Tuesday, July 15, 2014


I was reading Isaiah 2 this afternoon and came across a passage which describes the wicked Israelites of his day but which also applies to ours. Here is what it says (Gileadi's translation):

Their land is full of silver and gold
      and there is no end to their wealth;
Their land is full of horses
      and there is no end to their chariots.
Their land is full of idols:
      they adore the works of their hands,
      things their own fingers have made.
Mankind is brought low
      when men thus debase themselves.
Forbear them not!

These are some of the distinguishing characteristics of both (i.e. ancient Israel and modern civilization) wicked societies:
  1. Their land is full of silver and gold: Incomparable and unequal wealth.
  2. Their land is full of horses and chariots: Horses and chariots are implements of war. Both societies are obsessed with building armies and navies and amassing guns and other instruments of death and destruction.
  3. They worship (adore) the work of their hands: Materialism is rampant and acquiring wealth and objects are obsessions. 
  4. Mankind is brought low when men thus debase themselves: Wickedness is so widespread that mankind as a whole is debased by it.
Our challenge is rise above this trend to wholesale and all encompassing wickedness. This description reminds me of Enoch's vision of the wickedness of Noah's day (and by extension our day) in Moses 7:

26 And he beheld Satan; and he had a great chain in his hand, and it veiled the whole face of the earth with darkness; and he looked up and laughed, and his angels rejoiced.

 28 And it came to pass that the God of heaven looked upon the residue of the people, and he wept; and Enoch bore record of it, saying: How is it that the heavens weep, and shed forth their tears as the rain upon the mountains?

 29 And Enoch said unto the Lord: How is it that thou canst weep, seeing thou art holy, and from all eternity to all eternity?
 32 The Lord said unto Enoch: Behold these thy brethren; they are the workmanship of mine own hands, and I gave unto them their knowledge, in the day I created them; and in the Garden of Eden, gave I unto man his agency;

 33 And unto thy brethren have I said, and also given commandment, that they should love one another, and that they should choose me, their Father; but behold, they are without affection, and they hate their own blood;

 37 But behold, their sins shall be upon the heads of their fathers; Satan shall be their father, and misery shall be their doom; and the whole heavens shall weep over them, even all the workmanship of mine hands; wherefore should not the heavens weep, seeing these shall suffer?

 40 Wherefore, for this shall the heavens weep, yea, and all the workmanship of mine hands. (emphasis added)

 The result of this gross wickedness is misery - nothing more. The reason why God hates wickedness so forcefully is that it brings so much misery to the human family and he is likewise pained by witnessing this suffering.

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