Introductory note by Ken Gentry:
In the article below you will find an analysis of the decline of Christianity in America and a proposal for engaging the post-Christian culture we now face. As a postmillennialist I believe Christ’s gospel will one day dominate the world as the major personal, social, and cultural influence among men. We have seen its power in the past, but we are witnessing its decline in the present. This is a tragedy that needs to be reversed, and will be reversed — according to Scripture.
In this regard postmillennialists must take heart by remembering three things:
(1) The postmillenial hope unfolds gradually over time, with fits-and-starts, like the individual’s personal sanctification. We should not look at the crisis of the moment and despair regarding the future. After all, “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field; and this is smaller than all other seeds, but when it is full grown, it is larger than the garden plants” (Matt 13:31-32). We must not be newspaper exegetes; but good-news exegetes. That is, we must look to Scripture for our hope, for in it is the good news of the gospel.
(2) The prophetic hope of Scripture promises that before the end, Christ will win the victory. And we do not know when the end will be. We have no Hal Lindsey in our camp who can accurately predict it. We have no one who can write a 1980’s: Countdown to Armageddon or Planet Earth 2000 AD: Will Mankind Survive? So we must keep laboring for the Master while understanding that he holds the future in his hands. After all, “He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet” (1 Cor 15:25).
(3) God does not need America; America needs God. It may be that God is setting aside America and will let her collapse to show that . . . in fact, America does need God. We are not interested in civil religion, but biblical religion. We are seeking true revival in the churches that will overflow into the wider culture. After all, “If My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land” (2 Chron 7:14).