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Faith and Works

34 In the little town of Kingston, OK (population 1,576) a new "gentleman's club" is set to open on Wednesday. This is the first one in Kingston. A few outraged citizens are hoping it will be the last.

I say a few, because, sadly, that's all it is.

I must first take issue with calling it a "gentleman's club." No respectful gentleman would step foot in such a place.

A couple of friends of mine have taken it upon themselves to organize a protest and fight the opening of this establishment. So they started talking to friends, neighbors, area business owners, and local churches. They have met a brick wall almost every direction they've turned.

Why? Where are the Christian soldiers marching off to war? Where are the men whose job it is to protect their families from influences like this? Where are the pastors, the spiritual leaders in the town?

The church members and pastors all promised that they would "pray about it" but they didn't feel right attending a public protest. Why not? Maybe they aren't thinking about the magnitude of this little club. Maybe they're not thinking of the long-term effects of even a handful of men going into a place of sexual perversion.

Sexual sin and perversion always start small, but it is a dangerous road to start down. Focus on the Family does an excellent job explaining how quickly something like pornography can lead to crimes that ruin lives and families. In this case, a strip club is the small step before pornography.

If the services for sale in this club can lead to family ruin and devastation, shouldn't this be the front lines of battle for the Christians in this town?

So my friend asked me today, "How do you respond when no one is willing to step out and do something?"

I gave her the long version on the phone, but here's the short one (okay; maybe not so short):

1. Ask them: If the Puritans in England in the early 1600s had stayed home to pray about the persecution of the Church of England, would there BE an America today? (Answer: NO. They DID something. They packed up their families and, risking life and reputation, whisked their wives and children over an ocean to an unseen land to start afresh where they could worship God and raise their Children the way He led them.)

2. Ask them: If the minutemen in Colonial America had stayed home to pray about the tyranny of the King of England, would there BE a Declaration of Independence? (Answer: NO. They picked up their muskets, and dressed in their homespun work clothes, went in search of George Washington to offer their services in the Continental Army. They DID something. They had to point a gun at a British soldier to accomplish it. But if they didn't, that British soldier would shoot them.)

3. Ask them: If the Americans in the Northern states had stayed home to pray about slavery, would the slaves be free today? (Answer: Probably NOT. They DID something. They knew that for one human to own another like so much farmland was not lawful in the sight of God. So they fought a war against their fellow Americans because there was no other way. And the slaves were freed.)

4. Ask them: If the Allied Forces in the 1940's had stayed home to pray about Hitler and his slaughter of the Jews, would there have been a VE Day? (Answer: No. They DID something. They invaded Germany, causing Hitler to take his own life and the Germans to surrender. They freed the captives of the prison camps, and the others in hiding were allowed to come out into the daylight again. They had to fight a war to accomplish it.)

Now, at this point, you may think I am making light of prayer. I certainly am not. I pray almost constantly everyday, about every situation that arises. But there are many situations that require me to put works with my faith and DO SOMETHING.

My dear Christians, please do not sit by and watch our country fall into ruin one tiny incident at a time. Pray, ask God to move His might hand, and then DO SOMETHING.

"For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead." James 2:26

I heard Elisabeth Elliot say something along these lines when listening to an old recording of her radio show. She said (and I paraphrase), "God doesn't do my dishes for me. God doesn't clean my bedroom. God doesn't write my books." She explained that God gives us the ability to do good works, but it's up to us to use that ability.

Are you prepared to fight a battle? Our battles are much easier today. We aren't asked to take up weapons or leave our homeland. We are only asked to speak out, possibly risking a couple of hours a week and maybe even our reputation.

Yikes! Can you do it?

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