Monday, October 29, 2012

The Lunatic (The Six Shades of Sin, Part IV)

"Woe unto them who call evil good and good evil, who count darkness as light and light as darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!" Is. 5:20

Immorality is frowned upon as a term because it reeks of prudish pedantry. It conjures up the image of a great, waving index finger in the sky and a disembodied voice crying, "Thou shalt not!" Of course, we all acknowledge that people do "bad" things (for no one is perfect), but the term "immorality" seems made up by some unholy alliance between wet blankets and killjoys, the private codification of buzz-killers. This is because we have a skewed view of immorality (and subsequently, morality). If we view immorality as a path to all the finer (or at least, more exciting) pleasures of life, then morality cannot help but be seen as a divergence from everything enjoyable. Nobody wants that, and truthfully nobody should want that, if that is what it is.

Unfortunately, that is not what it is, and here is how skewed our view is. Morality is not and has never been a divergence from all good things; immorality is. It is the great refusal, the negation and rejection, the complete turning away from and falling out of the right path. It is with God that all joy and pleasures dwell (Ps. 16:11), but we have all gone astray (Is. 53:6). That is the true meaning of immorality: not a surrender to pleasure, but a denial of it. You are not a seeker but a strayer. You have left the course to Canaan to wander in the wilderness, and out there all those who wander are lost.

Charles Williams once said, "Hell is inaccurate." What he meant was that Hell (and by extension all wickedness), in diverging and pulling away from God, cannot help but consistently fall into error. To put it simply, Hell is stupid. It believes stupid things, thinks stupid things, and says stupid things. It calls good evil and darkness light. Idiocy is the very hallmark of evil, and for every wickedness there is a foolishness attached to it (whether it be foolish actions, foolish principles, or both).  For example, anyone who has ever done something wrong (of whatever degree) assumes a supremacy over the law (of whatever kind). They assume that they are greater than and smarter than the present authority, whether it be the police or their parents. They consider the consequences of their actions to be of no consequence, until (of course) they get caught. Then the absurdity of their actions falls upon them, and they become painfully aware that they were ants mocking a whirlwind.

It is the same with us and God. Those who do evil think their actions of no consequence because they deem Him to be of no consequence. It is folly. It is absurdity. It is lunacy. Every act of evil is lunacy, whether it is stealing cookies from the cookie jar or 9-11. Every act is a skewing, a swerve, a divergence, an act of unreality. To do evil is to turn away from the light of the law and be caught in a perpetual fog, and to be evil is to be that fog, thickening with every additional atrocity until your self-wrought stupification solidifies into a permanent, horrifying imbecility. Hell is the only fit place for such a terrible breaking down of the heart and mind, for Hell is inaccurate, the lunatic asylum of the universe.

If lunacy lies with evil, then sanity lies with good: not just a calming of mind and heart but also a continual clarity of mind and heart. Every act of true virtue is like a shaft of light cutting through a dark room, and the virtuous life fills its house with the dawn. Now, the height of virtue is to love God (Matt. 22:37-38), and the greatest way that we love God is to keep His commands (John 14:23-24). And what is His greatest command? That we should believe on the Lord Jesus Christ (I John 3:22-23), for He is the roadway to and source of all light (John 1:4-5; 8:12; 12:44-46; I John 1:5-7). In short, to believe in Christ is the ultimate sanity because Christ is the ultimate sanity, for He brings us to God. But for those who would diverge from His path, they will only find Hell, the home of all madmen who turn to their own way.

-Jon Vowell (c) 2012

No comments:

Post a Comment