The city of Chicago is one of the most violent places on earth. According to the U.S. Department of Defense and the Chicago Police Department, over 7,000 Americans died in Afghanistan and Iraq from 2001 to 2020, while 10,000 were killed in Chicago. Nearly 4,000 people were shot in Chicago in 2020 alone, and more than 750 were killed. What has happened to this city? Following are five of the fundamental problems:
First, there is the terrible corruption of the public school system which is a vast, godless propaganda machine, brainwashing generation after generation of America’s children in myths and lies, such as evolution, moral relativism, agnosticism, racism, neo-Marxism, while keeping them uneducated in things that matter.
Second, there is the welfare state. It has played a large role in the destruction of black families in particular. Attorney Larry Elder comments, “In 1900, you look at census reports and a black kid, believe it or not, was slightly more likely to be born into a nuclear intact family than a white. What’s happened is we have launched this so-called war on poverty in the 60s, when literally Lyndon Johnson sent people knocking on doors apprising women of the availability of welfare, providing there was no man in the house. And we went from 25% of blacks being born out of wedlock in 1965 to 75% right now. And if we look at how much we have spent on welfare, the lines are parallel. What we have done, in my opinion, is economically incentivized women to marry the government and we have allowed men to abandon their financial and moral responsibility, and now we have this” (Interview with Dave Rubin, 2015).
Third, there is a leftist city government that is gradually defunding the police and undermining law and order in a multitude of ways. (It is an elected government, so this is fundamentally a people problem, not a government problem.)
Fourth, there is the filthy entertainment industry. It has more influence on the average youth than any other one thing. Consider the hip hop culture. It is a direct affront to God and His holy laws. It destroys morality and stirs up rage. Empowered by technology, the hip hop culture captivates youth at an ever younger age. The smart phone delivers this culture into the very soul like a mainlined drug. This is a more fundamental problem than the welfare state. Most of the heroes in the fields of entertainment and sports represent the values of this culture. A few exceptions aside, the hip hop culture glorifies sex outside of marriage, the objectification of women, the sexualization of everything, including children, grossly immodest dressing, filthy dancing, shacking up, transsexualism, drinking, drugging, abortion on demand, rebellion against authority, gratuitous violence, etc. Because of the vast influence of the hip hop culture, these things, which were not generally acceptable in black communities 50 years ago, have become normalized even among professing Christians.
Finally we come to the greatest problem in the black community, and in every community, which is the lack of sound New Testament churches. America is still a land of churches. There are churches everywhere in Chicago, but the vast majority are powerless. The best are like Sardis which had a name that it lived but was dead. Few members are born again. Few even know the gospel. They are permeated with heresies. They stink to the high heavens with worldliness. And the root problem in the churches is unqualified pastors. Everything rises and falls on leadership. This is why there are two entire chapters of the Bible on God’s qualifications for pastors. Flying out of Chicago last week I had a long conversation with a black grandmother who was born in Florida in 1939. She said that when she was young the pastors were more sound and the church families more intact, but now the pastors are womanizers, covetous, flippant, shallow; they don’t teach the people God’s Word. She said she only knows of two pastors who don’t fit that bill. When she saw her own married pastor meeting a teenage girl on a dark road a few years ago she spoke out and caused a stir, but the pastor stayed on while the girl was sent away. The church alone is “the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Timothy 3:15). If churches are unregenerate, spiritually-powerless, worldly, unholy, lukewarm, led by biblically unqualified pastors, rife with hypocrisy and heresies, neglecting discipline, failing to build up the homes in godliness, then truth falls to the ground. In our estimation, then, the greatest need of Chicago, by far, is God-called preachers building doctrinally-sound, holy New Testament churches as the pillar and ground of the truth. This is also the greatest need in every community the world over.
(Friday Church News Notes, May 21, 2021, www.wayoflife.org, firstname.lastname@example.org, 866-295-4143)