The Wall Street Journal, in their feature article yesterday, says "the new polarization" caused by President Trump "is hardening."
The feature article is based on a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll that shows 9 in 10 Republicans now support Trump, while 9 in 10 Democrats now oppose him. And "they're locked in," so he will likely be ineffective.
However, a new survey just out by Barna Research reveals a picture beyond politics---one that may be a bit disappointing at the moment to Christians, but offers a solution to what the WSJ calls the "hardening."
The essence of the Wall Street Article titled, "As Donald Trump Heads to Congress, A New Polarization is Hardening" (a reference to the president's speech to Congress last night) is summed up with this in their conclusion--"The bottom line is this: Political polarization helped produce the voter anger that in turn produced President Trump. A new version of the same old cycle may be starting."
The key word is "may."
I was personally left to believe the WSJ article concludes it isn't "may", but "will."
The article says that it once seemed that Democrats would actually agree with the president's "impulse to spend hundreds of billions of dollars on job producing infrastructure projects, or his quest for a new path on trade-- but now asks if that possibility has evaporated"-- implying it has.
The Journal says that while the president "may be able to muscle through the Republicans big changes to the Affordable Care Act, a broad tax cut, billions of dollars to fund that controversial wall...and a big jump in military spending...some Republicans are squeamish about the details...." and on and on the article goes.
It says these risks could be greatly diminished if the president would find common ground with the Democrats.
Translated---if he would stop appointing conservatives, many of whom are devout Christians, to the highest Cabinet posts and advancing conservative policies in favor of so-called "moderate Republicans and compromised policies," we would cease to be polarized and would be able to make progress.
How many of our Founding biblical values would need to be compromised before the far Left secular progressives would join the Republican conservatives and Christians? How many policies would need to be revised to advance a socialist agenda to "find common ground?"
This article defines the problem, but offers a tired, weak and obsolete solution, in my opinion, because the solution doesn't lie in the politics.
Our politics reflect the deep spiritual divide that exists in our beloved country. The WSJ seems to see the problem, but not the solution.
Two very different, and opposing worldviews.
And speaking of worldviews.
George Barna's organization has just released the first of what will be an annual survey revealing how many people in America say they have a biblical worldview, and how many actually "have" a biblical worldview that impacts the way they live, and their choices.
He says, "It's very important to know how many people have a biblical worldview because people's behavior is driven by their beliefs---we do what we believe. In other words," Barna says, "our world view determines the choices we make and the resulting actions we take."
He says, "Everyone has a worldview. The critical question is 'which one' people have embraced. If we want to transform our culture, then we will need to change the choices people make that produce that culture. And in order to change those choices, we must identify the beliefs that led to those choices."
This survey, the first of its kind, used 20 questions about core spiritual beliefs and 20 questions assessing behavior.
Those who answered 80% or more of the questions in accordance with biblical principles are included in what Barna calls "Integrated Disciples." Those he considers to have a biblical worldview, the others he considers not to have a biblical worldview, even though they may claim to hold a biblical worldview.
Barna is very sensitive to the fact that some may accuse him of "judging" Christians, which he is not, but feels this is vitally important for the times in which we live---because the opportunity to advance the Lord's work and Kingdom is so great.
Therein is the solution to the "hardening" in our culture.
It is a spiritual battle---not a political one.
The bad news is that Barna found that only 10% of American adults actually have a biblical worldview, even though 46% claim to hold a biblical worldview.
There are about 244 million adults in our country, so numerically there would be about 24 million who actually hold a biblical worldview, and about 112 million who claim (or even believe) they hold a biblical worldview, but their actions and behavior reveal they don't actually live out biblical teaching in their lives.
That's a gap among those who claim to believe the Bible and those who actually make choices according to the Bible of about 88 million people.
Here's the good news.
Whether or not President Trump unifies Congress (as moderates are calling on him to do), he is appointing many deeply committed Christians to the highest posts in government---the Vice President, the Attorney General, the Education Secretary, Ben Carson (HUD) and many others who would be among Barna's 24 million.
With these people and the staff members they will hire, there is the rise of a strong Christian presence inside the government of the United States.
With the policies President Trump has already put in place, or in many cases Obama policies he has already revoked regarding moral issues---transgender, etc., the stage is being set for Christians---not government---to be more effectively engaged in the culture than in recent years.
This is not a time for compromise in some elusive search for common ground in regard to cultural and spiritual matters.
It is, however, a time to engage in reclaiming the culture by becoming involved in it--- from becoming part of small town councils---to city councils, to school boards, local committees, to running for elected office, to advocating biblical principles that shape our behavior to friends and family.
And it is a time to live out your biblical worldview in your personal life. Allow your choices to be led by your biblical beliefs.
Jesus put it like this: "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven." (Matthew 5:16)
In love, encourage friends and family who identify as "Christian" but have embraced the deceptions of the so-called religious Left---embracing same-sex "marriage" under the guise of 'love" and "equality" and abortion under the guise of a "woman's choice" and believing the lie about "the stranger" as a reason to destroy this nation by removing the borders---to reconsider what the Bible actually says.
Love them. Pray for them. Talk to them. Let your light so shine...
This is also a time to reach out to those who claim a biblical worldview but have drifted away from their faith --- their first love.
I believe with all my heart that this is an appointed time to reclaim the culture and advance the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven.
And it begins with me. And you.
Not President Trump, Vice President Pence or any of the other devout Christians in a high position in this current administration. They have their role to play, and so do you and me.
I believe they will put in place policies that will stop the war on Christianity and turn this nation toward the faith and principles of our Founding Fathers.
But it is you and me who will actually advance the Kingdom of God and the Gospel that transforms lives and cultures--- and melts the "hardening" in our nation.
Be Faithful. Be Active. Be Bold. Be Blessed.