What Happens When the Church Retreats from the Culture

The American Church has for many years shut itself inside its buildings when it comes to equipping and calling our church congregants to vote. Current figures show that of the estimated 168 million registered voters in America (as of 2022),[i] 50 million self-identify as Protestant Christians”—accounting for nearly 1/3 of all prospective voters in the nation. However, only 68% of those Christians (34M) are registered to vote. Further, only 26% of Protestant Christians (8.8M) generally vote in off-year (not presidential) elections. When it comes to local elections, typically less than 4% of Protestant Christians (1.4 million) cast ballots.[ii]

In the state I live—“red” Texas—one can easily see from the recent local election results that if Christian leaders had informed their congregations of the candidates who stood for Pro-Christian Values (PCV), we could have seen huge victories in regard to the key moral issues we face today, namely:

Will our City Councils and School Boards…

  • Support parents’ rights over harmful or questionable curriculum in the classroom?
  • Remove obscene books from Texas school libraries and stop promoting Social Emotional Learning (SEL) in the classrooms?
  • Remove all Critical Race Theory (CRT) racist teaching in all forms from our classrooms?
  • Turn the focus of curriculum away from promoting social issues and return to traditional academics, i.e., reading, writing, math, science? This matters because one-third of all K-12 students in America are not proficient in reading, math, or science.[iii]

A Case Study: Collin County, North Texas:

Collin County is one of the fastest growing counties in America, and is now the third largest county in Texas. As we view the results below of several city elections held May 6, 2023,[iv] keep in mind that approximately 1.2 million potential voters live in the Collin County, but only 690,000 are registered to vote. Of those, only 12% (82,000) cast ballots in the local elections of May 6. It is estimated that approximately 155,000 Protestant Christians are registered to vote in the county, but less than 4%—or 6,200—made their choices known.[v]

In short, out of the 82,000 ballots cast, only 6,200 Protestant Christians participated in a county of 1.2 million people, though 155,000 Christians are registered! If those Christians had voted—biblically—we would have swept every election by a landslide. But because we barely took part in this great privilege and duty, thousands of Collin County K-12 students will be saturated with sexual orientation and racist ideologies, damaging them for life and adding more fuel to the fires burning down the moral pillars of our nation.   

In the city of McKinney—one of the fastest-growing cities in Texas[vi]—2 of the 3 Pro-Christian Values (PCV) school board candidates as defined above lost by 500 votes (14%) out of an average of only 3500 votes cast. The 3rd candidate lost by 4,000 votes—less than 25% of the 17,000 total votes split between 3 candidates. In a city of over 200,000 residents and over 80 churches, what does this say?

The city of Frisco—the fastest-growing city in Texas—didn’t do much better. The 2 PCV school board candidates each lost by 1900 votes (15%) out of an average of only 13,000 votes cast. Frisco has over 50 churches.

Similarly, Plano saw one of the two PCV school board candidates lose by only 1600 votes (14%) out of only 11,000 votes cast for the winner.

In Prosper, one of the two PCV school board candidates lost by 1200 votes (15%) out of only 16,000 votes split between four candidates. The other lost by 2500 votes out of 6,000 total votes cast. [vii]

It is manifestly clear that because our pulpits refuse to equip the saints to vote for righteousness, our families, churches, and nation is suffering. If we do not face this reality and deal with it, we will lose everything we hold dear.

Why Is This Happening?

Bad Doctrine Leads to Devastation

In Matthew 15:7-9, Jesus strongly condemns the religious leaders for imposing on the people commandments of their own design, or simply passing on traditions that were handed down from their predecessors—as if those rules were equivalent to God’s Laws. Quoting Isaiah, Christ bluntly states, “In vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.” When Jesus speaks such heavy words of condemnation to leaders and teachers of His people, it should cause men to tremble.

