Godlessness is not something to be celebrated
You may have heard the old song, “God Bless America”. It was a patriotic song written by Irving Berlin during World War I and revised by him in the lead up to World War II. The song begins, “God bless America, land that I love. Stand beside her and guide her. Through the night with the light from above.” Well, never mind God Bless America, it now appears to be Godless America.
A recent article in the Los Angeles Times is headlined, “Why America’s Record Godlessness is Good News for the Nation.” The article goes on to say:-
The secularization of US society – the waning of religious faith, practice and affiliation – is continuing at a dramatic and historically unprecedented pace. While many may consider such a development as cause for concern, such a worry is not warranted. This increasing godlessness in America is actually a good thing, to be welcomed and embraced.
Democratic societies that have experienced the greatest degrees of secularization are among the healthiest, wealthiest and safest in the world, enjoying relatively low rates of violent crime and high degrees of well-being and happiness. Clearly, a rapid loss of religion does not result in societal ruin.
As we have come to understand, Christianity is not about “religion”, it is about relationship – a personal (not national) relationship with Jesus Christ. So, to us, “religion” does not mean anything. Our hope, our love, our focus is on the Person of Jesus Christ. So, what is the “rapid loss of religion” that the LA Times is referring to? It refers to a recent Gallup poll that indicated Americans who are members of a church, synagogue or mosque are no longer the majority for the first time since polling began in 1937. The article goes on to laud “organic secularization”, which occurs over time as generation after generation loses touch with their faith. The article claims:-
Organic secularization can occur for many reasons. It happens when members of society become better educated, more prosperous and live safer, more secure and more peaceful lives; when societies experience increases in social isolation; when people have better healthcare; when more women hold paying jobs; when more people wait longer to get married and have kids. All of these, especially in combination, can decrease religiosity.
So, the connotation is that as mankind “advances”, the need for God diminishes. However, political scientists also claim that there are many factors which have caused people to turn against Christianity in particular. The main reasons involve the rise of the so-called religious right, the outcry against the evangelical-Republican alliance, the anti-gay agenda (which exists only in the mind of agitators) and the Catholic Church’s sexual abuse scandals.
The author ends by saying:-
The organic secularization we are experiencing in the United States is a progressive force for good, one that is associated with improved human rights, more protections for planet Earth and an increased sociocultural propensity to make this life as fair and just as we can – in the here and now – rather than in a heavenly reward that fewer and fewer of us believe in.
America will soon bear the fruit of its decision to turn its back on the One who raised it into the nation it is. And the results will be almost unthinkable to most.