Which God Is Lord?

© Curtis I. Crenshaw 7 September 2015

As you may have heard, Kim Davis, a Kentucky county clerk, has refused to issue marriage licenses to a gay couple. She has chosen jail over compromise to King Jesus. This test of the gods was sure to come, and the only surprise is that anyone is surprised. The world thinks that anyone in power has the right to make the laws of the land, that morality is arbitrary, that the highest law in the USA is the Constitution, which is really not true. The founding fathers wrote the Constitution with the idea that we would have a nation of laws and not of tyrannical leaders. BUT we now have not a Constitution but an oligarchy, a nation ruled by five judges who interpret the law, which really means, they make the law. There is absolutely nothing in the Constitution to change the definition of marriage, just as there is nothing there to give mothers the moral right to kill their babies.

I do not know the demeanor of Kim Davis when she refused the marriage license, but I hope it was one of humility and grace. While we Christians disapprove of LGBT, we do not disapprove of those in the movement. We do not have to affirm their actions to affirm them as creatures made in the image of God. My personal prayer is that the leaders in the group will be converted to Christ. Rosaria Butterfield was a tenured English professor at Syracuse University and living with her lesbian partner. But she was thoroughly converted to Jesus, left her lesbian partner, gave up her tenure, is now married to a male pastor, and they have four children! Another pastor befriended her with grace, and challenged her to read the Bible, which she did for several years, five and six hours a day, and she never looked back. (See her video here on YouTube.) So this blog is not meant to throw stones at the LGBT people per se, but to challenge us Christians to be understanding, and to stand with Kim Davis. We are in spiritual warfare, the battle that St. Paul spoke of clearly in Ephesians 6:9-13:

10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. (NKJ)

This battle is especially heating up in West in general but in the USA in particular. Things are coming to a head, finally. By this polarization, Christians, and all people in the USA, will have to choose who is the god around this country, Jesus or Caesar? The Supreme Court has drawn a red line through the middle of our culture, and has demanded that all people recognize their new definition of marriage, virtually the first time a whole nation has embraced such in history, that I’m aware of. It is not enough for us Christians to passively agree to same sex marriages, but our culture wants to make us endorse it is morally ok or else. . . . We must have the same confession or creed that they do. We must give up the Triune God or be persecuted. Consider the three Hebrew men in Daniel when they were so confronted.

Nebuchadnezzar spoke, saying to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the gold image which I have set up? 15 Now if you are ready at the time you hear the sound of the horn, flute, harp, lyre, and psaltery, in symphony with all kinds of music, and you fall down and worship the image which I have made, good! But if you do not worship, you shall be cast immediately into the midst of a burning fiery furnace. And who is the god who will deliver you from my hands?” [Notice the challenge to the God of heaven.]

16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. 17 If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. 18 But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.” (Daniel 3:14-18 NKJ)

When the music plays (when government commands), all its citizens are expected to bow.

The judges are no longer bound by the chains of the Constitution. Now judges will want to make an example out of Kim Davis for not bowing to them when the “music” is played. Kim has drawn a line in the sand and has appealed to the ultimate Supreme Court, King Jesus.

We know how the story ends: the three Hebrew men are cast into the fire, but they are not burned. The pre-incarnate Son of God walked in the furnace with them, and they were delivered. But even if they had not been delivered, they made it clear that they would still not worship false gods. Those who die in Christ, go to be with Him, so they are delivered even in death (2 Corinthians 5:8). Christians always win; again, Christians ALWAYS win. If we are delivered from death, we win; if we are delivered through death, we win! The world has never understood that death is not our enemy, as it is for everyone else, but our friend.

“The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD shall be safe” (Proverbs 29:25 NKJ).

14 Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, 15 and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage (Hebrews 2:14-15 NKJ).

Who is in trouble, Kim, or the Supreme Court? We Christians are peaceful, loving our country, maintaining a non-violent stance, being kind to (or should be) those who would force their idolatry on us. But that is not good enough. Everyone is exclusive in his worship, and those in power want Christians to knuckle under and confess a new god whose immorality is idolatrous. We cannot do that; we must not do that; we will not do that.

As I’ve said many times, the ungodly powers do not mind us worshipping a private Jesus, but He allegedly has no jurisdiction in public—that sphere belongs to the Caesar god. We humbly disagree. We cast ourselves on the mercy of the Court, the ultimate Supreme Court, the court that the King of kings dominates, the court that rules in all affairs of mankind. We often hear that such a stance brings religion into the public sphere, which allegedly ought not to happen, for the public sphere is where Caesar rules.

