In the past 70 plus years, society has plummeted to its greatest depths of degeneration and lawlessness. Crime, perverseness and evil are at an all time high! The trend is for more and more of the same.
Human society seems to be fast “losing its balance” and teetering on the brink of collapse into moral depravity and decay unprecedented in the history of the world. This trend toward lawlessness is becoming so shocking that criminologists, educators and religious leaders are gravely concerned and alarmed. If present trends continue, our American way of life will soon collapse into a dog-eat-dog era of cheating, lying, stealing, and general lawlessness that could bring national collapse more surely than a nuclear bomb attack!
Although we have always had crime, degeneration and lawlessness, there is something far more ominous and destructive underlying this new shocking situation, which, when understood becomes a cause for grave concern for you and me!
Whenever and wherever you find a law-abiding society, whether present today or historic, you will find present among its people an individual spiritual responsibility toward proper conduct that becomes a deterrent against crime and lawlessness. When a man, because of his own personal convictions, wills to be lawful, then law enforcement ceases to be a problem.
On the other hand, when you find a society composed of individuals who relax in their personal spiritual codes and responsibilities, you will find a lawless community. When a man within himself no longer wills to be law-abiding, troubles begins.
The reason our modern society is becoming decadent is because the One Great First Cause and reason for man to feel a spiritual responsibility is being removed. Our personal responsibility toward an all-powerful, omnipotent God who is Ruler, Lawgiver and Supreme Judge has all but disappeared.
When man forgets that God is watching, he no longer worries if society or law enforcement is watching, because he can hide from society and law enforcement! When a man no longer is concerned with sinning against his Creator, he is little concerned with sinning against his culture, especially if that culture allows a loose interpretation of the term sin.
Sin as a real factor is increasingly being ignored and made light of in modern society. The American public is learning to relax its moral codes and no longer includes spiritual sin as a positive element. Sin, which is the breach of God’s law of conduct, is becoming obsolete!
Our society has become so permeated with relaxed barriers, let-down attitudes, loose moral codes and impropriety that a man who censors his conduct based on the rules of Almighty God is becoming an extreme oddity if not a freak today.
The real key to our present social decay is that we are losing our sense of awareness of sin as a factor in human conduct. We no longer fear that our conduct, although condoned by society, might incur the wrath and penalty of an all-powerful God; and for this cause America is on the slippery precipice of moral disaster.
God warns us of the exact condition into which our American culture is racing. God tells us when we remove the awareness of Him as a factor in human conduct the inevitable result is degeneration. Notice: “And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not proper” (Rom. 1:28). The fruits of our society today are dramatic proof of the reprobate minds our people are developing. Yet, Almighty God foresaw these exact symptoms.
Notice it: “Being filled with unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents” (vs. 29-30).
The study of students enrolled in major colleges and universities in America showed the amazing truth of the attitudes and character of our young adults was revealed. The majority of the students interviewed took the view that: “Truth and honesty, far from being absolute, are matters that can be interpreted only in terms of a specific situation at a specific time in a specific place.” Any reference to comparisons with the codes of a Creator God were not even mentioned nor held in their understanding.
These young people who will become the backbone on our American society in the next few years all frankly admitted that the evidences of corruption, trickery, deceit and opportunism were everwhere on the international scene, shot through our national and political functions, in our social activities and even in the home. These students had to admit that the inevitable result was that this same tarnish is not only rubbing off on the younger generation, but is fast becoming the impetus of a “new way of life.”
One student’s frank remark was, “honesty and truth just don’t seem to have a place in anyone’s life anymore. Most people’s code of ethics shifts from day to day. It changes to fit the condition of that particular day’s situation.” Another senior from a prominent college in the East said, “Nothing is black and white anymore, most everything is gray. It’s hard to say what’s right or wrong.
“Truth, honesty, honor, loyalty, they are nice words, but they’re difficult things to come by nowadays.” This was a comment of a graduate student from a prominent university now working on his master’s degree in psychology.
Another student defined his concept of life in our modern society in the following terms: “This is a dog-eat-dog world, and if you have a chance of doing a little better than the next fellow, you should take advantage of it. Cheating goes on all over. People cheat on their taxes. There’s cheating in health plans. Big corporations engage in rigging bids and contracts. It’s part of our society. Everybody does it. I’d definitely do the same! Otherwise I’d be at a disadvantage. It’s being done. And I conform to it.”
In every walk of life, government, business, sports, recreation and just down-to-earth living, the modern approach is one of determinism.
