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Our Culture Of Darkness

by Sandra Naugle

(A Talk Presented at Ladies Retreat)                                                                         

When my husband was administrator of Maple Manor Christian Home, he was asked by one of the staff, ‘Why do we have weeds?’   He had a short answer: SIN.

Man was expelled from a perfect world and made to toil for his food. Woman would have pain in childbirth. The sin of Adam and Eve was the catalyst for every ensuing sinful thing in this world.   We are born with a sinful nature because of what happened in the Garden.

     Psalm 36 verses 1 to 3: I have a message from God in my heart concerning the sinfulness of the wicked: There is no fear of God before their eyes. In their own eyes they flatter themselves too much to detect or hate their sin. The words of their mouths are wicked and deceitful;  they fail to act wisely or do good.

       John 8 verses 42 to 44: Jesus told them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, because I have come to you from God. I am not here on my own, but he sent me. 43Why can't you understand what I am saying? It's because you can't even hear me! 44For you are the children of your father the devil and you love to do the evil things he does. He was a murderer from the beginning. He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies.

     Job 24:13: Wicked people rebel against the light. They refuse to acknowledge its ways or stay in its paths.

     Job 34: 22: There is no darkness dark enough to hide a sinner from God.

Psalm 139: verses 13 to 16:

 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.

     Because Ray and I serve on the board of Right to Life of Southern Indiana, I am more acquainted with the evils of abortion than some of the other evils of this culture. It is the goal of our organization to educate our citizens to the sanctity of human life as ordained by God from conception to natural death.

In the USA, 55 million babies have been murdered in the womb since Roe v. Wade on January 22, 1973. The same day, Doe v. Bolton made it legal during all 9 months of pregnancy.

A majority of those who have abortions, at some point later in life, will come to greatly regret their action. Some have come to be so psychologically depressed they have taken their own lives.

Planned Parenthood is the major provider of abortions in the US. This organization was begun in 1916 when Margaret Sanger, her sister, and a friend opened America’s first abortion clinic in Brooklyn, NY. Some quotes from the Articles of ByLaws of the original organization that later became known as Planned Parenthood are very revealing: This information is meant to inform and I apologize if it shocks or offends anyone.

Article 1. The purpose of the American Baby Code shall be to provide for a better distribution of babies…

and to protect society against the propagation and increase of the unfit.
Article 4. No woman shall have the legal right to bear a child, and no

man shall have the right to become a father, without a permit…
Article 6. No permit for parenthood shall be valid for more than one birth.

Sanger’s intent was to rid the nation of ethnic groups that she felt were detrimental to a ‘pure’ race of people. Obviously, and thankfully, the original plans for this organization have not come to fruition. It was Sanger’s intent to rid our country, and then the world, of those she thought to be inferior. Over in Germany about the same time, a charismatic man was rising to power who also wanted to rid the world of those he deemed to be ‘unfit’. It was the intention of both of these evil individuals to rid the world of any race other than the ‘pure white Caucasian’ as they called it.

   How common is Infanticide? Consider the recent examples that have been brought to light in the abortion industry, first in the Gosnell trial, then in the undercover videos from Live Action, an organization dedicated to revealing what goes on in the abortion industry. Gosnell saw no problem in snipping the spines of the survivors of his late-term abortions. He was charged with murder and sentenced to prison, but he obviously saw no difference between tearing the child apart in the womb, or beheading it a few minutes after it is born. One prominent abortion proponent, a doctor, sees no reason why we should not allow children up to the age of two to be killed, if by then it is determined the child will be a detriment to society.

In undercover videos, one of the abortion facility workers very nonchalantly speaks of putting a baby that survived the abortion in a toxic solution to ensure its death. The abortionist in another video reassures the patient that he would not help the child live if it were born alive, comparing the baby to a terminally ill patient in a hospital who is “going to die anyway.”

