Our news has been inundated with vacillating moral legislation, uncertain negotiations, insecure security and unsettled workplace rights. The late theologian and philosopher Francis Schaeffer once said, “Modern man has both feet firmly planted in midair.”
George Gallup, America’s pollster, reported that 67 percent (and rising) of Americans believe that there is no such thing as absolute truth. In other words, there is no firm footing to be found. The only absolute is that there are no absolutes and thus tolerance becomes king, even if it can’t serve its subjects well.
Webster defined tolerance as “the allowable deviation from a standard.” That, in a nutshell, is our broad-minded world that embraces almost anything morally, politically or educationally. The sins that used to slink down the back alley now strut down Main Street.
Even tradition-based religious institutions have been duped into believing that they can live like the world and still be the church. Prison Fellowship founder Charles Colson once bemoaned, “Our moral senses have been permanently neutered. We have undergone a moral lobotomy.”
Fortunately, Webster’s definition of tolerance has left us with the answer to our dilemma: We have deviated from “a standard.” As a culture, we are like a kite that has been cut free from the string, or standard, only to spiral out of control. The farther the kite spins away from its tether, the more severe and violent the spiraling down becomes toward its demise.
Is there any hope of reversing the fall?
It has been said that eggs are eggs, but some are rotten. Hopes are hopes, but many of them are delusions.
Thankfully, there is a sure hope available. It is the historically tested and proven standard from which we have deviated. It is the stabilizing kite string, so to speak, that we hold in our hand: the Bible, God’s spoken and inerrant word to all of mankind for all ages.
Colson warned about “the Bible, the sharp, two-edged sword, being replaced with the devil’s pitchfork.” Morality is now defined as, “Have it your own way.” An absolute standard of right and wrong, to many, is fast becoming a dusty page of ancient history. Our only true hope is to have the kite string reattached in order to stabilize the spiraling kite.
But there is a problem. With the singing of Christmas carols and Easter cantatas, it’s not that society doesn’t believe the Bible. It’s that society doesn’t want to. Therein lies the difference between personal and societal deliverance versus doom.
God says in Proverbs 23:23, “Buy the truth, and sell it not.” There’s a price to pay to obey and reattach the stabilizing kite string of God’s truth, for the Bible doesn’t
cater to human emotions and desires. But, it’s the only truth that can “make you free” (John 8:32) to survive and thrive under God’s blessing, declared the God-man, Jesus Christ.
When we invite God Almighty, who dictates weather systems, to come to our aid on his terms of give up your sins and gain him, “He is able to deliver thee,” in the words of William Ogden’s hymn. Factually, God’s ability and power to deliver is seen all about us in creation. The 19th century preacher Charles Haddon Spurgeon wrote, “He who looks at the sunrise and the sunset, and does not see the footprints of God, must be inwardly blinder than a mole, and only fit to live underground.”
Keep in mind that the “signs of the times” (Matthew 16:3) warn of the hourglass running out for the spiraling kite. As for those who scoff, saying there are no “signs” of the winding down end times, that person is a sign:
“In the last days mockers will come ... following after their own lusts” (II Peter 3:3, KJV).
So, “You do well to pay attention (to the Bible alone) as to a lamp shining in a dark place” (II Peter 1:19, NASB).
John Jay, the first chief justice of the Supreme Court, wrote, “The Bible is the best of all books, for it is the Word of God and teaches us the way to be happy in this world and the next. Continue therefore to read it and to regulate your life by its precepts.”
Dear one, begin by reading the Gospel according to John or the book of Romans in the New Testament, and choose to “make level paths for your feet, and take only ways that are firm” (Proverbs 4:26, NIV).