Wednesday, June 3, 2020

The Root Cause

There are many of us in the church who think of eschatology as an esoteric topic that is best left to those who have the time to invest in its study. Not only do I not have the time (or, perhaps I should say I do not want to take the time), but I find the subject rather difficult and requiring more intense and dedicated study that I can ever give it. Add to that the fact that, when one deals with something that is yet to happen, the likelihood of being wrong is quite high! Thus, although the Bible teaches concerning the things that are yet to come, there are many areas, such as the events preceding the Second Coming, that are quite difficult and in which there is no way to know whether one is right, until the events take place. Without a doubt, whether one is right about one eschatological position or another, we will all find out once the end comes.

That being said, however, I can’t but wonder if the events that we are witnessing all around us these days may not be a portent of the end. We began the year rather benignly, and not unlike many other years that preceded it. The issue that was occupying our minds, at least in this country, was the political scene and the then democratic battle for the presidential nomination. Fast forward a couple of months and everything changed. Although COVID had been an issue for a few months in the Far East, it really wasn’t anything that anyone on this side of the Pacific had any concerns about. I remember reading the news snippets about it on a daily basis complete with the count of how many Chinese had been infected and how many had died as a result of the illness.

I dare say, however, that practically no one was paying attention to what, at the time, was seen as a Chinese-only problem. In the months since, COVID has become very much our problem. Our country and most of the world came to a virtual halt. Businesses were closed. Airlines were brought to a virtual standstill. The economy practically collapsed with millions unemployed (the largest number since the Great Depression) and we were treated by our ever expanding and more nanny-like government to a splurge of “stimulus spending.” One has to wonder just where all those trillions of dollars came from (although, the reality is that it’s simply “funny money”; they just print it without anything to back it up!).

And now, as though there were not enough problems to occupy our attention, we have the issue with the death of George Floyd. I have purposely stayed away from all the brouhaha surrounding that sad event. And I don’t do so because of who he was, or who is involved, or anything else along those lines. I simply detest watching the newscasts because they are usually little more than hyperventilation about this or that “crisis” or just another session of surreptitious (although not so surreptitious anymore) liberal propaganda. But as the country has been engulfed in an ever-increasing wave of violence and plain out madness, it’s become necessary to say something about it, from the biblical point of view.

As with other events of this nature, one hears a lot of talk about so-called “root causes.” All the internet psychologists are out in force trying to educate us on what is the “real” cause of the events we’re witnessing. Of course, the latest pop psychology is that all this goes back to the slavery issues of the 19th century (and its attendant racism), which lead then and leads whites now to oppress blacks and blacks to have to cry foul at whatever perceived or real grievances they may have. Let me be clear. What took place in the life of Mr. Floyd is not only a tragedy, but also murder. No one should be confused as to what exactly the police officers involved did. From the little I saw on the tape that has made the rounds on the newscasts, there was one individual perpetrating the physical assault while at least one other was “standing guard.” Thus, both of them should be tried for murder.

Here’s my contention. I do not dispute the facts of the case. But what I dispute is what led to all this. And I’m not just speaking about the actual murder. I’m also referring to what has ensued in the wake of his death. The riots and looting that have taken place, are a clear sign, if any others were needed, of the sinfulness and depravity of man. No doubt many will take issue with my description of such folks in these harsh terms. But this is not my original understanding. I can’t take credit for coming up with this idea. I didn’t invent the fact that men, without failure and without exception, are all depraved. Take a look at what Paul, quoting the Psalms, has to say about it.

As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:
There is none that understandeth, there is none that
seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they
are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth
good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulcher; with
their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is
under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness:
Their feet are swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery
are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known:
There is no fear of God before their eyes. (Romans 3:10-18, KJV)

What more needs to be said about the issue than what the inspired writer penned 20 centuries ago? Whenever I see folks bloviating about this or that root cause or how people are so frustrated that they can’t help but act in the riotous way they do, I want to scream! Especially when I hear such things coming from Christians who should inow better. Folks, it is sin and depravity that brings about all this mess. Not your upbringing, not your surroundings, not your mom or your dad. And if we don’t understand this, how can we understand anything? You want to make a difference? Begin by understanding what the issue really is. Then you’ll be well equipped to speak to the true causes and the only solution: the blood of Christ!!


  1. If I was one inclined to seize events as portending the end, this year would be a doozy. Truth is - I have no idea. What I DO know, however, is that this crazily excessive reaction to the unfortunate (and criminal) death of Mr. Floyd cannot justify the looting, arson and anarchy that followed. I am, I must admit, somewhat shocked by the paper thin fragility of much of our society. It does work to confirm to me that any hope outside of Christ - in government, in any basic "goodness" in man, in basic civility and decency is a waste of time and an illusion.

    1. I don't blame the folks outside the church who hold a lot of these warped ideas. Sure, they're responsible for their ignorance and actions. But being dead in sin they can't be expected to act like anything but dead in sin people. But what really is extremely sad and distressing is that many in the church have the exact same mindset. How is it possible that someone who has been made alive in Christ can engage in such mindless claptrap? It really makes one wonder what will be of the church if we really experience persecution one day! Blessings.