Half The World

The band, Rush, started a philosophical song, Half The World like this:

Half the world hates
What half the world does every day

This perfectly encapsulates our modern world. Still writhing from the supreme court decision that overturned Roe vs Wade, many are celebrating that some people are now restricted from abortion on demand while the other half the world is screaming about the loss of reproductive rights. I am not sure if we will ever have reconciliation over this matter. It is like many other matters in American politics. But as Christians, we should not be so focused on politics. We should rather talk about the sacrifice Christ gave to us when He redeemed up from all unrighteousness (Titus 2:14).

Our salvation is not in isolation. When we were saved, He also gave us a desire for good deeds. The deeds of a Christian are not simply trying to be do-gooders. He implanted our deeds into our minds and prepared for them before we even knew Him (Ephesians 2:10). When we think about these things, and the transformation we experience in Christ, we realize that we need not try to change people’s politics. We need to change their heart. When we are redeemed, God removes the heart of stone in our soul, the heart that screams for killing babies, the heart that hates those who disagree, a heart sick with the human condition. He removes that heart and gives us instead a heart of flesh (Ezekiel 11:19).

I personally experienced (and remember) this difference. This is the conclusion to my book about my life without Christ compared to my life with Christ (Half My Life).

Ultimately, the chief difference between my two lifestyles was the presence and absence of God. When I lived without looking to a God, life took on a different meaning. No one waited in the wings keeping an eye on me. The things that happened to me were a result of people wanting to do me harm, my own failure to protect myself, or any combination thereof. This means life without God is a life of paranoid caution. I always looked out for myself because no one else would look out for me on earth or in heaven. I had to make every opportunity happen because if I didn’t create my own opportunity, life itself would pass me by. Life without God is a life with the weight of the world on your shoulders. For sure, this weight is what pushes most people to consume drugs and alcohol. It causes most people to live life for the pleasure of weekends, but still clench the weight of the world between their fingers. This drives some people mad, and makes others neurotic academics, like myself. There is never a release unless it is intentional, like the SOMA in Brave New World, we look to our personal worlds bravely, or cowering in fear that things may spin out of control at any moment in time.

After I met Jesus, all that changed. Now, my worldview included a powerful and sovereign God who is able to bend the world to the favor of those who love Him1. A God who loves me is a God who cares. A God who is powerful is a God who can protect me, even when I am not sure how best to protect myself. The contrast in my personal outlook on life was paramount. My life before Christ was paranoid, hateful, suspicious. That is not a way to spend time on earth. But after Christ, a peace overcame me that allowed me to let down my hair in the presence of others. I set down the suspicions and learned that I could actually trust some people, particularly those of God’s household.

It’s fair to say that my negative and pessimistic attitude as a non-believer gave way to a peace and a comfort that I had only ever dreamed of. God did change every part of my life. He saw fit to instantly remove some sin. He gave me instruction on how to personally conquer other transgressions. Not that I am the perfection of positive attitude, but the fact I no longer have to be the master of my fate and the captain of my soul is enough to take the great pressures off my shoulders. What did Jesus say:

Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light (Matthew 11:28-30).

This reading was brought to my memory again as I was recently reading through the prophet Malachi. I was reminded that as Christians, we are not our own. We belong to God, being purchased by the precious blood of His son (Acts 20:28). We need to focus on that redemption with people before we fight about the rulings of the courts in our land. God will show us, however, by the ruling that was made about the difference between living for Him and living for the world. You see, the recent Dobb’s case that led to the overturning of Row vs Wade did not ban abortion, it simply sent the decision about abortion to the states to decide for themselves. In this scenario, half the states will decide to fully ban abortion while the other half will allow it. We will see a fulfillment of this prophecy:

Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord gave attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the Lord and who esteem His name. “They will be Mine,” says the Lord of hosts, “on the day that I prepare My own possession, and I will spare them as a man spares his own son who serves him.” So you will again distinguish between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him (Malachi 3:16-18).

We will see, in this nation, a great blessing for the many states who have banned the killing of babies, and we will see further decline into hell on earth for those who affirm such a thing. So let us focus on Gospel and not on the world politics.