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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

An Upside Down World

Isaiah 5:20 (ESV)
20  Woe to those who call evil good
            and good evil,
     who put darkness for light
           and light for darkness,
     who put bitter for sweet
           and sweet for bitter! 


The word "spiritual" has become a mystery to me. People who do not know Christ or the Holy Spirit are claiming to be spiritual. I don't really think they are saying they are spiritual the way the demons are spiritual but what other spirits are there?

I sit with a man in a coffee shop as he tells me that his mother was a spiritual sort of person. I inquire what that means. He tells me that it is a special quality of understanding that there are spirits around us. He tells me that he knows things that he couldn't know without the "spirits" revealing them to him. He speaks of a warm glow when he is in his spiritual self. He says that his mother had that same quality.

The strange thing is that he is not strange. I have heard it before. I see it on tv as people speak of being spiritual. It makes itself known in movies. It is right and desired to be spiritual. No one seems to care who these spirits are. These spirits allow the person to adopt a new standard of right and wrong. Those who hold to the old standard are wrong. Those who go with the flow of these spirits are in the right.

Where do you think this will lead us?

The above scripture bothers me. We see it as a completed act. Those who ascribe to a biblical ethos of morality are called evil. The Bible itself is declared as having bad parts which do not need to be followed. One politician said that we "read" those bad parts out of the Bible. He placed the reader in control of what is right and wrong. He did not acknowledge that this simply isn't our call. The Holy Almighty God determines what is right and wrong. Even that statement would be considered evil by some.

God says that woe will fall on those who do this. It is the definition of being lost for we certainly don't know the way when we are going the wrong direction while claiming we are on the right path. You simply can't be more lost than to wholeheartedly believe you are right when you are wrong.

This seems like a losing battle too. Many Christians are adopting the morality of the world. They want to be in the majority. They don't want to be left outside. The world has captured them. They are claiming the world in exchange for their lives.

Things are apparently better as people are freed from the biblical standard. No one seems to notice the murders and robberies reported on a daily basis. I wonder why these are considered wrong. Couldn't the perpetrators simply claim to be spiritual and led to take what they wanted? Couldn't they say that they were ridding the world of a greater evil when they killed another person?

Some even claim they understand the acts of terrorism in France because of the cartoons drawn which mocked their religion. Who say those same things if Christians were so inclined to kill others in such acts of evil? We condemn those who kill the doctors who perform abortions. Who in their right mind would say this is good? There is no justice in murder. God does not condone murder.

So many times I hear people take the Bible out of context to justify their own evil. They have not read what it really says. They never understand it as a book which describes a loving God. They see only the parts and never the whole. Thus, they see it as an evil that brings about evil. Only those who take it out of context can use it to justify their evil. Only those who take it out of context deem it as evil.

So, good will continue to considered evil unless there is Someone who turns this all around. No number of sermons given by any number of believers can change things without a fresh breath of the Holy Spirit. Until Christians truly understand what it is to be spiritual those who claim to be spiritual will be just as spiritual as Christians.

It's an upside down world until that happens. I pray that God turns it right side up again.

3 comments:

Anthony Chia said...

Indeed, there is still that large pockets of Isaiah 5:20 seen all over the place. The world is still in a mess. It probably will continue to be in much mess; perhaps, even will get more worse before it gets better. Scripture talked about a very bad state of affair before the end shall come. But what then, is the right posture concerning this?

Put squarely the blame on God?! Some people do just that. We also have to be careful how we use such phrases like, "it is going to be same-same until God changes things around". If we speak such with the attitude of "it is all God's part", none our part (or my part), it is NOT right and NOT pleasing to God. In something, God does everything without men having to do anything, but in many things, especially, pertaining to morality or how we are to treat one another, God is expecting a part from Man. Often, we are expected to exercise our volition in the right direction; and to work with God. That we are to be the light and salt to the world, is about that. That we are to be history-maker in The Lord, is about that. That the poor widow put her only 2 copper coins in (by the world, too little to make a difference), is about that.

