Bits and Pieces

“The basic problem of Christians in this country,” says Francis Schaeffer in A Christian Manifesto, “in regard to society and in regard to government, is that they have seen things in bits and pieces instead of totals.”

Furthermore, Christians have very gradually “become disturbed over permissiveness, pornography, the public schools, the breakdown of the family, and finally abortion. But they have not seen this as a totality — each thing being a part, a symptom of a much larger problem. They have failed to see that all of this has come about due to a shift in the world view — that is, through a fundamental change in the overall way people think and view the world as a whole.”

So, what is this “much larger problem”?

6 Comments on “Bits and Pieces”

  1. Josh R

    The underlying problem is Godlessness.

    There is a tendency to try to battle sin using tactics of legislation, litigation, intimidation. Even if these efforts succeed, forced repentance isn’t really repentance. The person who now cannot practice their sin feels oppressed, not liberated. The learn nothing about God.

    The best way to address these issues it to introduce people to the living God, who changes hearts one at a time.

  2. The Reformed Pastor

    The main underlining problem in society? The unwillingness and ignorance to worship the one true God where He wants to be worshiped, and how He wants to be worshiped.

    We must believe God for who He is, not what we want Him to be. Looking for God is not like looking for a car. One tells the car dealer what type of car they want. What color the car needs to be. What features he wants and the price he would like it at. Then he gets the car that he specifically pick-out. No, God is no way like that. God is who he is! We are commanded to bow our knees to God, regardless to what we want Him to be. If we do not, and choose to rebel. We will face the His all consuming wrath. God will be worship for who His!

    God, also, has ordained the place that he will be worshiped. Under the garments of divine righteousness, given by the Son, on account of faith! Only by faith in His Son’s sufficient, wrath satisfying, and sin atoning sacrifice can one be in the correct place of worship. All our ground is sinking sand. Unholy Sinking sand. Sand that is in the presence of idols! Only by losing confidence in ourselves and put all our confidence in the Savior, Jesus Christ, bowing under the foot of the cross, are we in the true place of worship.

    And how are we to worship? By thankfully, delightfully, submitting our wills to the commands of Christ. Motivated by the mercy of God, we place ourselves under Jesus’ feet, like Mary, eagerly waiting to hear the words that flow from our Lord‘s mouth. Desiring to glorify Him by obedience.

    In essence, Our culture is blind to the glories of Christ found in the gospel. Worshiping God for who He is where we must , how we should.

  3. David Ketter

    We have to remember that Schaeffer says this as he looks at a nation speaking from a modernist perspective. Schaeffer was the first to lead Christians to speak in the language of that culture, to engage it and speak from modernism. A prophetic voice, no doubt, but does it surprise you that many postmodern Christians take their cue from Schaeffer’s example?

    The underlying problem is not immorality (for how could a God-less society know to act otherwise?) or selfishness (for how could those who do not know that they are to DIE to self think otherwise?) or even ignoring the glory of the Gospel (for how could they ignore it unless it is preached to them?). The underlying problem is that WE, the CHURCH, have not borne a consistent witness. We have sought political answers to a spiritual problem. Rather than bearing the Cross of Christ, we have determined to bring His Kingdom by our own works and ideas of righteousness. We have looked so far beyond the Cross into the future glory of the children of God (Romans) that we’ve lost what it means to bear that Cross before men. It is like Peter tells the Church in his letter: “He [God] is patient with YOU, desiring that none should perish, but for all to come to repentance.” The Holy One has been patient with us as we’ve failed to serve Him truly and it is time that we stand up and show Him our zeal for His house. Are we the Church militant or not?

  4. Stacy

    Hey Tim. I’ve been looking into getting a Facebook…what are your opinions of it? Many of my Christian friends, who are very “anti-myspace” (lol) are on it. What do you think???

  5. RAE

    The problem Schaeffer is referring to is how the foundation for our society has dramatically shifted from its Judeo-Christian roots, and that as a whole Christians have failed to take notice. To be sure, we recognize that society has problems but we are seemingly unaware that the generally agreed upon principles (i.e. truth, justice, the common good, etc.), that this nation was founded on are no longer regarded as important or necessary. Much to our detriment, we have failed to recognize the monster for what it really is.

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