There is more need in this for tears than words, how the enemy of the Christian name has increased after the living words of the Son of God, after the fullness of the gospels, after the apostolic teaching, after the recent writing of orthodox authorities, who from the Old and New Testament have expounded in varied speech the mysteries of faith.
- Columbanus, Letter to Pope Boniface, Irish, 7th century
Do not remove the ancient landmark
Which your fathers have set.
- Proverbs 22.28
The present state of Christianity in America is, to say the least, puzzling.
On the one hand, evidence suggests a lively Christian movement is thriving. Churches, organizations, websites, schools and colleges, seminaries, publications, media outlets, and on and on continue to proliferate and prosper.
At the same time, the impact of this considerable presence on the larger culture and society seems almost negligible. On every hand, ungodliness and moral evil have increased, and the rate of population growth is greater than the rate of increase in believers. Indeed, many reports indicate that the ranks of the faithful are declining, as people abandon the Christian faith for other faiths, primarily secular and narcissistic materialism.
Further, it’s becoming clear that our society is beginning to look askance at the Christian presence and heritage in the land.
What does it say about the Christianity we profess, that we have not salted and leavened our society and culture any more effectively? That we have allowed the ancient landmarks established by our forebears to be moved by those who worship the gods of this secular age?
Apparently, the faith that many – if not most – Christians profess and practice has little power to bring the beauty, goodness, and truth of Christ into the great moral, ethical, cultural, and social issues of the day. In the generations leading up to America’s founding, faith in Christ made its presence known in every area of life. In homes and families, communities, workplaces, schools, laws, the arts, and the halls of government, one was never very far from the overt presence of some Christian or Biblical testimony, guideline, precept, or law. The landmarks which defined the moral, social, and cultural borders of pre-revolutionary colonial society were poured with the cement of Scripture and the Gospel.
Today, as is patently clear, all that has changed. While the percentage of Christians in our society remains about the same as during the colonial period, the character of the faith we profess has dramatically changed. We have substituted a gospel of personal peace and hope for the Gospel of the Kingdom.
And this gospel, which is another gospel from what our forebears knew, has little power for turning our nation rightside-up for the Lord.
“There is more need in this for tears than words.” Columbanus saw the same thing in Gaul in his day, early in the 7th century. He wrote to the head of the churches in Gaul, pleading with him to lead the Lord’s flocks back to health and faithful witness.
Perhaps it’s time for us to do the same?
Ours is a time for tears, brethren. The ancient landmarks of our forebears have been moved, and the faith we are living today is not a faith that will turn our world rightside-up for Jesus Christ.
We need tears of repentance and pleading with God for revival, renewal of our mission, and awakening of our nation to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
Will you plead and weep before Him this day?
Psalm 80.1-3, 7, 19 (St. Theodulph: All Glory, Laud, and Honor)
O God of grace, restore us, and shine on us Your face!
O save us, Lord, work for us; renew us by Your grace!
Give ear, O gracious Savior, Who leads us as Your flock;
Stir up Your pow’r and favor, our King and Lord and Rock!
Lord, forgive every way I have failed to please You, and every good I have omitted to do in Your Name, and help me today to…
How to pray for revival
Our book, Restore Us!, provides a concise explanation of why and how to begin praying for revival. It includes prayer sheets, based on 12 psalms, to guide you in this important work. Begin with yourself, until you are praying every day for God to bring revival. Then enlist some friends to meet weekly or monthly to unite your voices in seeking the Lord for revival. Click here to order your copy of Restore Us! today. Buy one for your pastor, too, and urge him to lead your congregation in praying faithfully for revival.
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T. M. Moore, Principal
All Psalms for singing from The Ailbe Psalter. Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
 Walker, p. 51.