You can't beat them, you join them?! Many do that; and the dark principality (or Evil) is happy with that, that people join its side. There is the good and evil; there is the light and darkness, and there is the sweet and bitter. Since a long time ago, there has been 2 sides, the God's side, and the Satan or Evil's side; and they are at war, a long-drawn war, to men of so finite, a life-span (To the ants, our quarrel and stand off with another person that runs into months, is equally long-drawn!). People fight because their viewpoints are different, and each side holds to its viewpoint and propagates it, against the other, and so, we get what Isaiah talked about, in the passage. Now, God is good, Satan is evil, in my perspective (from the Word and from my Christian walk). We have to ask ourselves: which is good for all of mankind, God or Satan? And then, ask, which is good for me, personally. Life is about choices. You have to choose side. And at the highest level choosing, you don't choose based on convenience, expediency or immediate self-gractification. And it is NOT about whether or NOT, you alone is able to beat them. It is about good or evil, about right or wrong.

Cont...

Anthony Chia said...

Indeed, there is still that large pockets of Isaiah 5:20 seen all over the place. The world is still in a mess. It probably will continue to be in much mess; perhaps, even will get more worse before it gets better. Scripture talked about a very bad state of affair before the end shall come. But what then, is the right posture concerning this?

Put squarely the blame on God?! Some people do just that. We also have to be careful how we use such phrases like, "it is going to be same-same until God changes things around". If we speak such with the attitude of "it is all God's part", none our part (or my part), it is NOT right and NOT pleasing to God. In something, God does everything without men having to do anything, but in many things, especially, pertaining to morality or how we are to treat one another, God is expecting a part from Man. Often, we are expected to exercise our volition in the right direction; and to work with God. That we are to be the light and salt to the world, is about that. That we are to be history-maker in The Lord, is about that. That the poor widow put her only 2 copper coins in (by the world, too little to make a difference), is about that.

You can't beat them, you join them?! Many do that; and the dark principality (or Evil) is happy with that, that people join its side. There is the good and evil; there is the light and darkness, and there is the sweet and bitter. Since a long time ago, there has been 2 sides, the God's side, and the Satan or Evil's side; and they are at war, a long-drawn war, to men of so finite, a life-span (To the ants, our quarrel and stand off with another person that runs into months, is equally long-drawn!). People fight because their viewpoints are different, and each side holds to its viewpoint and propagates it, against the other, and so, we get what Isaiah talked about, in the passage. Now, God is good, Satan is evil, in my perspective (from the Word and from my Christian walk). We have to ask ourselves: which is good for all of mankind, God or Satan? And then, ask, which is good for me, personally. Life is about choices. You have to choose side. And at the highest level choosing, you don't choose based on convenience, expediency or immediate self-gractification. And it is NOT about whether or NOT, you alone is able to beat them. It is about good or evil, about right or wrong.

Cont...

Anthony Chia said...

Cont. From above

We, Chinese have a saying, "Ultimately, good will triumph over evil". Scripture painted to us the same thing - God (good) will triumph over Satan (evil). Scripture recorded God won against Satan in Heaven, and Satan and his minions are now down on earth, took over the earth which was God's, in the first place; and on earth, Satan was and is still propagating his reign and ways. Satan causes men to take his side, against God. John 10:10 painted for us, that Satan came to steal, kill and destroy, and Jesus, the Son of God, came that we may have life and life abundantly. Jesus came to reconcile men back to God. In other words, to get us back onto God's side. Heaven has invaded earth, we, Christians, are on God's side, battling against the other side, but we fight NOT by physical violence. Scripture said, "NOT by might nor by power but by the Spirit of God". Jesus showed the way; we are not called to murder but called to die, that we may live. We have to die to self, instead of joining the other side. Jesus' words in this regard, is this: "those who want to come after me, you have to deny yourself, carry your cross and follow me". We cannot flip-flop, and we cannot do a mutiny.

So what must we do, despite seeing Isaiah 5:20 still, happening? Don't let go of our hope, have faith in God, love God and love men, and do our little part, working with the Spirit of God. Be a bearer of hope, be an encourager, be loving. Be expanding the territory of our invasion; not the place, but the people, for the reign and kingdom of God is not about places, it is about the King (God) and his people, people who submit to His reign. The foundation of God's throne is clear, and is given us, in Scripture; one place we find it, is in Ps 89:14.

Be not moved from the fear of The Lord which is to hate evil (Pro 8:13).
Anthony Chia, high.expressions