Marvin Olasky – Hardship that helps the cause of Christ

NICK EICHER, HOST: Today is Wednesday, February 17th. Good morning! This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Nick Eicher.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: And I’m Mary Reichard. Here’s Editor in Chief Marvin Olasky on how to criticize with credibility.

MARVIN OLASKY, EDITOR IN CHIEF: Joe Biden began his presidency with talk of “unity.” If by that he meant join us in tribalistic politics and aborting babies, of course we just say no. But Christians should recognize that all of us with contrasting worldviews live in the same country. We should hope to be at peace with each other. As Jeremiah wrote in his famous chapter 29, believers should seek the welfare of the cities in which God has placed us.

Those who want Christians to declare war on the Biden administration might quote Jesus saying, “I do not come to bring peace, but a sword” (Matthew 10:34). Yes, but Jesus also said “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God” (Matthew 5:9). He said, “All who take the sword will perish by the sword.” He said in the garden of Gethsemane, “Put your sword into its sheath; shall I not drink the cup that the Father has given me?” (Matt 26:52, John 18:11)

Do those sayings contradict Jesus’s report that with His coming we have conflict? No.

Jesus was summarizing with biblical objectivity the result of his presence: Unbelievers declare war on Him and his followers. But Christians should not be aggressors. God has placed us in the United States during the Biden administration. He placed Daniel in Babylon during the Nebuchadnezzar administration and Christians in Rome under Nero. He placed our brothers and sisters in China under the dictatorship of Xi Jinping.

Let us keep calm and drink the cup.

By my choice of comparisons, you can see I’m pessimistic about what will happen in Washington under President Biden. But Never-Trumpers who declared war on President Trump in January, 2017, left all their further pronouncements lacking in credibility: Of course they would emphasize all the negatives. We hurt our credibility if we are Never-Bideners. When we can be positive, we should be. That will make our frequent protests stronger.

As Biden might say, here’s the deal: Godly people in ancient Israel aspired to theological and governmental unity. Our situation, though, is more like that of Daniel, Esther, and Paul. Our calling at WORLD is to transcend partisanship and be biblically objective reporters. God calls all of us to Christian compassion regardless of who is president. For example, since U.S. abortions peaked in 1990, prolife volunteers have contributed to the number of abortions falling by almost half. That’s happened even though pro-abortion Democrats occupied the White House more than half the time.

Hardship might help the cause of Christ. One more abortion reference: During the Trump era it was easy to cheer White House pro-life pronouncements, even as pro-abortion forces pushed ahead with do-it-yourself chemical abortions. Now, maybe more Christians will volunteer at pregnancy resource centers instead of centering our hopes on government grants. Maybe we’ll remember that compassion—literally, suffering with those in need—is not an option: All who follow the Bible are called to it.

I’m Marvin Olasky.

(AP Photo/Evan Vucci) President Joe Biden talks with audience members as he waits for a commercial break to end during a televised town hall event at Pabst Theater, Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021, in Milwaukee.

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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