Welcome to the Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast where we consider different perspectives on what is happening in our culture and apply a biblical worldview. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III. This is episode #27.
This episode is titled, The Church in Tumult Can be a Church Triumphant
A recent Gallup poll indicates that Americans’ trust in traditional institutions remains remarkably low. Overall, only 32% of Americans say they have a high level of confidence in 14 major institutions. Over the past two years, confidence has fallen in ten of those institutions, including the church, hospitals, the presidency, the Supreme Court, public schools, the financial system, and the media. For Christians, the good news (for now) is that the church ranks higher on the confidence index than many other institution, coming in third behind only the military and the police.
The bad news, however, is that confidence in the church is on the decline. According to Christianity Today, “Pastors represented the most-trusted profession when Gallup began surveying Americans on career ethics; after three years of record-lows, clergy now rank 8th on the list.” Gallup said, “Less than half of Americans think religious leaders have high ethical standards.”
Thanks to the political upheaval of 2016 and global uncertainty spurred by events such as Brexit, Russia’s aggressiveness toward Europe, and repeated terror attacks by Islamic extremists in places like England, France, and Belgium, many in the world have been left wondering who they can trust for guidance and direction. On TV there are, in the words of one writer, an abundance of “people who specialise in being very concerned about matters over which they have no control.” Those in government go on with their Very Important Meetings and emerge with plans for little viable action. It’s no wonder that trust in the national news media stands at 28% and trust in the government is at 38%.
This, incidentally, is a golden opportunity for the Church. Founded on the rock of Christ, the Church remains steady over the winds and waves of our tempestuous times. She has a clear vision and mission, one that is not influenced by current events — and that is to winning souls and “making disciples.” While members of the media wring their hands and go off on either witch hunts or sycophantic rants; while politicians twist and conspire and outright lie to advance their agendas; while activists on the right and the left throw up their hands in uncertainty and dismay; while governments appear impotent against threats to life, liberty, and national security, the Church has no such misgivings. Christ has given us our orders. And if we follow them, without getting waylaid by current affairs, we will come out of this seemingly perpetually tumultuous season stronger and better than before.
The tumult of the world does not have to affect the church. History has shown us that the Church has endured similar instances before — the conflicts of ancient Rome when emperors resolved “to tear down the churches to the foundations and to destroy the Sacred Scriptures by fire.” The Church survived the Dark Ages which threatened to wipe learning and literature from the faith of the earth. The Church survived the Enlightenment when its very foundations were being attacked intellectually and philosophically. And, the Church will survive this present age — whatever historians will decide to call it — because Jesus declared that “the gates of hell will not prevail against it.”
While the rest of the world reels with distrust and uncertainty, the Church should be the steady beacon of light, hope, truth, and guidance that the world so desperately needs.
In closing, let me leave you with some Scripture and a quote to think about.
Matthew 5:14-16 says, “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”
G.K. Chesterton said, “We do not want a church that will move with the world. We want a church that will move the world.”
In light of what we have discussed today, I want to remind you that in our ever-changing world, there is one Person who never changes. That person is Jesus Christ. The Bible says that He is “the same yesterday, today, and forever.” He is not subject to the whims of society or popular opinion. He has an unchanging, eternal love for you. If you do not know Him as your Savior, I encourage you to get to know Him today. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Thank you for listening to this Torch Leadership Cross in Culture Podcast.
Visit us online at www.torchleadershipfoundation.com
Until we meet again, remember to keep Christ first in our ever-changing culture.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.