They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen~ Romans 1:25 NIV
The year 2018 did not go down in history as a legislative win for the old and sick in the state of Oregon. In early 2018 the Oregon State Senate passed House Bill 4135 into law. This “landmark piece of legislation” allows “health care professionals” to permanently withhold food and water from dementia patients.
Seriously. Let the magnitude of that sink in for a minute.
I get that a bill that was signed into law years ago is old news. I also get that these types of laws have become so routine that only a few hardcore, pro-life nut-jobs (like me) even get excited about them anymore. I mention it now because this morning I read an article reporting that the Oregon Legislature is looking to expand the law to include a broader class of people than just dementia patients (Isaiah 5:20).
Because my brain works in strange ways (that I don’t even understand most of the time) the article got me thinking about lies and deception. More specifically it got me thinking about the lies and deceptions our culture has come to believe and how those deceptions are directly contributing to the moral quagmire we find ourselves in. Some of the lies are subtle others are more obvious. The problem with lies is that all lies hurt people and lead both the liar and those who believe the lie away from God, biblical justice and good sense (Isaiah 59:14).
After I read the article I made a quick mental list of some the lies we have come to believe. There were so many I had a tough time whittling the list down to a number that would be readable in reasonable period of time.
Here are the top five:
#1- Expediency should be the north star that guides our decision making-
This is the lie that inspires otherwise decent people to do away with the old, sick and those who have yet to be born. Any time convenience becomes the end goal of any situation, a corner must be cut somewhere. This is not a huge loss if we are talking about purchasing bakery cupcakes to save ourselves a little time and effort. It is a huge loss to all the good things that make us human if we are cutting lives short in an effort to pander to our own desire for expediency and convenience (Proverbs 11:19).
#2- Right now is all that matters-
We have evolved into a “live in the now” kinda culture. Nowhere is this more obvious than with with children and gender transitions. In some places three-year-old children are being socially transitioned and kids as young nine are being surgically and chemically transitioned to a sex other than the one they were assigned at conception. The reasoning behind this madness is that these kids want what they want “right now”. God forbid anyone deny a child something they want right this minute (Proverbs 22:15a). Few “professionals” are thinking through the possible psychological, physical, emotional and spiritual consequences these choices might have on kids long-term. Sadly, even fewer people are asking why anyone would allow a human being who is not fully grown to consent to something that can never really be fully undone (Proverbs 20:25).
#3- People should only do what makes them happy-
Happiness is a feeling or mood that tends to be short-lived and extremely centered on self. Finding happiness is complicated by the fact that even under the most ideal of circumstances happiness is something that is challenging to hang onto. As a result, once we begin down the path of “making ourselves happy” the pursuit of happiness becomes a never-ending quest that is nearly impossible to achieve or maintain. This is partly because the stuff that make us happy (or unhappy) tends to change frequently. On Tuesday donuts might make me supremely happy and on Friday the mere thought of them might make me queasy. Because happiness is such an unstable and selfish emotion when we do things solely for the sake of our personal happiness we tend to hurt a lot of people (including ourselves) in the process of “making ourselves happy”.
#4- Government has all the answers-
For the record, I do not believe that individual people who work in government are evil, they are just people. That being said, government is not a person. Government is a big giant soulless entity. All soulless entities lack sensitivity, ethics, logical thought, and wisdom. Therefore, government cannot logic out the needs of individuals or make sensible judgments about individual situations. Even in the best of situations government is all about one-size-fits-all solutions. We should always remember that nothing loves expediency and convenience more than a big giant soulless entity.
#5- If I believe something is true then it is-
This is the lying-est lie of them all. Sadly, this lie has become accepted dogma because we have taught that feelings about a given issue should be given the same legitimacy as verifiable facts regarding the same issue. As a result, any triggering of hurt feelings (no matter how silly the origin) is cause for alarm and sometimes even corrective action. It looks and feels compassionate to care excessively about a person’s feelings. However, feelings are just feelings, they aren’t always based on what’s real. It is critical we remember that feelings have never set anyone free from anything but truth sets people free all the time (John 8:32).
It’s simply a fact: Christians cannot force the culture to be wise, forward thinking or God-centered.
That said, when we, as Christ-followers consistently pray for wisdom and discernment and then choose to live out what we say believe God gives His people (us) the ability to lead our friends and neighbors in a better, more life-giving direction. If enough individual people change their thinking the culture changes.
We should all long for that day.