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Policing in "Babylon" Print E-mail
Written by Ray Fairman   
My wife and I were talking the other night about her study of the Old Testament "Book of Revelation". I know you probably thought that Revelation was always the last Canonized Book of the Bible and found at the end of the New Testament. Well if you did then you were partly right, but I'll bet that you never really looked at the Old Testament Book of Daniel very closely. This book really chronicles two themes. The first is God's sovereign control over the rulers, governments, nations and things of this world, while the second shows this sovereignty via miracles. Through the journaling of this second theme of the book, God through Daniel, as He did through John in the New Testament Book of Revelation, revealed things then still to come leading some scholars to occasionally refer to this book off-handedly as the Old Testament Book of Revelation.

I found some very pertinent messages to modern day Christians and especially to us modern day "Centurions", jumping out at me as we spoke and I began prolonging this dialogue with my wife about her study. I thought some of these truths might well make a few of us take some time to contemplate our own Christian role modeling in the light of Daniel's.

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Revelations of the Old Testament

This book begins with Daniel being captured and taken to Babylon which espoused a culture not unlike our modern day culture, the one in which we live and work. A culture that places high emphasis on education, the finest epicurean delights, our limited time, youth, beauty, pleasure, prominence, wealth, social status and power. All these are things of this world and not of the next. Although God allowed the Israelites to be taken captive, He did not cause this consequence,but choreographed its performance. You see, Our God is a God of justice and mercy and as such He will apply both attributes to all of our actions and omissions.

The use of the ungodly to accomplish God's purpose is not a new theological paradigm. Look at His use of Pharaoh and Herod and Judas as well as Nebuchadnezzar. Sometimes, as in the case of Saul of Tarsus (Paul), great things can happen even to the vessel itself.

In this case God uses the capture of Daniel and three of his friends to accomplish great things in Babylon and as He begins to prepare the way for the eventual release of His chosen people to return to their own land.

Have you ever wondered just how God expects us to avoid the types of ungodly people described in II Timothy 3:1-9 while doing our jobs as LEO's? If you look at that scripture it seems to describe most of the folks that we come in contact with, especially on the "Midwatch". Do you see any similarity in our "Babylonian customers" and II Timothy 3:1-9?

"But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, disapproved concerning the faith; but they will progress no further, for their folly will be manifest to all, as theirs also was. (II Timothy 3:1-9 NKJV)

Well I have some news for you; He doesn't expect us to avoid them. He told us to remain a light to the world and that can only be accomplished from a place in the world. You have been given the key to heaven, now what are you doing with it? Are you guarding it with your life and keeping it secure so no one can steal it? What earthly good will that do? You don't need it anymore; Christ opened heaven for you on Calvary. He passed the key to you so you could give it to others, so unless you are sharing it you aren't contributing to the population explosion in heaven are you?

God gave us some guidelines for working in our own present day "Babylon". He also made it clear that the light the world sees is not our own, but the light of Christ reflected in the way we live. When He said that His kingdom was not of this world, He meant a couple of things. First, I believe He meant that He did not come to set up a Government on "terra firma". The New Heaven and New Earth will take care of that after the "Second Coming". Second, I believe He meant that right now the Kingdom of God is more accurately described as "the way we internalize and live the teachings of Christ". Are the things that you have been taught by and about Jesus really being used by you to live your life or do you prefer not to "rock the boat" and allow the society of our modern day Babylon to dictate your actions by assigning you your personal performance standards, guidelines and goals?

Try contemplating the following scripture:

"For our boasting is this: the testimony of our conscience that we conducted ourselves in the world in simplicity and godly sincerity, not with fleshly wisdom but by the grace of God, and more abundantly toward you." (2Co 1:12 NKJV)

"And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God." (Ro 12:2 NKJV)

The real question is, "Is this a realistic expectation?" Well if you spend any time in Daniel I think you will begin to see that the answer is yes.

