The Old Note That Showed Up Inauguration Eve
A note that tumbled out of an old bible found at an estate sale offers a timely message for today.
We sold our spare car last Tuesday. Well, I didn’t. God and my wife did. Given what an inept slacker I’d been at getting our faithful Mazda Tribute sold, Rusty was praying someone would just walk up and offer to buy it. Prayer answered.
Yeah. Really. A young man was helping his younger sister get an old but reliable SUV. A vehicle in our neighborhood they’d come to see didn’t work out. They spotted ours in the driveway looking like it hadn’t been driven in months and came a’knocking.
The sale meant cleaning out the car. That night, I was going through a bag of old bible-themed books I had purchased at an estate sale. Books that had never quite made it into the house.
Out dropped a piece of paper, roughly 3 x 4 inches. Dated “June 54,” it appears to be a hand-written reflection on Philippians 1:27.
I was stunned by the words that floated down through decades of time to land at my feet on the very eve of the Inauguration. Right as I — and so many tens of millions — wrestled with the prospect of a new and hostile regime.
Continue to discharge your obligations as citizens and residents of Philippi faithfully and as a Christian should; but do not yield to the patriotic pressure to give to Nero that which belongs to Christ alone.
Remember that while you members of a Roman colony, you are also a colony of heaven from which you are awaiting the return of your divine Lord and Savior.
So stand firm. Never waver in the conflict. You may have to suffer for Christ, but remember that he is your deliverer too.
How to Deal with Our New Nero
Of all the topics in all the world one could have been writing about … some 67 years ago! Of all the days for it to be found: on the eve of the installation of our new Nero. I will even suggest the timing was divine, the SUV sale a divine trick to get that note in my hand on that particular day.
So many are struggling with how to react to this new regime hell-bent on wrecking so much of what we hold dear. A leader, like Nero, openly condemning us, scapegoating us for actions we had no part in. The country burns from leftist violence while Biden fiddles with efforts to target us as “domestic terrorists.”
We Must Not Yield
Yes, the note says, we must resolve to “discharge our obligations” as faithful citizens. We must remain law abiding. We must continue to serve our communities and nation as we are led and called. We must perform our civic duty and vote … even when convinced the vote is meaningless. We must pray for our leaders.
However, we must not yield to the pressure from the media, Big Tech and the left to worship government, not God. We cannot put aside our commitment to God and Godly principles just to get along during Nero’s reign. We cannot forsake our citizenship in the “colony of heaven.” We serve our neighbors, not the Swamp.
We must “have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.” (Ephesians 5:11) We must fight tooth-and-nail against efforts to silence our voices. We must protect our unalienable rights and the innocent. We must push for policies and leaders dedicated to peace and prosperity.
We cannot suppress the roar of the King. We cannot stop advancing the Kingdom of God.
We must stand firm, never wavering.
Standing Firm, Never Wavering
And we must stand together as brothers and sisters.
Specific, calculated effort was made during the election to divide the body of Christ. The sudden push to declare support for Trump a threat to gospel witness wasn’t spiritual. It was strategic. “You’re a bad Christian if you vote for the candidate who will best implement the policies you believe will protect life, ease suffering, bring prosperity and secure religious liberty.” That was the most deceptive bit of advertising since “Drinking this beer will land you the hot babe.”
Since the election, I’ve seen more angst within the church over other church members than I’ve seen over the clear and present threat to “Philippi” from those who openly warfare against God and America’s Founding Principles. We’re the siblings so busy sniping at each other from room to room, we don’t even notice the blowtorches at our door.
In a Manner Worthy
The house unaware will be consumed. The house divided cannot stand. The note in my hand, nearly seven decades old, is a declaration for today.
Philippians 1:27 itself, a marching order for these new, maddening, threatening times:
Only, live your life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that, whether I come and see you or am absent and hear about you, I will know that you are standing firm in one spirit, striving side by side with one mind for the faith of the gospel.
Al Perrotta is the Managing Editor of The Stream and co-author, with John Zmirak, of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Immigration. You can follow him at @StreamingAl on Twitter and Parler, if his Twitter account is restored and Parler is allowed to again exist. You can also follow him @Streaming on Gab and MeWe.