Determinism is the outgrowth of so-called “advantaged knowledge” and is beginning to drastically affect and mold the American scene. This attitude of determinism, which states that a man is able to dictate his own conduct based solely upon each specific situation, time and place, does not leave room for the concept of Sin against an all-power God. Modern education and science is rapidly relegating God to the limbo of the superstitious or at best the antiquated and now unnecessary.
When mankind elects to determine his own fate, to “think for himself” and to decide his own future and his own patterns of conduct, he discards and leaves behind the concept of transgressions against eternal law. Sin, as a factor of human conduct, has become old fashioned and even childish.
As an individual in our modern society walks up and down the paths of social conduct today, his self-determining thoughts are not in terms of “is my conduct right and proper in God’s sight so that I am not incurring His wrath and penalty?” but rather on the basis of ‘is that going to pay off” and am I “getting away with it?”
God says, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (Ps. 111:10). In a Godless society where there is no fear of an Eternal God, there is lawlessness and evil. Our churches and religious groups today are taking the teeth out of religion and removing the fear of the Eternal.
At a church convention one of the leading Protestant denominations in this country said this: “Christianity must shed its pious pretenses, and admit it doesn’t have all the answers, if it expects to uphold spiritual reality in a science-dominated age. A new aestheticism must be practiced. The modern era has abandoned religion as a basis for real life and put its confidence in science instead. The new dimensions of our life make the image of God which we have inherited at least questionable, perhaps irrelevant or even ridiculous. We do not repudiate Him; we merely cease to live by Him.” Can Christian concepts such as these inspire a man to have a moral awareness of his God, and to feel a spiritual responsibility toward right moral conduct?
The United States of America no longer fears God! America has lost its awareness of sin! The American public is being given a spiritual “sleeping pill” which is lulling their minds to the subject of God and religion. As one courageous religious leader recently put it, “The Christian message is no longer played on a trumpet, but on a violin. It is a soothing, gentle lullaby. From too many pulpits we are being told that God is concerned primarily with keeping us from worry and discomfort. Religion becomes a spiritual aspirin tablet or a glass of divine ovaltine. The blame falls upon us who are the religious leaders of this generation. The crisis facing us is moral and spiritual. We will either get tougher in this realm, or we will lose our heritage.”
While this lullaby of dying religion and spiritual responsibility in America continues, the growing fad of self-determinism and dog-eat-dog survival of the craftiest is inoculating the minds of the American people. Moral conduct is being based on an entirely new set of rules. These rules do not include the concept of “this is the way, walk ye in it” (Isa. 30:21).
Unless we WAKE UP and heed the warning of the Eternal God, we are on a collision course with the most chaotic and lawless times that have ever occurred in the history of this nation. We need God’s answer! We need the solution that comes only from the Word of God.
America’s only hope is to “earnestly contend for the faith that was once delivered unto the saints” (Jude 3).We need to put the knowledge of God back in our understanding and learn once again to fear Him. We need to wake up and realize there is an all-powerful, omnipotent and mighty God who rules in heaven and in earth and who has the power of life and death, and that He is real and literal and actual! We need to fear and tremble before that God and realize He has the power of eternal life and eternal death.
This great and all-powerful God tells us what sin is! Man is not left to his own devices to decide what is right and what is wrong! God says, through His apostle John, ‘Whosoever committeth sin transgresses also the law: For sin is the transgression of the law” (I John 3:4).
God’s Ten Commandments, the real and true basis for human moral conduct are still and always will be the order of the day. And the sooner we return to obedience to God’s moral code of ethics and fear to disobey them, the sooner that nation will return to the peaceful, law-abiding society it so surely needs.
We need to put God back into our knowledge and to measure every social act and thought by God’s standards. Sin needs to again become a factor in human everyday life. When we begin to produce in the colleges and universities of our country young men and women who will censor their conduct based upon the precepts of God’s law, we will begin to have the solution to our country’s ills.
Although these terrible pronouncements will surely come to pass upon this nation unless we turn from our evil ways and begin to walk in God’s commandments, our personal responsibility is even more important! We need to realize our personal need to put back the concept of sin into our awareness. Otherwise, the most dreadful of all eventualities may occur to us!
God says, “For the wages of sin is death!” (Rom. 6:23.) Unless we personally wake up and realize what sin is and begin to fear our Eternal God, we could end up eternally damned! Notice the stern warning of God, “He that overcomes shall inherit all things: and I will be his God and he shall be my son. But the fearful, the unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Rev. 21:7-8).
The only hope of a nation on the brink of a black era of lawlessness and chaos is to put God back into our knowledge and wake up once again to the awareness that SIN is the transgression of the law of the Eternal God.