Have you heard the news? God is now optional. You can choose for yourself whether or not you want to acknowledge Him.
Last week, the Air Force Academy announced a decision to make a phrase in the honor code “optional.” Now cadets can decide for themselves if they would like to commit to resolve to do their duty and live honorably with or without God’s help.
According to the Academy’s official statement by Lt. Gen. Michelle Johnson, this change helps “build a culture of dignity and respect” among the cadets by giving them “freedom” to choose their religious preference.
What the Lt. General does not realize is that her “freedom” to not acknowledge God is really great foolishness with eternal consequences.
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. Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness… Romans 1:28-29a
Maybe you heard the news story and shook your head or said “so sad.” Maybe you’re thinking it’s just a small thing. But God said this would happen. It’s another step along the “last days” path of destruction for our society. God warned us through Paul’s letter to Timothy:
You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. 2 For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. 3 They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. 4 They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. 5 They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!
2 Timothy 3:1-5, NLT
Does any of that sound familiar? Just look around. The Air Force Academy cadets can now choose to abstain from lying, stealing, and cheating under their own power or with God’s help.
“We will not lie, steal or cheat nor tolerate among us anyone who does. Furthermore, I resolve to do my duty and live honorably, so help me God.” Or so help myself.
Those who choose to leave out the phrase “so help me God” are “rejecting the power that could make them godly.”
In reality, every one of us makes that choice every day. Will we live under God’s authority and accept the help and power that can only come from Him? Or will we choose to reject Him and be our own god? One choice leads to life and one leads to eternal destruction.
The choice seems easy. So why do so many choose the way of destruction? The real truth of it is that when we choose to reject the one, true God we are worshipping ourselves. We have set ourselves up as “god.” Lord, have mercy on us!
We can’t choose for the cadet. Or for our spouse. Or for our neighbor. But each of us can choose to live our life dependent on God. What will you choose today?