites, has either made peace with or supported these deprivations of freedom is why many of us worry about America’s future as a free society.
Even more concerning has been the reactions of America’s great religions – specifically, Catholics, Protestants, Mormons (Latter-day Saints) and Jews. The government issued irrational (as well as anti-religious and unethical) edicts, and nearly every church and synagogue obeyed.
These churches and synagogues closed their schools to in-classroom instruction despite the fact that COVID-19 presented virtually no threat to young people. Exponentially more children have been hurt by closing religious and secular schools and, later, by making children wear masks – even outdoors – than by COVID-19. This has been made clear not only by relevant data in America but by Sweden, which never closed its schools for children under 16 – and not a single student or teacher died from COVID-19.
As Swedish physicians wrote in a letter published in the New England Journal of Medicine in February 2021: “Despite Sweden’s having kept schools and preschools open, we found a low incidence of severe Covid-19 among schoolchildren and children of preschool age during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Among the 1.95 million children who were 1 to 16 years of age, 15 children had Covid-19, MIS-C, or both conditions and were admitted to an ICU, which is equal to 1 child in 130,000. … No child with Covid-19 died.”
Recently, some churches and synagogues told their congregants that children as young as 5 had to be vaccinated in order to attend services. It is immoral to give young children a COVID-19 vaccine for which we have no long-term safety data, and especially when children are not at risk from the virus. Yet most churches and synagogues, pastors, priests and rabbis have insisted on it.
Given the sheep-like behavior of so many of America’s religious leaders and institutions, the question is: Why? There are both similar and different answers for each religion. The similar reasons are that most religious institutions and leaders have become largely indistinguishable from their secular counterparts. With the exception of attending church or synagogue, most Christians and Jews think and act like most secular Americans.
Regarding COVID-19, most religious leaders have been as scared as most secular leaders. And regarding fear, the only major difference between Americans has not been between religious and secular, but between right and left. Conservative clergy have been less scared than liberal clergy, just as conservative nonreligious Americans have been less scared than liberal nonreligious Americans. Which, of course, prompts the question: Does religion make people wiser, better and more courageous? Or has religion largely become something that serves only to make adherents feel good?
He looks at how some of these various groups have responded and then closes with these words:
The fact is that a disproportionate percentage of those who defied irrational and unconstitutional governmental mandates have been religious Americans. The tragedy of American religious life is that religious people who lack courage are concentrated in leadership positions.
In September 2021, for the 15th consecutive year (except for 2020), I led Jewish High Holiday Services for about 400 people – no masks required, and no vaccination necessary. Other synagogues could have done the same thing – but nearly all rabbis and synagogue boards were too scared and too obedient to do so. And of course, the same holds true for most churches, whether Catholic, Protestant or Mormon. Too scared. And too obedient to irrational dictates.
They will pay a price as people will gradually come to understand how weak their religious leaders were. And they will pay another price: by keeping their churches and synagogues closed for so long (for no good reason), many of their congregants may just not return. If my clergy didn’t think it was important that I attend for nearly two years, maybe it just isn’t that important.
The other commentator is Christian activist Jim Garlow. He penned a piece called “When God Couldn’t Find Enough Bold Pastors, He Called the Truckers”. He starts by noting how there have been times in recent history where it seems that God has raised up voices when the churches were far too silent. Here are some of them:
In 1978, God looked down on America and could not find enough bold pastors to stand up, so He said, “I am going to find an associate clinical professor of pediatrics at the University of Southern California School of Medicine, with a Ph.D. in child development, and I am going to prepare him to do what I need done.” So God raised a young Dr. James Dobson to a position of national and international influence for righteousness.
In 1980, God looked down on America and could not find enough bold pastors to stand up, so He said, “I am going to find a Hollywood actor who has been divorced, once a liberal, and I am going to prepare him to do what I need done.” So God raised Ronald Reagan to a national and international position of influence for righteousness.
In 1990, God looked down on America and could not find enough bold pastors to stand up, so He said, “I am going to find a football coach at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and he is going to launch a movement for men called “Promise Keepers.” So God raised Bill McCartney to a position of national and international influence for righteousness.
Then of course he looks at the recent Canadian trucker convoy – those fearless men and women willing to stand up for freedom and to stand against increasing government tyranny and oppression. He writes:
In 2022, God looked down on all of North America and could not find enough bold pastors to stand up, so He said, “I am going to find a group of truckers in Canada who care about freedom and liberty, who hate tyranny and despotic rule, socialism and medical coercion, and I am going to bring them to Ottawa, Ontario to do what I need done.” So God raised up the truckers who congregated in Canada’s capital city to a position of national and international influence for righteousness.
How do you view the Canadian truckers event? A protest? A blockade? OK, maybe it includes that. But it is so much more. Could it be a spiritual renewal? Or a revival? Or at least a “pre-revival,” a precursor to an awakening? Quite possibly.
Some might think that truckers are an unlikely place for God to look. However, there are so many examples throughout history where God used the “unlikelies.” God tends to work with those who will say yes to Him and then obey. The truckers did exactly that.
I have talked with some of the Canadian truck drivers. They are peaceful and committed to nonviolence. In fact, according to interviews with people on the ground, their event has a family-friendly atmosphere. Crime has dropped to zero in Ottawa.
Pray that outside agitators, saboteurs or even government plants don’t infiltrate this movement. Contrary to Trudeau’s accusations, they are not terrorist or racists. The protesting truckers are hardworking, blue-collar people who bring you every single item you own.
Why would God call them? The answer is obvious. We have needed someone to help lead the charge against the avalanche of political despotism and governmental tyranny around the world. God found someone. In fact, He found lots of “someones”: truckers. Canadian truckers. This is not the way we might have expected Him to work. But He has always used the “unlikelies” and “unusables.” Take King David, and the twelve disciples, for starters.
If God cannot find enough bold, courageous, godly pastors, He will find another way to accomplish what needs to happen. There are some strong pastors in the U.S. But not enough. There were not enough in Canada either. So God had to find another way. And He did.
That brings me back to the truckers. Are they all Christ-followers? Of course not. Many are. (There is a remarkable ministry among truckers, but most people just don’t know about it.) But even among those who don’t yet personally know Christ as Savior, there are enough vestiges of Judeo-Christian values within them that they are willing to make a stand. And God is blessing them.
Many persons who are not of the kingdom still understand kingdom principles and often stand for them and—knowingly or unknowingly—operate within them. These truckers inherently know that God did not create government to abuse its people, but to protect them. And they are willing to risk their occupations, their equipment, their livelihood and their safety to declare, “Enough is enough.”
Some call it a protest. And it may be. Peaceful protests are right. But it is so much more. Some think it is about medical mandates. And it is. But it is more. So much more. This is spiritual. You read that right. As noted above, this might be a precursor to a revival. Only time will tell. But it might be.
So long as the truck protests can avoid outside agitators inciting evil actions or words, God is going to bless this. The truckers may set Canada free. At this point, it is too early to tell. Then maybe America, then possibly Australia. Then country after country. We have heard of trucker convoys formulating in places as far away as Israel.
These words are not hyperbole or melodrama. This is the promise of God, who will still be here after Trudeau and Biden and all the other enemies of freedom have ended their times of enslaving the people whose liberty they can never permanently take. Political leaders did not give freedom. Therefore they cannot forever take it away. God looked down. He looked for someone who would say yes. He found them. In Canada. A group of truckers.
Whether or not God is as fully in all this as Garlow suggests, I think he is dead right to claim that when Christian leaders refuse to speak up about the things that matter, then God may very well raise up secular stones to get the job done. God bless those brave Canadian truckers.