By Reverend Mark Hunnemann
Less than 80 years ago, our country had a Christian consensus.Virtually anyone could have expressed what the basic Christian beliefs were , even if they did not believe it themselves. Let me stop here for a moment, and state that I want to set this debate about the existence of ghosts in a larger context--namely as part of the very rapid cultural decline that has taken place.In order to accomplish this, we must set this debate regarding ghosts within the context of the spirit of our age.What is the prevailing spirit that is driving American culture into a deadly decline? (In my book I set this debate within the context of the clash of differing worldviews and antithetical epistemologies...that is, objective truth versus relatavisitic truth, and how the bible is REALLY true when it speaks about any subject matter--including science and history).
In the last 80 years or so years there has been a mad rush in our society to achieve autonomous freedom-- that is the spirit of the age that is napalming every segment of society. It is the drive to throw of the restraints of the God of the bible.It is search for freedom, but the autonomous aspect means getting rid of the restraints of the God of truth as well as the truth of God. A deliberate rejection of God and His law or morality. Hence, treasured aspects of our culture are destroyed almost overnight. In Romans 1:18f the Lord tells us that, since our country once did know the truth, but willingly rejected it, we are being punished for it. Let me quote my hero Francis Schaeffer, "But if we are looking across the history of the world to see those times when men knew the truth and turned away, let us say emphatically that there is not an exhibition of this anywhere in history so clearly--and in such a short time--as in our own generation." (The Great Evangelical Disaster)
I graduated from high school in 1974, and the changes in our country since then have been enormous...what were once vices are now embraced as virtues.It is a terrible thing for a 60 year old man like me to see how far we have declined in such a short time.It makes me weep.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.(Eph. 6:12) Does the church in the twenty-first century of America really believe we are engaged in this cosmic battle? Again Schaeffer, If we do not believe these things(and we must say that much of the evangelical world acts as if it does not believe these things), we certainly cannot expect to have much success in fighting the battle. Why doesn't the church have more impact on our culture? Because we have not taken the primary battle seriously.And because we don't take this supernatural warfare seriously, we don't use the weapons our Lord has provided (Ephesians. 6:10-18) Without these weapons we have no hope of winning
As a consequence of rejecting the truth, Paul says in Romans 1:18-25 that their (our) thinking or reasoning processes becomes foolish and distorted.The reason I went into such detail in my book about adopting a Christian worldview is that foolish or distorted thinking is flourishing, not only in non-Christians, but in Christians as well. The result has been disasterous. We deserve, and are, under the wrath of God as a country...I say that with tears....
Because we have rejected the one, true God in a manic, depraved quest for autonomous freedom, our nation is now characterized by foolish thinking (and the long list of degradations Paul mentions)--we are drowning in relativistic reasoning--AND God's anger is being poured out upon America.The last few generations have trampled upon the truth of God as well as the God of truth.We are seeing, right now, the outworking of this depraved thinking and acting. Do you think we can slaughter this many unborn children and not anger the Holy One of Israel?
An indicator of how few Christians think like Christians is the recent election. How many Christians viewed abortion as the primary issue? Very few. As important as the economy is, what can come even close to the significance of protecting human life? LIFE, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness?!
We are still made in God's image and have a visceral desire for spiritual reality...even if we have rejected the God whose image we are made in. All of this frenzied quest for unfettered freedom from God and His moral absolutes, has left us in a spiritual void or wasteland. That is where ghosts come into the picture. I will develop this them further next time, but suffice it to say that Satan has developed this scheme masterfully.
Having rejected the true God, we have replaced Him and the bible with the satisfaction of immediate contact with the supernatural. Our Christ-less culture has become irrational. Instead of truth we seek experience with the paranormal And where is the church?
Martin Luther (or somebody) said, If I profess with loudest voice and clearest exposition every portion of the truth of God except precisely that little point which the world and the Devil are at that moment attacking, I am not confessing Christ, however boldly I may be professing Christ. Where the battle rages, there the loyalty of the soldier is proved and to be steady on all the battle front besides, is mere flight and disgrace if he flinches at that point.
Preachers preach on everything but that little point where the Devil is attacking.
Where are the sermons on the bible and ghosts? Again, I insist, where are the messages on the bible and spiritism? Because the church has flinched, it is not confessing Christ. It remains dogged in her dismissiveness of this topic (some rare exceptions). It has not engaged the spirit of this age.....again. Yes, of course there are many other important issues and topics. Our culture will become increasingly demonized if we don't bring the truth and light on this subject.I love the church and I love pastors. The Bride is committing adultery with the world. Lord, please have mercy on us. And pastors..... PREACH!
Read The Great Evangelical Disaster, Part 2 Loving Confrontation
Mark Hunnemann is the author of Seeing Ghosts Through God's Eyes: A Worldview Analysis of Earthbound Spirits. It's also available in eBook format.