In our travels through the churches over many years, my family and I clearly saw the same patterns occurring throughout Christendom. We began assembling a list of what may be termed “man-made doctrines” that have been infecting our seminaries, pulpits, and churches increasingly over the last 150 years, effectively paralyzing the church. That is the subject of this article. But before we reveal a few of those man-made laws, let’s establish an even shorter list of fundamental doctrines we must agree upon in order to be on the same biblical page from the onset.

  1. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17) In this case, all means all. The Word of God is our only source of doctrine. Any principle conveyed as doctrine must be sourced in Scripture or it is a false doctrine.
  2. His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through the knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. (2 Peter 1:3)
  3. You shall not add to the word which I am commanding you, nor take away from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you … If anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book. (Deut. 4:2) This principle is repeated again in Revelation 22:18-19– If anyone adds to [the words of this book], God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book.

Thus, we are clearly commanded to live by every word in Scripture and severely warned to NOT add or subtract from God’s words. If we stray from the Word of God, the consequences are serious to the detriment of our souls. The Bible is the absolute inerrant authority for discerning truth from error. Everything else is opinion.

The “false doctrine” listed below should resonate with all to some degree. As the Scripture says: “for this has not been done in a corner.” (Acts 26:16) Most of the Body of Christ attend churches that either refuse to speak on this issue or rarely address it.

“Don’t Speak on Culture and Politics — Just Focus on the Gospel”

Our God is a God of balance, and when we leave out one half of any doctrine out of the entirety, the Church will become unstable and fall. “You shall not add to the word which I am commanding you, nor take away from it.” When churches refuse to address politics and culture, they are in effect teaching a false doctrine. Nowhere in all of Scripture is such a mandate taught. One would be hard-pressed to find any prophet or leader in the Old or New Testaments who was not deeply involved in counseling or criticizing a political figure. To not speak is to speak. To not act is to act. To not address evil is to allow evil to thrive. When the people aren’t warned about imminent danger ahead, many will be “destroyed from lack of knowledge.” (Hosea 4:6) The leaders of those churches will not be held guiltless before the Lord. According to His words—not mine—He will say “In vain have you worshiped me” because you taught as doctrine your own traditions and commandments. On that Day, He will say, “I never knew you.” (Matthew 7:22-23)

How Do We Respond?

It should be clear to all that times of chastisement and destruction are upon us today in wave after wave, leading to the inevitable conclusion that the Church must be missing something in our approach to discipleship and evangelism. What are we doing that we shouldn’t be doing? What are we not doing that we should be doing? Church leaders and congregants would be wise to step back a bit to view today’s affairs and examine ourselves and the culture through the eyes of God. Consider the lessons from Hosea, for example, and remember that God doesn’t allow sins to metastasize in the culture without drawing a line where severe judgment must come. In 1 Peter 4:17 we are forewarned, “For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?”

James 3:1 emphasizes that those who take up the mantle of teaching-leaders will receive greater judgment. “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God,” cautions Hebrews 10:31.  Our common calling as disciples and disciplers entrusted with God’s Law is not to be taken lightly or ignored. We are to be diligent not only in our study of the Word of God, but in its application to all of life—not just the areas comfortable to us. It is our high calling to inform and persuade others of God’s principles and ways, and we must be careful to avoid advocating principles that do not find their source in Scripture. The principles and precepts of God’s laws lead to success always, while man’s ways lead to failure—always. Why do we need to add or subtract from that which is perfect? There is no other worldview, religion, or ideology that can hold a candle to the biblical worldview if we would embrace it; but we must, as Jude says, “contend for the faith.” Let us not be afraid to hold our pastors—and each other—to God’s standards.  

[i] https://www.statista.com/statistics/273743/number-of-registered-voters-in-the-united-states/

[ii] https://wallbuilders.com/election-resources-information/



[v] Estimates based upon national averages.

[vi] https://www.census.gov/newsroom/press-releases/2022/fastest-growing-cities-population-estimates.html


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