“A Christian never submits to his enemies. I knew a Christian in a solitary cell where there was room for only three steps to and fro. He never made three steps but only two. He — not his jailors — decided what he had to do.” – Richard Wurmbrandt
This type of ferocious pugnacity does not exist in the American church. Perhaps it once did, but it has been outsourced by men in thousand-dollar suits and their big-haired wives to forsaken corners of this globe where an affirmation of faith in Christ is accompanied by a freshly-inked fatwa and a horde of torch-waving lunatics. Charlatans have taken the Lord’s directive to love our enemies as a command to capitulate eternal truth, in the hopes of avoiding any bruising to the (literally) damned beliefs held by the sea of lost and dying non-believers which surround us. The empty suits which front the American church today are more interested in glad-handing the crowd around them than stepping on some toes to carry the Living Water to those who are dying of desiccation.
Why is this? We have had stalwart men of faith in this country historically. Men like George Whitefield, Peter Muhlenburg, John Wise, Jonas Clark, D.L. Moody, Chuck Colson, Billy Graham, and Franklin Graham today. It is not that the American heart is incompatible with the fiber of Christian tenacity and courage. It is clear that this country breeds courageous men and women and also that Christianity is spread far and wide, albeit in a very shallow variety. So why is there such little intestinal fortitude from the pews these days?
To start with the obvious, the American church is less manly because it contains fewer men. As a number of friends who are pastors have told me, walk into any church on a Sunday morning and you will be astonished at the paucity of male congregants. According to a Barna survey tracking 20 years of church statistics, 44% of American women attend church regularly but only 36% of American men, sinking 11 percentage points and 6 percentage points respectively over the past 20 years. When God is presented as a hippy-genie who exists to hug your sin away and join your drum circle against intolerance, is it any wonder that men are choosing Howie, Jimmy, and Terry over Potiphar, Peter, and Paul?
We have been weakened, as men and as Christians. We are taught that conflict is always bad and appeasement is a virtue. That we should “agree to disagree” with those who hold erroneous beliefs instead of probing their metaphysical underpinnings in the hopes of provoking greater understanding and a curiosity about a God Who tells the end from the beginning. That war is always bad and peace is always good. That weapons are evil and evil is misunderstood (except in the case of weapons which are just evil). As men, we have allowed eggheads and feminists to pump our communities full of toxic liberalism to the tune of 50 million aborted lives, skyrocketing single-motherhood, sexual perversion peddled to children under the auspices of “education”, and rabid Islamofacism widely viewed as the religion of peace.