This brave new world of hostility is familiar for our brothers and sisters elsewhere, in places like Nigeria, India, and China. Ours are more experiences of a series of horrible moments, such as earlier this year in Nashville. Christians in the West do not fear for their lives. Even so, something has clearly shifted. Calls to tolerate the views of others are about as 1990s these days as talking about abortion being “safe, legal, and rare.” As we’ve seen in Nashville, it’s a perilously small step from the rhetorical games of wanting to punch “literal Nazis” to literally punching those who dare stray from the cultural narrative.
The only way forward for the Christ follower is to commit again to knowing what is true, to commit again to saying and living what is true even if there is a cost, and to say and live what is true in a way that is pleasing to Christ. In other words, faithfulness will involve both the what we believe and the how we’ll live it out.