It is amazing to me that even Christians fall for such obviously rebellious statements. By “religion” those who oppose us mean statements about God, or our beliefs about Him, which they take perhaps to be well meaning but having no relevance in the culture as a whole. Sincere beliefs, they maintain, are ok, just irrelevant. My responses to that are several:

  • There is no such thing as a non-religious belief; all beliefs have transcendent referents or they are cannot be communicated. For how can one say Caesar is Lord unless he invokes the laws of logic and grammar of language that are over everyone, which in turn are created by the Triune God.
  • Every law enacted by the government is either an application of God’s law or an act of rebellion; there is no moral neutrality.
  • Every law enacted by mankind is someone’s morality.
  • We Christians love our country (I have a Bronze Star and Purple Heart from Vietnam), but for the good of our country and our souls we must do what St. Peter said:

27 And when they had brought them, they set them before the council. And the high priest asked them, 28 saying, “Did we not strictly command you not to teach in this name? And look, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this Man’s blood on us!” 29 But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men” (Act 5:27-29 NKJ)

But someone will say: “Did not Kim sign an oath to uphold the laws of the land.” The obvious answer is “Yes.” But she is under a greater oath to support the law of King Jesus. When man’s law conflicts with God’s law, we must humbly and with non-violence obey God rather than man, which, in the long run, is indeed good for our county.

When I was in Vietnam, we were forbidden to mistreat prisoners. “William Laws Calley, Jr. was a former United States Army officer found guilty of murdering 22 unarmed South Vietnamese civilians in the My Lai Massacre on March 16, 1968, during the Vietnam War.” [Wikipedia, accessed 5 Sept 2015] Some soldiers offered the excuse that they were commanded to kill those innocent civilians, but the prosecutor’s response was that he (and others, like myself) were trained not to obey such an order. A higher law ruled.

In our culture, people do not take the Triune God seriously; they do not believe in the Last Day and final judgment so they seek to make Him irrelevant and man’s law relevant.

I heard Obama comment on Kim on the news in the last few days, and he said she was required to obey because we are a nation of laws. What incredible hypocrisy! What did he do about the IRS that he promised to do? What did he do about Benghazi?  Did he order an attack on Fox News to be investigated in disobedience to the First Amendment? Do you recall, “If you like your health plan, you can keep your health plan? If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor?” Not to mention that each family would save significant money per year by taking the new plan, only to find it costs more, etc.

The national outrage against Kim has little to do with her refusing to obey man’s law and everything to with her Christian beliefs. It is the War of the Worlds where the unseen dominates the seen.

In the movie The Matrix, Morpheus (Greek god of dreams) takes Neo to see the Oracle, who reveals the truth and the future to Neo (change order of letters and you have One, Neo was the One); and right after Neo was martyred, Trinity resurrects him from the dead with a kiss, at which point he becomes invincible. All happens according to prophecy given by the Oracle. The unseen Matrix controls reality for everyone. The betrayer (Judas) of those who oppose the Matrix wants to be deceived so he gives himself to it for temporary peace, prosperity, and safety. Those who know the truth about the Matrix are the enemy; not those who live according to the Matrix’s rules. (Excellent movie; I’m describing the first one in the trilogy; others are not as good, in my opinion.)

No wonder Christians compromise because they have been trained not to take God’s law seriously, especially when we hear things like “We’re not under the Ten Commandments.” Really, the law is a revelation of God’s character (Leviticus 11:44-45; 1 Peter 1:15-16) so does His character change? Or, “It is still ok to worship God in our churches so what is wrong with that,” we hear? BUT the issue is, “Who is God?” A culture reveals its true god when its cultural beliefs are enshrined in its laws. Christians must not fall for the idea that Jesus is Lord in the churches but Caesar is lord outside the churches.

WE are being de-Christianized as a nation. We Christians are increasingly being moved to the fringes of our culture, being marginalized to irrelevance. But most of the guilt belongs to us for allowing such. If we stand, perhaps even now, we can turn things around, but it will cost us something. Let us Christians be like the three Hebrew men standing before a tyrannical king; let us be an anvil that wears out many hammers. AMEN. Ὡ