AMERICA'S FOURTH AND TEN
by CHARLES ROBEY
(MOODY AL USA)
In the game of football, if your favorite team happens to be confronted with a fourth and ten, fourth down and ten yards to go, a quick decision must be made. If you are on your side of the field, and close to the goal line, your team might consider going for it. But if you are on your opponent’s side of the field, you’ve better not attempt it. This decision is usually made by the coach on the sideline, but sometimes may be made in the on-field huddle.
Another analogy of this scenario, especially if your team is losing and time is about to expire, your team may be up against the proverbial wall and have to go for it.
There is a parallel to this football situation in today’s America. Is our great Republic now facing a proverbial fourth and ten? Is this nation of ours now up against a competitor's wall?
Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, you are probably well aware that the integrity and honesty of America's national culture has taken a financial slide downward in the form of inflation.
In today’s liberal reporting style is the so-called 'new normal' method of getting out the news of the day. Looking back, I can remember when news reporting was so simple. The evening news had only one broadcaster. Now we have at least two main broadcasters, sitting alongside each other delivering the news. One barely gets half a sentence out, when the other partner finishes the sentence.
And what about the synchronized broadcast talking points? Each time these identical statements are repeated, I can’t help but give out a silent snicker. Well, these drive-by news media outlets must have attended another governmental briefing session, I comment privately to myself.
These talking point expressions seem to always center in on a particular issue in hopes of changing culture’s opinion on a certain subject. If it didn’t always seem to border on a socialistic mindset, this type of juvenile speech would be absolutely pathetic.
One of America’s latest talking points of the day concerns the subject of ‘We the people.' America’s recent record-breaking inflation is given as being transitory. In other words, inflation is only a fleeting, passing or brief concern. Will this new explanation hold water? Only time will tell, I suppose.
Of course, tomorrow will probably bring on another leftist buzz, depending on the issues at hand. You know, it's kind of hard for these dual news broadcasters to divide up a one symbol word. Now for the central issue of the day, here is another eventful fiction story entitled “America’s Fourth and Ten.”
"There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community." (Proverbs 6:16-19)
The traffic was tremendously heavy, but not really unusual for a Friday afternoon. If only I had left work a little earlier. However, I’ve finally made it home. What a grueling week it was! Why does it seem as if teaching at the Bible Seminary is getting so taxing for this senior professor? Maybe I should take my wife’s advice and pull the pin.
Oh well, just to relax. As I was about to open the front door for the paper, it all happened. Someone beat me to it; the doorbell rang. If I had not opened the door, this unusual dream probably would not have happened. I guess providential intervention took charge in this case.
But no one was there. It must have been the wind. Before I realized it, a big burst suddenly picked me up and away I went, up, up and away, into the wild, blue yonder. I passed through the clouds, as I moved upward into the great unknown.
In a blink of an eye, I was flying over a bustling metropolitan capitol. It was just as my history textbook had pictured it. There were all the expected tourist attractions; the domed capitol, the large statue in front of the court building, the stately monument reaching upwards, the mall surrounding its reflecting pool. And oh yes, there was a large, pillared mansion in the background.
'Wait just a minute, why are all these great historic treasures behind barricades and well-guarded fences?' I wondered. I just didn’t understand it at all.
Suddenly as if by divine direction, I came to rest outside a little, historic, neatly kept, white-painted church. The windows were open allowing me to get an idea of what was happening. Wow, did I get an ear full!
“What’s going on here?” I silently pondered in my heart. From all indications, this well-known tourist attraction should be alive with an avalanche of tourists. So, why is all this shouting, singing and fevered Old Time Religion preaching going on, here of all places? Where are all the tourists?
I was pulled into the church and took a seat in the very back. I was just in time for the preaching to begin. And begin it did. What a fiery little old preacher man he was! He was even dressed the part to match this historic church decor.
Slamming a large, black Bible on the pulpit he began. And like a photographic mind, with the help of my trusted iPad, which I had in my shoulder bag, I was able to capture his message. So, here goes.
"Ladies and Gentlemen, please lend an ear. Our great country of America, the land of the free, the home of the brave, has come under attack. Not with bullets nor armor, but with words of untruth. Can I hear an Amen?
“Since the invention of the Internet, it seems that America’s written or spoken truth has taken a downhill slide. The Bible is quick to warn us not to believe everything we see or hear, especially from today’s liberal news media."
Opening his big, black Bible, he began to read.
“The naïve person believes every word, but the shrewd one ponders each step.” (Proverbs 14:15)
He then continued reading select passages from his Bible, thumping as if to gain attention, as he spoke.
“Misinformation is not new. However, the Scripture foretold that in our day, that of the end time or last days, our culture would go from bad to worse. Yes, we now find ourselves in a time of government evil (Proverbs 2:8), of false teachers inspired by demons, and an explosion of hypocrisy and lies. (I Timothy 4:1-2) It's a time of apostasy, mass corruption, and the breakdown of law and order. (II Timothy 3:1-9, 13) People are no longer content to hear sound teaching and turn to many different teachers of evil and untruths. (II Timothy 4:3-4) ) It's a time when people mock the end time prophecy. (II Peter 2:3-4) Can I hear a witness?" which prompted a flurry of shouted agreements.
"Give a listen," he continued. “If these Scripture passages are true and correct, and I surely believe with all my heart that they are, then the only source of our reliance is the Bible and prayer." Again, this prompted a loud response of agreement.
Occasionally thumping the Bible, he continued reading.(II Timothy 3:16-17)
Respecting prayer, he then read, prompting more of the same reaction. (Philippians 4:6-7)
He continued on, "So, for now, we need to stop and smell the roses, so to speak. Make sure of the source and evaluate the reliability of the issue. (I Thessalonians 5:21) Nonetheless, as with inflation, the conclusion is obvious. Just check your wallet!”
This time prompted an overwhelming standing ovation with shouts of joy.
“However, as human nature goes," he went on, "we oftentimes tend to believe only what we want to hear. By the same token, the social aspect of the drive-by news outlets often customizes the news feeds based on their private interests.” (Proverbs 28:26)
“So, what is America’s future? Are we actually now moving towards the last days of civilization? And, why is the government leadership now rewarding the evil and punishing the good?“
Thumping his big Bible, he apparently concluded his remarks by reading a closing passage. "Always remember this reading," he concluded. (Isaiah 5:20)
What a closing it was! Those seated all over the church sanctuary had dropped to their knees, hands raised in quiet, solemn prayer.
Again, as my dreams of late seem to prematurely end, by divine direction, this one was quickly over as well. I was back home and closing the door behind me.
"Dear, Dear, is that you?" my wife called. "Be sure and close the door, it’s a bit windy out today. And why the tears, if I may ask?"
"Yes, Love," I replied, "It surely is a bit windy today in the heavens. Kind of got in my eyes. I must needs get busy and finish my Prophecy Themes dissertation. Can we just sit a spell? I have some exciting news to tell. End of story, beginning of service. Amen!
A few years ago, I happened to run into my favorite local television news anchor, while sitting on a bench in the shopping mall. I hesitated to disturb him, as he appeared deep in thought with his reading. When he looked up, we started a polite conversation.
One question I was able to ask was what had happened to the single television news anchors. He was very polite in answering. It was just as I had thought. Politics, gender recognition, appeal and commercialism had taken over the air waves.
So, bye for now. See you in my dreams! (Psalm 33:12)