Those abortion workers interviewed assure the woman that 911 will not be called if the baby is born alive, and that it assuredly will not be taken to the hospital. Why? Because, as they revealingly say, the hospital is required to try and save the child’s life. The implication is that “We here at the abortion clinic will make sure the child dies.” The legalization of abortion in America has thus, in some situations, become the legalization of infanticide although the Federal ‘Born Alive Act’ is supposed to protect any baby who comes through an abortion alive.

In 2012, the last year for which statistics are available, Planned Parenthood performed 327,166 surgical abortions at their facilities in the USA. This is by far the most lucrative procedure done at their facilities. Very few of these facilities are actually licensed as clinics and therefore are not subject to the health laws of a state or municipality. Planned Parenthood saw over 2 million women for ‘Reversible Contraception’ as it is listed in their annual report. Isn’t that a pleasant term for murdering a baby in the womb? Reversible Contraception. This would involve oral medicines that cause the death of the baby in the womb, surgical abortions and chemical abortions.

You may not be aware that 100s of millions of your Tax Dollars are funneled to Planned Parenthood every year by federal grants. Their profit margin, as stated in their annual report for 2013, was 58%. Rather a large ‘profit margin’ for an entity classed as a non-profit by the US Government. A lot of corporations could only wish for anything near that amount.

Some good news:   Since 2008, the rate of abortions in our country has dropped 13%. In Indiana, abortions have dropped by 50% since 1980. This is directly attributed to the efforts of Pro-Life organizations and the appearance of more and more pregnancy centers in our country. As of today, the number of non-profit Pregnancy Centers, who provide care at no cost to the woman, is now greater than the number of abortion clinics in this country. Over 30 abortion facilities closed down in the last year, most because of laws passed by state legislatures that would make them regulated by the health department.

   In Jeremiah 19:5, God said: They have built the high places of Baal to burn their children in the fire as offerings to Baal—something I did not command or mention, nor did it enter my mind.

   What must God think concerning the 55 million unborn in our country that were sacrificed to the god of Choice?  

   Euthanasia is becoming a life ending choice in many parts of the world, including some states here in our country. If at the end of his life someone is suffering, does man have the right to take that life or to assist the individual in taking his own life? Only God is to be the giver of life and the taker of life.

     If we do not value life from conception to natural death, this has in the past, and will in the future, lead to other morally corrupt activities in our culture.

The Declaration of Independence says, “We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. If there is no life, there can be no liberty and no pursuit of happiness.

   I Thess. 4: 3 – 8 God's will is for you to be holy, so stay away from all sexual sin. 4Then each of you will control his own body and live in holiness and honor— 5not in lustful passion like the pagans who do not know God and his ways. 6Never harm or cheat a Christian brother in this matter by violating his wife, for the Lord avenges all such sins, as we have solemnly warned you before. 7God has called us to live holy lives, not impure lives. 8Therefore, anyone who refuses to live by these rules is not disobeying human teaching but is rejecting God, who gives his Holy Spirit to you.

     Sexual immorality involves many aspects of our culture. Homosexuality, which is an abomination in God’s sight, is being advocated by many. Vice President Joe Biden declared recently that protecting gay rights is a defining mark of a civilized nation and must trump national cultures and social traditions. Biden told a gathering of U.S. and international gay rights advocates that President Barack Obama has directed that U.S. diplomacy and foreign assistance promote the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender men and women around the world. “I don't care what your culture is," Biden told about 100 guests at the Naval Observatory's vice presidential mansion. "Inhumanity is inhumanity is inhumanity. Prejudice is prejudice is prejudice." With anti-gay laws taking root in nearly 80 countries, Biden and other top White House officials met with religious, human rights and HIV health care advocates in a forum dedicated to promoting gay rights internationally.

Romans 1: 22-28 Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools. And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people and birds and animals and reptiles. So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other's bodies. They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen. That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved. Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done.                          

The sanctity of marriage between a man and a woman has been defiled in many states with the legalization of marriage between two men or two women. God is not pleased.

