CGG Weekly, August 7, 2009
"Force without wisdom falls of its own weight."
Once, reason and common sense were valued in America. The Bible was upheld as both a religious and social guide, and citizens eyed outlandish and wild spending policies skeptically. The Ten Commandments hung in courthouses, teachers led their students in prayer before class, and a Presidential candidate would never confuse John 3:16 with John 16:3 (as John Kerry did campaigning in 2004). Nevertheless, the current administration has seemingly closed its eyes and covered its ears, ignoring reality and plunging headfirst into a bizarre world in which cause is severed from effect, consequences are merely old wives' tales, and truth is a bogey monster hiding under the bed with those two other fiends, morality and responsibility.
Maybe this is an exaggeration, but the President's change—which many wish that he would just keep—and the lack of reason underlying it are frankly absurd. One cannot help but shake his head after reading about the latest proposed bill and ask, "How could anyone think this is a good idea?" Yet, we are consistently assured, with wide smiles and unworried expressions, that all will work out for the best. And our leaders sincerely believe that it will.
How can they believe their policies will work? Harvard postgraduates, Yale Law School professors, and countless others with more letters behind than in their names support policies that to the average, middle-class citizen seem, not only unwise, but an affront to common sense. It all begins with a person's foundation. The Harvard PhD can cook up crazy ideas because he has developed a theoretical foundation on which to build them—one completely different from that of the average citizen with a traditional upbringing, and definitely one unlike ours, the Word of God.
In Matthew 7:24-27, Jesus Christ gives a stern warning against building on a questionable foundation. Leftist philosophy is built on such sandy ground as Christ describes. By analyzing its foundation, we can be wiser for understanding how Leftists construct their ludicrous policies. We can ensure that our thoughts, ideas, and beliefs are not being founded on similar falsehoods.
The foundation of Leftist thought can be reduced to two general assumptions. On these, the Left has built a house that is structurally sound in that it all logically follows its foundational ideas, but it will fall from the bottom up.
The first part of its sandy foundation can be termed the refusal of objectivity. This assumption is in reality a denial of truth, because, the argument goes, individuals are incapable of knowing what is real, and thus not capable of objectivity. This false thinking asserts that one cannot unequivocally know reality—from the chair one is sitting on to the earth itself—for a human being is removed from reality through the sensory information he receives. For example, we see the letters on a page because of the light reflecting on our retinas, not because we are seeing the actual ink on the paper. Therefore, they reason, our individual minds, each with its own idiosyncrasies and biases, ultimately perceive a different, subjective reality. People cannot be objective, they argue, because the reality one perceives is different from that of everyone else.
This is often called relativism, but because of this term's frequent usage, its truly radical nature is diminished. Truly, it is the ultimate idolization of the self. From this premise arises the rejection of morality and truth, value and meaning, justice and love; for if no two individuals can perceive the same reality, how can one say that he is right and the other wrong? The recent Supreme Court appointee, Sonya Sotomayor, has confessed her faith in the refusal of objectivity in the context of the law, arguing that wise judgments are produced through individual experience, rather than judging against a legal standard.
The Bible has a contrarian view. It reveals that God created the earth with immutable truths. He has given His children minds to comprehend those truths and even a common conscience through which all understand at least a basic, universal morality (Romans 2:14-15). God is an irrefutable Reality, and the Source of reality (Colossians 1:16). The covenant name of God in the Old Testament, YHWH, means essentially "He was, He is, and He will be." Building on this, in Colossians 1:17, Paul states that "in [Christ] all things consist." We must ground all of our ideas on the reality of God and the truths revealed in His Word.
The second half of the sandy foundation is the rejection of causality. This doctrine denies that an action necessitates resounding consequences. In other words, if a solution is beneficial now, it is accepted without considering its long-term effects. This reasoning naturally grows out of the first premise, as consequences are considered only in terms of how they immediately affect a group or single person, ignoring its impact on everyone over time. This is pragmatism, best represented by Obama's current reckless spending, throwing away billions of dollars in hopes of stimulation; but its intended, restorative effect will vanish as soon as the pressure is released. Our country will end up in worse shape than before.
Again, God's Word provides a clear refutation of this false premise in the simple but profound adage, "Whatever a man sows, that he will also reap" (Galatians 6:7). Our actions, despite how isolated we may presume them to be, inevitably affect others, spreading like ripples in a pond, disturbing the entire body of water. We reap growth of character by sowing righteousness every day, beginning with following the simplest of God's laws to the greatest. As an unintended consequence, we shine as examples for others and sow countless seeds. Alternatively, we may reap death on others and ourselves by sowing sin (Romans 6:23). Whether positive or negative, every action has a real consequence—a fact that many today ignore, but one we cannot lest we call God a liar (Genesis 2:17).
Much of the world's faulty, demonic systems of thought are built on this sandy, shifting ground, and so the foundation is being swept away in the floods of hardship we are now experiencing. To guard ourselves from a similar fate, we must examine ourselves and become aware of the foundation on which we build our thoughts and ideas. Once on sure ground, we can have confidence that, not only will the current absurdities and assaults against God's wisdom fail, but also that the Rock on which we rest, Jesus Christ, will, even in our hardest trial, never leave us, never forsake us (Hebrews 13:5).