June 10, 2020 Ashley Steelman

Revelation Not Revolution

Revelation Not Revolution

The Greek word for apocalypse means "revelation", "an unveiling or unfolding of things not previously known and which could not be known apart from the unveiling", “to uncover.” So an apocalyptic event or vision reveals things as they really are.


What we are seeing now is, I believe, an apocalyptic event — not as in  “the end of the world” apocalypse but in the sense that it uncovered or revealed cracks in our social and political landscapes many of us did not/do not want to face.


We are a deeply divided nation. We live in a climate of neo-Manichaeism. What is the way forward? How can we as believers in Christ respond in a way that leads to healing and increased unity? Is it even possible at this point?


21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.Romans 12:21


 I feel out of step. I’m emotional and conflicted. I feel helpless and hopeless. I see people I love defending the indefensible based on loyalty to political parties and causes. Others remain deaf and dumb.


Voicing any opposition to the mob or its current agenda has become social taboo or can even be interpreted as betrayal. With people quick to jump to conclusions and even quicker to air their grievances on social media, the idea of “cancel culture” is a breeding ground for toxicity that hides behind fake moral righteousness. The victimology on the far left and the triumphalism on the far right makes me sick to my stomach. 


I find myself struggling to find the words to make sense of what is happening around me, the means of resistance to imitate, and the encouragement for pressing on. 


Revolution is in the air. But revolution is not what we need. We need revelation.  


Our only option is to turn to God and His word. 


God is so good to Israel, to those whose hearts are pure. 2 But I almost slipped and lost my balance. I almost fell into sin. 3 I saw that wicked people were successful,  and I became jealous of those proud people. 


 4 They are healthy. They don’t have to struggle to survive. 5 They don’t suffer like the rest of us. They don’t have troubles like other people. 6 So they are proud and hateful. This is as easy to see as the jewels and fancy clothes they wear.


7 If they see something they like, they go and take it.  They do whatever they want. 8 They make fun of others and say cruel things about them.  In their pride they make plans to hurt people. 9 They think they are gods! They think they are the rulers of the earth.


10 Even God’s people turn to them and do what they say. 11 Those evil people say, “God does not know what we are doing!  God Most High does not know!”


12 Those proud people are wicked, but they are rich and getting richer. 13 Clearly, then, I gain nothing by keeping my thoughts pure! What good is it to keep myself from sin?14 God, I suffer all day long, and you punish me every morning.


15 I wanted to tell others these things, but that would have made me a traitor to your people. 16 I tried hard to understand all this, but it was too hard for me. 17 But then, God, I went to your Temple, and I understood what will happen to the wicked.


18 Clearly, you have put them in danger. You make it easy for them to fall and be destroyed. 19 Trouble can come suddenly, and they will be ruined. Terrible things can happen to them, and they will be finished. 20 Then they will be like a dream   that we forget when we wake up. You will make them disappear like the monsters in our dreams.


21-22 I was so stupid. I thought about such people and became upset. God, I was upset and angry with you! I acted like a senseless animal. 


23 But I am always with you.  You hold my hand. 24 You lead me and give me good advice,  and later you will lead me to glory. 25 In heaven, God, I have only you.  And if I am with you, what on earth could I want? 26 Maybe my mind and body will become weak,  but God is my source of strength.  He is mine forever! 

27  God, people who leave you will be lost.  You will destroy all who are not faithful to you. 28 As for me, all I need is to be close to God. I have made the Lord God my place of safety.  And, God, I will tell about all that you have done. Psalms 73 ERV

 

“I tried hard to understand all this, but it was too hard for me.  But then, God, I went to your Temple, and I understood what will happen to the wicked.”


Revelation is a far greater force than revolution. We can not continue to say, act,or do as we see fit. Man is the only creature who refuses to submit to the revealed will of his Creator.


We sow the very seeds of our own sorrow!!!!


We know exactly what the Lord has revealed and exactly what he expects of us as a result. But we continue to play around with concocting all sorts of half-baked notions that maybe we have misunderstood His meaning or His commands in the hope of somehow avoiding them -OR we just flat out ignore Him in arrogance, anger, and pride. All that comes of it is pain. 


14 We all fell to the ground, and I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, ‘Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’  Acts 26:14


The wickedness we see now is an outward display of what is hidden inside. The things that need changing ain’t out there y’all. The things that need changing are right in our own hearts. Until we get on our faces we are just kicking against the goads.


We don’t need revolution. We need revelation.