Of my generation – millennials – many have a liberal mindset and ideology. That may not come as a shocker to you but what is shocking is that this mindset has even permeated the Church. In particular, young believers. It is possible to be a Christian but share the same liberal mindset as your peers.
How is this possible?
Even though we are saved we still live in a world where we are constantly barraged by liberal ideas.
Why is liberalism so appealing to my generation?
It is appealing because it acquiesces to our sense of justice….to our sense of “I am a good person”….to our sense of activism. If you have not read John Bevere’s book Good or God I suggest you do. Bevere explains how we did not eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Evil and Evil but rather from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. In other words, our sense of conscience comes from man’s fall not from communion with God. We have within ourselves both good and evil – neither of which is from the Lord. This “good” is a good that is based upon man’s assessment of what is right and wrong and is thus imperfect. We see this played out in Judges 17:6 “In those days there was no king in Israel; every man did what was right in his own eyes.” and Proverbs 21:2 “Every man’s way is right in his own eyes […]”. In other words, if something appeals to our sense of right and wrong (good vs. evil) then we assume that it must be right and thus God’s will. This is incorrect theology and why discernment is so important.
Discernment helps us to know not good from evil but rather what is man’s idea of goodness and what is actually from God. Having discernment will prevent us from falling for this trap and it is a gift we must ask for. It will help us to know what is of God and what is of man and their idea of good. We must understand that God operates on a different plane. He operates on another level. He knows what is going on behind the scenes. He knows the thoughts and intent of the heart. We do not.
Liberal ideology is an attack on the Spirit of wisdom and understanding.
Collisions 1:9 “For this reason we also, from the day we first received these tidings, have never ceased to pray for you and to entreat that you may be filled with a clear knowledge of His will accompanied by thorough wisdom and discernment in spiritual things;”
Philippians 1:9-10 “And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ; ”
It is clear from scripture that we cannot know what is the will of God and walk on a straight path without the gift of discernment.
Discernment is not simply judging or making logical assumptions and then applying a Bible verse. It is understanding what is unseen and discerning the motivation and intentions of the heart. It is seeing beyond what the world sees to see God in the midst.
We have stopped listening to God and started listening to ourselves. We have believed the lie that our sinful nature and that liberal culture has been preaching to us. Liberal thinking is not truly liberal or “free”. It is freedom from God’s way of doing things not actually freedom of humanity. It is a false freedom.
We need to make sure that in our quest for social justice that we are not disparaging God’s people. What do I mean by that? There are a lot of people who have passion for righting the wrongs of injustice. However, we must also be sure that we are operating in the Spirit of Christ in these things and not in the spirit of a liberal progressive movement because He is not in that. It is a counterfeit movement of God’s spirit.
We must be sure that we are speaking from God’s spirit and not from an admixture of our opinion with God’s.
God is in the unity business. Social justice is man’s way of trying to right so many wrongs. Only God can fix and restore the dignity and self-worth that has been stolen. I feel strongly in this season that God is restoring ethnic identities as well as the identity of woman. However, I present a warning. We must be careful that we do not allow the enemy to creep in and take over with his idea of what social justice and retribution looks like.
I am of Jewish ancestry. Jews are the #1 target of hate crimes in America. Despite these facts we cannot let the enemy use injustices like this to try to bring bitterness and division or shame upon the innocent. We must not allow the political climate to cause us to take our eyes off of Jesus. We must not allow the political divisions within the church and our own opinions to take control. I speak up because I see and hear believers falling into this trap. They believe that they can bring unity through secular social means. I don’t believe or feel that this is how God is going to bring this about. It begins in the heart first not in policing thoughts or words. “By My Spirit says the Lord”.
Why has liberalism become such a powerful force throughout the Western world? Because it is a good that is not submitted to God but rather is submitted to our own sense of what is right.
Are we asking God what He thinks about politics and social justice in this hour or are we just following what we think and feel?