America is in the middle of a very wide, very deep and very dangerous leadership crisis. Today it took the Prime Minister of Israel to give a historic speech in a Joint Session of Congress to help the world understand what should have been made clear by our Commander in Chief: a nuclear armed Iran is of no benefit to anyone on this planet. It seems as if our nation has fallen, and we can’t get up. (Watch PM Netanyahu’s speech, here.)
Where are my pastor friends and Christian leaders? What I mean is, why have we mistaken leadership position for actual leadership? Why are we so silent – so afraid – when it comes to recognizing and addressing our national leadership crisis? We are in the midst of a perfect storm – a storm of moral, political, theological and financial convergence – and instead of leading the discussion and influencing society as salt and light, we Christians in America are frightened, hiding and silent.Our actions prove the point: we are in the middle of a very deep and very wide leadership crisis. If we don’t dig ourselves out soon, I’m afraid we will soon be buried. Does anyone share my sentiment?
“The leadership void must be filled. It will be filled. The question is, by whom? Our world is more ripe than ever for a global Antichrist. “
AFRAID TO L-L-L-L-L-LEAD
Our leadership crisis is evident in all walks of life, but it is especially obvious among Christians. We’re afraid to l-l-l-l-l-l-lead. We seem to have exchanged leadership and courage for being hipster and trendy. If we Christians are not speaking to the moral, theological and spiritual issues of the day, then who is leading us – and what views are they encouraging us to follow? Haven’t we in the Christian community become ironicallyirrelevant through our silence?
If we want to be hip and trendy, we have Hollywood. But if we want the power of God coursing through our culture, we need God. And I’m not talking about those who reject Christ. I’m talking about those of us who say we follow Him. We’re not following Jesus if we are fear-filled, hiding and silent when the world desperately needs courage, boldness and clarity. Jesus wasn’t any of those things – and neither were any of His followers in the early days of our faith.
Perhaps when the annals of 21st Century American Christianity are written, it will be said of us that we feared criticism from people more than we sought the approval of God. How far we have strayed from the boldness of Peter and the other Apostles who, when facing opposition, proclaimed “We must obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29). If Christian leadership is anything, it is bold. Cowardice and Christianity are not sisters. They are enemies.
What on earth has happened to us?We all seem to have marginalized ourselves, through our silence, at this key time in world history when godly leadership – leadership that is bent on protecting freedom and liberty – is absolutely vital.
FEAR, SILENCE AND THE ANTICHRIST
“Courage is not the absence of fear. It is the redirection of fear toward a noble purpose.”
Our world will have her leaders – one way or another. We’ve allowed our fears to paralyze and silence us at a time when they should be driving us to the feet of Jesus and making us courageous. Courage is not the absence of fear. It is the redirection of fear toward a noble purpose. Christian Courage is the byproduct of time spent with Jesus. Godly leadership is the byproduct of having the heart of God, which can only come when we spend time with Him. If this is true, then our root problem is neglecting Christ. Our godly leadership crisis is a symptom of the deeper issue.
Because of our fears and silence our world is more ripe than ever for a global Antichrist. In fact, fear and silence are magnets for antichrists. They multiply like cockroaches when God’s people don’t tow the line. We Christians who are in positions of leadership need to wake up and stop mistaking our leadership positions for real leadership. Holding a leadership position does not make any of us a leader. If we in Christian leadership positions don’t begin to lead – to really lead – I am afraid our decline will accelerate. We see this trend in the Bible again and again. When there is no godly leadership there eventually arises godless leadership. We seem to have forgotten a key teaching in the Bible – and history is again repeating itself.
“Would you prefer to pray for and submit to godly or godless leaders? If you prefer godly leaders, then begin to ask God to make you into one – and ask Him to raise up godly leaders all over the place – while we still have time.”
Which would you rather be under, my Christian friend, godly or godless leaders?We are commanded in Scripture to pray for our leaders, and to submit to the governing authorities over us (1 Timothy 2:1-3; 1 Peter 2:13-15). Would you prefer to pray for and submit to godlyor godlessleaders? If you prefer godly leaders, then begin to ask God to make you into one – and ask Him to raise up godly leaders all over the place – while we still have time. Don’t delay. Do this now. We’ve had our heads in the sand for far too long. We may not have as much time as we think we have to turn things around.
What is happening before our very eyes may one day be recognized as the most crucial time in U.S. and world history.The leadership void must be filled. It will be filled. The question is, by whom – and for what will the leaders stand once they arise? This should wake us up, and get us back on our knees – the starting point of all true transformation.
We are living in a simultaneously frightening and exciting time in world history.The leaders who arise will shape the future in absolutely astounding ways, for better or worse. What we need is godly, courageous leadership – not sometime next week or next month or in the next Presidential election. We need godly, courageous leadership now – and we need it everywhere.
In a post later this week, I’m going to address how the “Rapture” and the return of Christ have become evangelical “escape hatches” God never meant them to be. Stay tuned, and invite your friends.
WATCH NOW AND LEARN WHAT LEADERSHIP LOOKS LIKE:
Click here to watch Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech
to a U.S. Joint Session of Congress on March 3, 2015
Chime in. I’d love to hear your thoughts . . .