As you know, A.D. is an abbreviation used with a date, in common Julian or Gregorian calendars, indicating how many years have passed since the birth of Jesus. The abbreviation stands for anno Domini, a Latin phrase meaning “in the year of our Lord.” It reminds us that the birth of Jesus of Nazareth was the turning point in human history and has brought “good news” of joy and peace to all mankind.
Accordingly, I would like to wish you a Happy A.D. 2016!
As we begin this New Year, the world’s news is filled with alarming reports of murderous mayhem, climatic chaos, and moral mutations.
While we may be quick to ask for God’s favor and covering for our personal lives and our family’s well-being for this New Year, someone has suggested it seems a little presumptuous to ask God’s blessing on our nation, considering:
The killing of more than a million babies a year continues in our country—with limited abatement. The effects of same-sex marriage, forced upon us by an aggressive Supreme Court, (and according to Chief Justice Roberts) without any actual application of our Constitution, is yet to be realized. And, our nation’s president and his administration continue to “fundamentally transform America” by forcing acceptance (and even affirmation) of homosexual and transgender sin, while attacking public expressions of religious freedoms, in general.
In 2016, we will elect a new president. Committed disciples need to pray diligently for God’s will to be done, while seeking to be involved, hoping to influence the outcome for good and for God.
Jesus warned His disciples, in Matthew 24, of the terrible events our world would experience in the “end times,” during which His disciples should watch and wait and work. Likewise, in the terrible times of our “last days,” we must desire to be good stewards of the opportunities for influencing justice, righteousness and morality, for which our political system provides.
I am currently impressed with the focused efforts of two of Evangelist Billy Graham’s children, Franklin Graham and Anne Graham Lotz. They both feel that “America’s walls of biblical morality are crumbling” and that “the only hope for this country is Almighty God and His Son Jesus Christ.”
Franklin is leading the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association in a unique “Decision America Tour”—visiting all 50 states to hold prayer rallies in the state capitals. He says:
“I want to challenge Christians to boldly live out their faith and to pray for our nation and its leaders. I want to encourage Christians to get out and vote, and to cast their ballots for candidates who uphold biblical principles.
I want to strongly urge Christians to run for public office at every level—local, state, and federal. We will not be endorsing any political candidates, but I will be proclaiming the truth of God’s Gospel in every state. I hope you will start praying with us now.”
For her part, Anne Graham Lotz has launched a prayer initiative for 2016 via her AnGeL Ministries. She has been prompted by this prophetic promise:
Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you. Isaiah 60:1-2
May the Giver of every good and perfect gift continue to shed His grace on us and on our nation, in A.D. 2016!