Fri. May 7th, 2021

Passive, Affirmative, Non-Challenging

Volume 24 Issue 5


It was a casual game of chess. My opponent was my granddaughter, Micki Rodenbush, age 10. She was intense. She intended to win, but she was a mere novice against a former chess instructor for the Indianapolis Parks and Recreation Department: not a very good one, actually, but nevertheless this should have been no contest.


About twenty minutes into the game I noticed that Micki had positioned herself to do serious damage. In fact, if she had understood her position, she could have likely ended the game with a swift victory. But thankfully an unexpected interruption saved my reputation. I do here confess my relief. It is my hope that she did not actually outmaneuver me. Oh, my. Regardless, we planned to play another day. Whew!


In the game of chess there is no such thing as a neutral, insignificant move. Every move, even if the player is unaware, plays a role. It may lead, block, deceive, distract, tempt, position, and so forth. The chess piece’s role in most cases is part of a scheme aimed at the defeat of one’s opponent. A chess move’s assignment is generally not obvious during its initial positioning. However, even if it seems obvious or is judged a mistake, it may only appear such in either case so as to deceive. The genius of a player is in his ability to set up a trap or a defense in advance of its actual execution. Therefore nothing should be considered neutral. Such is this world. Nothing about it is meaningless.


Micki had come to play for real. To win. To defeat. Trust me on this: she had no other intention. The enemies of righteousness and truth today never make neutral moves. The thief comes to steal and to kill (John 10:10). I fear that we are taking our enemies too lightly. False teaching has consequences. Worldliness has consequences. Every move we make has consequences – every service, sermon, song, and every decision. Nothing is neutral.


The May 2012 issue of the Whistleblower, a publication of, invites us to explore how America has become “confused, intimidated, and dominated by the left’s secret language.” It deals with the famous book by Saul Alinsky entitled Rules for Radicals, an instruction book about advancing revolution. Obviously, space does not allow comment on each of the articles in the magazine, but the piece by David Kupelian, author of The Marketing of Evil and How Evil Works, includes this warning:


“The single most important operating principle behind Alinsky’s methods, the one that makes the rest of them work – namely, intimidation – is increasingly the modus operandi of today’s government.    To put it bluntly, for Alinsky’s ‘community organizing’ rules – which Obama says ‘were seared into my brain’ – to really work, the general public must be made to feel intimidated, upset, frustrated, and hopeless. Alinsky explained why:    ‘Any revolutionary change must be preceded by a passive, affirmative, non-challenging attitude toward change among the mass of our people. They must feel so frustrated, so defeated, so lost, so futureless in the prevailing system that they are willing to let go of the past and change the future. This acceptance is the reformation essential to any revolution.’

That’s you: you are supposed to feel ‘defeated’ and ‘lost’ and the radicals’ efforts are directed at making you feel that way. But what if you’re a fighter and stand up to the would-be revolutionaries’ abuses and usurpations of power? Then you are to be attacked – here’s Alinsky’s rule No. 5:

‘Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon. It is almost impossible to counterattack ridicule. Also it infuriates the opposition, who then react to your advantage…The enemy properly goaded and guided in his reaction will be your major strength.’”


These weapons are being used against the church as well. The enemy is real and determined to defeat Truth. Here is the Apostle Peter’s admonition: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8).


This spirit of the age intimidates and insults those who will not compromise their biblical values or who do not agree with certain politically correct agendas. (Please read Ezekiel 22:23-29.) They don’t necessarily have any illusions about swinging everybody over to their beliefs, but remember: what they seek “is a passive, affirmative, non-challenging attitude toward change.” In other words, one may know that “untempered mortar” is being used (Ezekiel 22:28). But if one’s response is silence, then the silence becomes consent.


Apostolic preachers must not be intimated. They must never be silenced by ridicule. I see intimidation at play all the time, and so do you. Good men and women are often made to feel inadequate, old-school, under-educated, un-cool (as some would say) and, thereby, they become fearful and unwilling to speak. Often their sacrifices, giving, successful enterprises, and exampled lives are ignored and unacknowledged because they are perceived to be a bit too conservative. Over time the enemy wins by our “passive, affirmative, non-challenging attitude,” and then the sad admonition of Ezekiel 22:30 is fully understood: “And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.”


My granddaughter, Micki, calculating and determined, caught me casual and aloof, and the game was being executed fast. I was losing. So it was and so shall it be without a serious awakening among us all.



Leave a Reply