Be on the Right Side of History, or Study History?

by Peter Scaer

"And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not” (Gal. 6:9).


When the odds are against us, how do we know when to quit, to throw in the towel? Well, the answer is that we will never quit. We will work while it is day before the night comes, and no man can work. No one can know the future. We are told that we need to get on the right side of history, but such talk is vanity. History will be what we make of it, and more pointedly, what God makes of it.

When people claim to be on the right side of history, what they really are saying is that they are going along with the flow, that they are following public opinion in order to remain with the "in crowd" defined by phony academia, the mainstream news, Hollywood, big tech, big sports, and all the rest. But it's not their approval that we seek.

The phrase "the right side of history" is all the more ironic, as it is spoken in an age in which most everything is being thrown down the memory hole. Rather than seeking to be on the right side of history, we would do well to study history, to read older books, with the idea that we are living in an age of vanity, having no idea what we don't know, unwilling to be taught by those who came before us.

Ah, to be on the right side of history is really no more than the vanity of being popular, the vanity of being well liked by the people who seem to matter, the so-called pillars. But we know where history is actually leading. There will come a day, sooner than ever, when our Lord will return in clouds, accompanied by his mighty angels. And then, it won't matter what the Washington Post says, won't matter the professors and celebrities tell us is true.

All that matters will be God's judgment, God's Word. And that word is available to us today. The truth of life in the womb, of real marriage, of male and female. It's all there, along with the Christ who came to save us. So, let's skip any talk about being on the right side of history, and spend our time, every day without growing weary, working and praying that we remain on the right side of eternity. And together we'll celebrate the harvest.

The Rev. Dr. Peter Scaer is chairman and professor of Exegetical Theology and director of the M.A. program at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind.

Be Informed

Pastor Paul Dare explains the dangers of cultural Marxism in a recent Issues, Etc., podcast.

Be Equipped

Dr. Ryan Anderson explains why Christians shouldn’t fear sharing their beliefs in the public square. Click here to read his most recent Wall Street Journal article.

Be Encouraged

“We’ve shown up to celebrate and safeguard each one from the unborn to the elderly and everywhere in between … We’re leaning in to bring joy to the desperate and hope to the endangered. We’re reaching out to take community and opportunity even amid adversity. We’re marching forth to give courage and compassion. We’ve united today not simply to leave a sordid past behind but to leap ahead into a splendid future.” –Rev. Michael Salemink

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