“You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. “
—Matthew 5: 21-22 (Sermon on the Mount)
“If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?”
― Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago 1918-1956
Solzhenitsyn came to recognize the truth…the hard spiritual truth… that Jesus spoke of and revealed when He taught his disciples on the shores of the Sea of Galilee (ie., “The Sermon on the Mount”, Matthew 5-7 ). Solzhenitsyn learned this epiphanous lesson the hard way as he suffered in the prison cell of the Soviet gulag “re-education” system. (An experience that in hindsight he called a blessing)
The truth and reality of the human condition never ‘goes down’ easy. But what he learned there in the bleak, frozen, Siberian wilderness transformed his life and revived his soul.
We today in the “progressive” West , live in an age so convoluted and twisted into “enlightened” modernist and postmodernist knots that we have lost our true spiritual bearings. We live in a festering fog of facts, philosophies and foolishness, and we proudly pat ourselves on the back for being so “open-minded” and “tolerant” about it all…..
In the meantime, the words of Jesus remain tragically obscured by the “friendly”, frenetic, glitz and glamor and of the Self-absorbed, Me-First present age.
Predictably, we seek to avoid the hard gospel Truth at all cost….(We would rather be stroked and entertained by the “philosophies of men”.)
Take the Kumbaya-Way Out!
Aleks! …Please!....Go watch some Oprah!
What you need is therapy!
Have a heart, and lighten up, sir!
Try some Post-Modernity!
Get a grip, man!...Don’t be silly!
Take it back!...Why, dude, so bleak?
CURSE your stupid “poor in spirit”!!!
We ain’t paddlin’ up your creek!
“Evil-talk” like that’s NOT healthy!
Truth is, man, it’s downright RUDE!
What you need’s RE-education!
Yep, a PROPER of attitude!
Your scenario’s a bummer!
Heaven knows, you’re WAY off base!
Aleks, we’re just here to help you…
You just need a change of pace!
You need Worldview Deconstruction!
Take the Kumbaya-Way out!
All you really need is love, man…
(That’s what life is all about!)
Lord, have mercy, please upon us.
Give us Grace to see again….
Help us recognize the darkness.
Yes , the awfulness of Sin.
Help us recognize the guilt, Lord,
That we try so hard to hide.
Stab the Light of Truth right through us,
Call your Bride out to your side.
“In keeping silent about evil, in burying it so deep within us that no sign of it appears on the surface, we are implanting it, and it will rise up a thousand fold in the future. When we neither punish nor reproach evildoers, we are not simply protecting their trivial old age, we are thereby ripping the foundations of justice from beneath new generations.”
— Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn The Gulag Archipelago: 1918-1956
"A great deal of the theological impotence of our generation can be traced to what our ancestors would have called a severely deficient sense of the horrible sinfulness of sin."
—Dr. Donald Williams