The pressure is neither subtle nor hidden, but it is all pervasive. If you believe Jesus Christ lives, that as the second Person of the Trinity, the eternal Son, He entered into creation itself a few hundred generations ago in Israel, lived and died and rose again, and rules and reigns in your heart through His Spirit, joining you to a supernatural body of fellow believers all across the world and the ages, you had better keep your mouth shut about it in public places. That is the message of the Secularist Jihad sweeping across Western society. Hiding behind the term “tolerance” and constantly speaking about “not offending” (well, offending anyone but Christians, anyway), the forces of secularism have firmly entrenched their revolutionary leaders in the highest levels of the entertainment industiry, the entire educational system, the government, and, most importantly, the judiciary. Every form of speech is sacred to them—except Christian speech that would say Jesus Christ is Lord…the Lord, the Lord alone, the only Lord, etc. Exclusive claims are out, at least for Christians (Muslims are free, however, to not only deny Christian claims, but to make their own exclusivist claims—partly because they normally do so in Arabic so that the secularists are clueless about what they are claiming anyway).
   
The Internet is buzzing with the decision (noted here) in which black-robed king/priest of secularism, David Hamilton, ruled that Christians can’t pray publicly in government buildings—ok, he would say that’s not true, but what he said was that any person chosen to give the invocation be instructed it must not advance any one faith or be used in a bid to convert listeners, i.e., Christians can’t pray, since we do not pray to some nameless, faceless deity, but to the Triune God manifested as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Of course, the most ridiculous thing is that Hamilton is allegedly interpreting the Constitution…a document written by a bunch of folks who never once walked out on a Christian prayer during their proceedings. To say they (the authors) intended their words to carry the meaning Hamilton has “found” in them is a gross absurdity, and his ruling makes a mockery of his alleged constitutional duties, but that is the nature of Western culture today. It is on “self-destruct” mode, and words no longer have meanings, history can be re-written at will—all in the service of the Secularist Jihad.

More directly relevant to your life this very day is the fact that you will be pressured, overtly in many instances, less so in others, to be ashamed of the Lordship of Jesus Christ over all of humanity. Christianity is now an official heresy in our land, a violation of the “sensibilities” of secularism. What can you do? You can’t change society overnight, of course. The first thing you can do is to realize you are in a battle. The New Testament does not contain frequent references to spiritual battle just for the fun of it. And I’m not talking about the flakey pseudo-spiritual stuff lining bookstore shelves today, either. Driving to work can be a spiritual battle. The radio, advertisements along the road, all seek to communicate to you an anti-Christian, anti-Lordship of Christ message. The first thing we have to do is stop sleepwalking through the Christian life. A soldier going into a war zone knows it, prepares for it, and is on high-alert at all times. Most Christians don’t know it, don’t prepare for it, and are half asleep. Prayer, time in the word, corporate worship, the means of grace—these are our means of not only survival, but victory, in this battle. But remember, what victory looks like may be very different from what you have been told. Victory might be martyrdom. Victory might be losing your job. Victory might be imprisonment. Victory might take many forms the Joel Osteen crowd wouldn’t want to talk about in the next tome on how to be successful, happy, drive a nice car, live in a big house, and have white teeth. No, victory in this battle might look a lot like Christ’s victory on the cross.
   
In recognition of the need to be prepared, armed, trained, I am beginning a new series here on Pros Apologian (which, though I forget to mention it very often, happens to be the name of this blog, and the name of our chat channel as well). It is always my desire to equip and encourage. One of the greatest means of equipping is encouraging the saints to get God’s Word into their minds and hearts. Scripture memorization–not rote memorization without understanding, but memorization in context–is vital to making a person a confident witness in an ever increasingly anti-Christian context. I need to revitalize that discipline in my own life as well. So, by posting an item for memorization each week (and it may not always be a Scripture verse…sometimes it might be an original language term that is directly relevant to apologetics purposes) I will likewise be inviting those I meet when I travel (and I do a lot of that anymore) to hold me accountable to memorizing those very same things. Of course, I get to challenge you back if you challenge me, that’s only fair. But study and memorization is a vital discipline, and I hope to encourage at least some of my readers to join me in shoring up that area of our Christian lives in submission to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. The first text we will tackle is Colossians 2:8-9. I will post this in another article.

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