Daniel was taken captive and placed in an environment in Babylon that seems to mirror our own culture. He was selected for the best possible treatment as a servant in the Kings Palace. He would be educated, well provided for and treated to the best of everything and all he had to do was conform to the expectations of his superiors and the prevailing culture and forget or ignore the training he had received about God Almighty. As it is chronicled in Chapter One, this was apparently easy for many captured Israelites to do, but not for Daniel and several of his closest friends who stood fast in their spiritual faith time after time and let that faith be displayed through their actions. Daniel refused to deny or ignore his God which would have doomed his eternal soul. He chose to hang on in the face of a lot more severe punishment and ridicule than we face today. I meet Christian law enforcement officers often who are happy to relate to me that they are strong Christians but that their department or community wants then to keep their Christianity a secret and they feel that taking a strong Christian stand would not be in their best interest at this time. They are prepared to gamble with their souls. I wish I could say that in my 33 years of military service in the U. S. Marine Corps and U. S. Army Reserves were different, but they were not. I did not routinely find God being touted in either my law enforcement or military careers and it took me a long time to realize that this was because I was looking for God there instead of taking Him there. You see I have finally learned that God is not lost, so He is not where you find Him, but where you take Him. Are you proud enough of Your Father to take Him to work with you and acknowledge His presence?

My friend I ask you, who knows just how much time is left? The God I know does not wear a Rolex. There will be many folks who, when the alarm sounds, will get in line only to be told by the Lord, I never knew you. Check it out; I didn't say it Christ did.

"And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!" (Mt 7:23 NKJV)

I'm sorry brothers and sisters of the badge (and you cultural Christian brothers and sisters too) you don't make it to salvation on your ancestry or somebody else's credentials. While you can't earn salvation and a ticket to heaven on that "Mountain Railroad" gospel singers tell us about by doing good works, having a faith so weak that it can be manipulated, conformed and molded by the standards of our "Babylonian" culture is more dangerous than having no faith at all. You see, those without faith in God have decided where they are willing to spend their eternal lives, but those who are satisfied having their "ears tickled" and think that just being a part of the new emerging liberal,something for everyone church culture will provide them all the fire insurance they need, are thinking about their arrival in heaven while driving "hell bent for leather" down the "highway to hell".

"For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. (2Ti 4:3-4 NKJV)

Someday you will be forced to ask the question of yourself, Am I a Christian Cop or a Convenience Christian Cop? When do I act like I have been ordained by God to serve as a Law Enforcement Officer (LEO)? Always or only when I am in a non-threatening environment and find it to be convenient. When the time arrives to give an answer, then Grab your Bible and read Daniel first. It might help you become a"Rose Among The Thorns".

It can be painful to live the Christian life all the time, just ask me. I have said that I never felt guilty about anything I did until I became a Christian. Kind of like subscribing to that old John Wayne axiom: "Never say you're sorry, sign of weakness." Well, while I like the characters Wayne portrayed, I don't always agree with "The Duke". You see, until I felt guilty and had to say I'm sorry to God, I never knew what it was like to feel good. Now, I seem to always be saying, I'm Sorry to Him. So while I often agree with John Wayne's philosophies, I always agree with God's (though sometimes I'll admit a bit reluctantly) and I believe that if there was any way to come to salvation except by the "Sangre de Christo" (Blood of Christ) then God would never have sent Jesus, His only Son, to the Cross of Calvary.

Never forget that God is always with you and will never forsake you no matter who else does. He was with Daniel in the palace, in the dungeon, in the lion's den and his friends in the fiery ovens. He is with you on patrol, in the locker room, in the classroom, at the range, at home and even when you think you are all alone. If you can realize this one simple fact, that God is ALWAYS with you, and act accordingly then you might see a revitalization (Don't some of you folks refer to that as a revival) in your Christian walk.

Remember He hears, sees & knows everything we do. How does that make you feel?

Now, I don't mean to imply that when you make a commitment to live for God that it will become a "cake walk". In truth I can guarantee you it won't! You need to prepare for your life to become a battleground. Satan will take an immediate interest in your every effort to live as a Christian, no matter how feeble these efforts may seem to you. Satan is so busy, because he is not God, and he can't be everywhere at the same time. So he is going to focus on priority targets. Those targets include New Christians, Recommitted Christians, Especially Effective Christians and Christian Leaders. He will not try to always get these targets to deny God, but will often just try to get them to forget God for a while. If he can get you to lose your primary focus then putting God out of your mind habitually will become routine and even without a focus on Satan, your lack of focus on God, while working the "Mean Streets of Babylon", will open you up to the influences of that culture merely because serving God takes a backseat to the "Serve Us" mentality of our society.

If you want to survive in this type of hostile environment then you need to acknowledge some basic truths.

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