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Indignation

September 9, 2006

A quarter score years and a few days ago, the World Trade Center was leveled by ground school drop-outs. The WTC had long since displaced the Statue of Liberty as the icon of the city in which it stood. The Statue of Liberty is still standing…today. I emailed a friend, “I miss New York terribly.” He wrote back, “It’s still there.” Life was lost, but God spared many from that judgment.

I was, and still am, indignant about the attack. B. B. Warfield, in an essay titled, “The Wrath of Man,” calls indignation “an inevitable reaction of a moral being in the presence of wrongdoing, and it is not mererly his right, but his duty to give it play when righteousness demands it. No doubt we are to seek peace and ensue it. But this is the peace not of the condonation of evil, but of the conquest of it.”

Indignation is a Christian duty because of the presence of sin. And sin can be packaged so prettily in our pagan world. J. Gresham Machen, in Christianity and Liberalism, defines paganism as “that view of life which finds the highest goal of human existence in the healthy and harmonious and joyous development of existing human faculties.” Well, that pretty much sums up the best of all non-Christian philosophy and the bread of life of all those Romans 10:3 people who live by their own righteousness, doesn’t it. The good life. And every now and then it gets singed a little, but the enemy is reconfigured by pagan minds and made out to be entities, rather than sin.

I was brought up on the Big Bang gospel and the doctrines of humanism. John Byl, in God and Cosmos, calls the Big Bang theory, “the creation myth of the naturalists.” I think that is exactly what it is. Every culture has a creation myth, absent the revealed Word of God and the Spirit’s work to grant belief. We live in a very resourceful culture. My parents lived through the Great Depression, and “making something from nothing” was part of my lexicon from the beginning. They were clever people, and I thought they were terrific at it, too. So “something from nothing” seemed plausible and I never questioned it. After all, the universe was bigger than my parents.

God in his mercy took away the Good and Plenty candy and turned on the lights and the horrible movie was over. I am not indignant over the way I was raised; my parents sinned in ignorance and God overcame the world on my behalf. I am sad for my parents. They’ve been gone a long time, I’m quite certain without hope. But I am indignant about the world they participated in building for me, for it continues to call evil good and good evil. They nevertheless enabled me to flourish in God’s garden, unbeknownst to them. Those that are planted in the house of Jehovah shall flourish in the courts of our God (Ps 92:13).

5 comments:

Victorbravo said…
Yes, being indignant over evil is the right thing to do. I was reminded of Morecraft’s summary of duties of Christians and the church regarding politcs:Expose, refute, correct, and call to repentence the evil magistrate when it fails to obey the law of God.

We aren’t called to riot, rebel, or ram-rod change through power politics. Instead, we are to be as prophets, drawing from the Word of God and not our own wisdom.

1:39 PM  
Zack said…
I am very indignant with the coyotes for their underhanded attempts to consume the chickens. I am a very moral being.
8:32 AM  
Las Gallinas said…
You don’t get it, Zack. We have negotiated an alliance with the coyotes to undermine you.
8:37 AM  
Mike Pitzler said…
Yes. We worship a God who kills. He even killed his Son. And killed us with him. How blessed the man who is killed by God in Christ and has part in the first resurrection.(Imagine how strange that sounds to unbelievers?)

8:38 AM  
Zack said…
Oh chickens chickens. How can you be so stupid.
6:06 PM  
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