Everyone is supposed to clap for what’s culturally acceptable. What happens when an entire group is collectively demonized? Pastor Lutzer tells the story of Alexander Solzhenitsyn and the reasons why he stood against the political repression of the Soviet Union in his day. When Christian convictions are canceled in the workplace, schools, or social media platforms, to whom do we turn?
Get the brand new book, No Reason To Hide, at mcmoffer.com
Here are all of the ways that you can follow along with 5 Minutes With Pastor Lutzer:
- On our Podcast via iTunes and Google Podcasts
- On our Facebook page
- On our YouTube channel
Transcript: Welcome to “5 Minutes with Pastor Lutzer.” I’m so glad that you joined us again today as we talk about the culture and a biblical response to it. I’ve written a book, entitled “No Reason to Hide: Standing for Christ in a Collapsing Culture,” and at the end of this segment, you’ll be given information as to how this book can be yours. Chapter two of this book has to do with Collective Demonization. What that refers to is demonizing those who don’t fall in line.
Solzhenitsyn tells a very interesting story that comes to us from Russia. A deputy gave a very stirring speech about Stalin, praising him. When it was over everyone in the hall stood to clap. They clapped for 3 minutes, 4 minutes, 5 minutes, 6 minutes. Everybody was looking around and wondering who will be the first to sit down. Well after 11 minutes the director of a paper factory sat down and everyone was so relieved. That evening the director of the paper factory was interrogated. He was put in prison for 10 years and during his interrogation, he was told, “Don’t ever be the first one to stop clapping.” How does freedom die? Well, Solzhenitsyn would answer, “With thunderous applause.” Everyone is supposed to clap at the cultural currents that are swirling around us.
It used to be in America that you could apply for a job and as long as you are competent you would get the job. But as Victor David Hanson has pointed out, nowadays you can’t do that very often. You’ll be asked whether or not you agree with multiple pronouns. Whether or not you’re on board with the whole LGBTQ agenda. In other words, loud enthusiasm for leftist agendas now becomes the basis upon which you will be able to get a job, your promotion, your responsibilities, etc. That’s what we are doing. We’re living in a culture where it isn’t enough to simply be competent. For example, Rebecca and I recently had lunch with two employees who work in one of [the] stores [here in Chicago] and they’ve been faithful for 20 years. But they have been told that now they must wear a pin, the LGBTQ pin, the rainbow showing that they are on board with that agenda. When they said no they were fired. Think about that. It’s not enough that you simply serve well, with integrity. Now you must be on board with the whole agenda. I could give you so many other examples but I must hurry on.
Will we be willing to stand for Christ, even if we lose our jobs, even if we are demoted? Because we cannot go along with the cultural currents that are actually conflicting with our Christian convictions. Those are the kinds of issues that we have to think through today.
I’m thinking here of Moody Church, actually. Sometime ago a teacher in our public school system said that he was told that it is not enough to simply tolerate same-sex marriage. He said if you don’t celebrate it, you could lose your job. Now the question I have to ask is simply this: If he were to lose his job would the rest of the church come around him to support him and to say “We are here for you”? You know, we are living in critical times when we can no longer live independently. We must depend upon one another to help us, because times are dark and they are getting even darker. The question is: are we willing to stand for Christ? What’s very interesting is that there are people today who come to us from Russia, who see what is happening, and they are warning us. They’re saying the same thing happened in the Soviet Union, when loud enthusiasm for the cause was more important than your competency, than your education, than your existence itself.
I’m going to end today by giving you a word of encouragement and a reminder of the fact that we need heroes who are willing to stand against the culture. Solzhenitsyn was a hero like that. Actually he lost his faith. He became a communist. But later on, when he was in prison, a doctor led him back to faith in Jesus Christ. Solzhenitsyn said later, “Oh God, You were with me even when I didn’t realize it.” Now I want to leave you with this today. That evening, that doctor was clubbed to death. He had no idea that he had brought a man back to faith in Christ who was going to shake the world by writing up the history of the Soviet Union. You and I have no idea of all the good that God is doing through us. We may die not understanding that we have blessed people that we never even heard of. So my encouragement to you is be faithful to your conscience and to the word of God and take the consequences.
Later on we’re going to talk about the role of persecution for Jesus Christ and the book that I’m referring to is No Reason to Hide: Standing for Christ in a Collapsing Culture and in the description you’ll see a link that will give you information as to how it can be yours. Thanks so much for joining us and as for today, you just go with God.