Pornography, Prostitution, Child Molestation, Teen Sex. All of these are being promoted in our culture in various ways. How many billboards or TV ads show nearly naked young women, even though it has nothing to do with the actual product being promoted? How many TV shows have the convoluted lives of married people sleeping around, having sex with other married people? Co-habiting without marriage is widely accepted in our culture.

Teens are pressured by their peers to participate in unhealthy sexual activity. The internet is full of enticements.   They are being lured into becoming sexually active at younger and younger ages. If we don’t turn the hearts of this nation back toward God, we will reap more and more of what is being sown in this country to draw it away from God’s laws.

I Corinthians 6: 18 – 20 Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body. Don't you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body.

Solomon warns us in Ecclesiastes 1: 9 - 11 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? It hath been already of old time, which was before us. There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.

This country is in jeopardy. We have forsaken the ideas and the ideals of our founding fathers. They came to this country to escape persecution and gain the right to worship God according to the teaching of the Bible. They believed in the principles set forth in God’s word for a stable society. The last sentence of the Declaration of Independence states this: And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm Reliance on the Protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor. Many of the signers lost their properties, their families, and even their lives because of their intent to be able to exercise their right to free speech and freedom OF religion. Not freedom FROM religion, but freedom OF religion. Many since then have lost their lives in defense of these freedoms.

Many in our country have turned their backs on God and they oppose any form, or even the mention, of God in the public forum. Unfortunately many who sit on the bench in the courtrooms have sided with this small minority in our country who would take God out of the picture. Christians need to be standing up for God and letting our voices be heard.

Are we using the pulpits of our churches and the Christian family unit to stand for what is right and for Godly principles and instruction for our children? If they do not know the ways of God, they will fall into the ways of the secular culture. If they do not have a Godly plan for their future, they will be given a future by the ungodly of this country.

II Corinthians 6:17 says, Therefore, come you out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.

Do we pray earnestly for our country and for the leaders of this country to turn to God and bring us back to a nation of Godly morality?

I Timothy 2 verses 1-4: First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, requests, and thanksgivings be offered to God for all people, for kings and all others who are in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.

   You can’t turn on the news or pick up a newspaper without seeing a story of someone being murdered or raped or beaten. What a terrible indictment of our culture. Life is no longer respected. Losing a member of their family or the community to murder is a way of life for many in this country. We took prayer out of the schools. We took the Bible out of the hands and hearts of the young people in our schools. In one school, when they removed the 10 commandments from their classrooms, someone was heard to say: “Why, if we leave them there for the children to read, they might be led to actually obey them.” And this would be a bad thing??

Psalm 119: 9 – 12 How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your word. I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. Praise be to you, Lord; teach me your decrees.

In many parts of the world, Christians are being persecuted and even put to death. Are we taking note of those who have promised their intention to wipe Israel and God’s anointed people, the Jews, off the face of the map? This is also their intention for America. They have told us we will convert to their false religion or we will die. America is the Great Satan to those who preach a religion of violence and death. 13 years ago we were starkly reminded that there are those who wish to kill us. Persecution of Christians in our own country is on the rise and in many areas, those who serve Satan are attempting to eliminate any reference to Christianity in this country.

Are our churches reaching out to the lost, to those who worship a false god and commit their lives to a false religion? What about those who have no thought of any god, who live their lives in total obscurity of any teaching from the one true God? What about our young people, who are exposed to so many evils in our culture. Are we teaching and training them in the ways of God? Are they able to reach out to other youth with the truths of the Bible and by being an example?

Are you regularly into God’s Word? In prayer? Are you looking up and expecting the calling out of the church from this sinful world? Are you listening for the trumpet call and the shout from above?

I Thessalonians 5: 16 – 24 tells us who is in charge.

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not put out the Spirit’s fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil. May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul, and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it.        


       Sandra Naugle lives in Sellersburg, IN and attends Henryville Church of Christ in Henryville, IN, and

                                       Ralph Avenue Church of Christ in Louisville, KY, where her husband preaches part time.

                                             She and her husband, Ray, are on the board of Right to Life of Southern, Indiana, Inc.

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If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

Romans 14:8