Lifelines 3/18/2018

These are remarkable times in which the unthinkable of a decade ago has become common.  It has existed all along but remained hidden under a cloak of secrecy.  The recent revelations that emerged out of Hollywood provide daily headlines of the smut that found a home in the entertainment industry.  The clues were there but ignored.  Young gymnasts, children really, suffered under the “care” of a doctor.  Little boys were “coached” in football by a man of perversion.  Authorities looked the other way while tiny lives were ruined before they started.  Strange times, indeed.

How did we ever reach such a state?  A student of cultural change observed that we once loved people and used things, but now we love things and use people.  That is certainly true in some of the cases that have recently drawn the spotlight.  Values have been turned upside down, but that is nothing new.  Human judgment has been out of balance ever since the first bite of the forbidden fruit.

There has been an ebb and flow to Satan’s attacks throughout history.  Truly, there is nothing new under the sun.  It picks up intensity from time-to-time, but whenever we think it’s the worst that it’s ever been we should remember the wickedness that consumed humanity in the days of Noah.  Yes, evil is on the prowl now, but it always has been.  Whenever it gets a stranglehold on culture as a whole, the consequences are grave.  God takes a hands-off approach.  When people insist that they want to go their own way the Lord will let them (Romans 1:18-32).  The outcome is always ugly.

The symptoms are shocking, and society is totally confused.  Anatomical males insist that they are women trapped in the wrong body.  Up is said to be down and wrong is hailed as right.  Sin is celebrated.  Same sex marriage is debated and legalized in many states.  All of those are just clues of a much deeper problem.  It is a God problem.  He has been rejected, and our nation is reflecting the outcome of such a decision.  He has let us go our own way, and the results are inevitably a mess.

The prodigal son could vouch for that.  He decided that he didn’t want to be bothered with his father (Luke 15:11-32).  He got exactly what he wanted.  In fact, his father helped him do precisely what he wanted to do.  There is no indication that his father begged him in any way not to leave.  Life in the far country was far less than he thought it would be.  Leaving our Father behind will always lead to a pigpen.  Thankfully, the same road that took us away will also take us home.  He is forgiving when we finally come to our senses.  He is always waiting with a celebratory banquet when we come home.