He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Colossians 1: 13, 14

In Christ we are redeemed! That means that we were purchased out of a life-ending existence wherein sin ruled our days and ravaged our nights, and we have been transported into the opposite form of reality in which true living exists today and eternity is our promise and our hope. This purchase that God the Father brought about was costly. Each and every life that comes into being in this world has great value and immeasurable worth, and this is true for us from that moment of conception onward. God so values being in a relationship with people that He paid the sacrificial price of giving His son, Jesus the Christ, as that ultimate and perfect payment.

Now, in Christ, we dwell in light! This is a place that is unobtainable by any other means. Jesus is the singular source of access to God’s absolute truth, wisdom, love, grace, and justice. He is the one that reconciles all of creation to its Creator, and He is the author of all that is truly good in this world. Without Christ, even the best of intentions will fall short and the best of people will fail to fully depart from the darkness of their souls. On our own we will not enter into the glorious light of God’s kingdom, for when we rely upon our own efforts and inherent goodness to do this, we will always fall short of that eternal glory.

So, through Christ we are forgiven! Our sins and failures and the ways and times of wandering away from God’s truth are set aside. Christ’s sacrificial act upon the cross has granted our escape from that life-long jail into which we were each born, and it has given freedom to all who recognize Christ as Savior and Lord. Our lives are set right with God, and we are granted the gift of new purpose for life and renewed vitality for living it. In this new life we dwell with the great King, and we are fed from His banquet table of grace, love, and truth so that we too are filled to overflowing with these Godly qualities. Thus, we can grant the gift of God’s presence to a darkened world as we bring the light of Christ’s love with us wherever our redeemed life might take our steps.   

So, faith comes through hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.

Romans 10: 17

 

Our news is filled with voices, or at least with the words of people whose opinions have a great impact on the world where we live. The expressions of these opinionated voices are followed by an unimaginable volume of others who weigh in on what the original speakers had to say and on what it means. Our society lacks for neither the expression of life-altering edict or for the flood of response to it. Wading into this stream of thoughts and ideas is something that we can’t keep ourselves from doing. It is actually important to engage with the big issues of our times and to have an opinion on them ourselves. Yet, it is very easy to get sucked under by the powerful current that this stream generates. We can lose sight of who we are and of why we were granted minds that can think and hearts that contain passion.

 

In all of the words that come our way, there are only a few that contain absolute truth. Among the vast array of voices that are speaking at any given time, only one provides life-giving answers. So, when we attempt to respond to what we hear from the basis of our own intelligence and frame our arguments out of national pride, historic understanding of governance, or a general sense of doing what is right; we will inevitably fall short of stating the whole truth as it is set out in the Word of God. Solutions for what is sick, corrupt, and demented in our society will not be achieved by having the loudest voice in the room. Our world, especially its leaders, needs only one thing in order to travel its course in a righteous arch. That is faith in the one and the only Creator God of this universe.

 

As Paul tells us, faith comes through hearing. This is the deep soaking in of the truth that flows out of the mouth of its source. This hearing is not resident in the ears or even in the neuro-pathways that lead to our brains. The hearing on view is something that happens in and with the totality of our beings. When we are confronted with the sort of anti-God thinking and the decisions that come out of it in our world, our first response needs to come out of God’s spoken and time-tested Word of Truth. The first action that we engage in should be prayer and meditation on that word. The voice that we desperately require in these times is that of God, Himself, whose Spirit will reveal to us the righteous words to utter in response to the evil that surrounds us. The times that we are in are seriously dark and ever darkening. Living well in them requires that we have faith. We must trust in the everlasting and unalterable victory of Christ over the satanic evil of this world. Additionally, we each need to answer God’s call to speak up with a voice that is filled with the gospel of Jesus Christ.