Barking Up the Wrong Tree


For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion
so that they will believe the lie.
(2 Thessalonians 2:11)

I know I know I know.

The world is filled with enough imbeciles, idiots, ignoramuses, idolaters, illiterates, and illogical isms to make you—well, ill. You want to shake somebody silly. You want to kick some cultural keister. The whole thing is a ridiculous parade of partisan pimps and mindless immoral minions twerking their barren assets into your face. And what really gets your goat is that all those air-headed half-baked bozos seem to actually believe in the balderdash they believe in. You want to grab the entire political and social order by the lapels, shove it under a cold hard reality shower and pour a bucket of scalding high-caffeinated truth down its throat until it screams itself sober.

Yeah, well, good luck with that.

Go ahead. Dress your doctrinal ducks in demon resistant armor. Pack a double dose of Puritan powder into the barrel of your Bible. Call down the fire. Unleash on them the militant tongues of every portentous preacher and caustic politico like a plague of locusts. Release the whirlwind of righteous (cross-referenced) indignation. Batter Babylon with the full metal jacket of 4000 years of moral outrage. Go ahead. Let ‘er rip.

The true truth of the matter is that the folks on the other side of Salvation Street won’t get it. They’ll never get it. They can’t get it. You can explain until you’re blue with compassion (or red with conviction) and the poor sods will never ever figure out that they’re up a creek without a paddle or life jacket or even a canoe. You can sell them a spiritual lightbulb, but if there ain’t no power in the outlet they’re going to be enjoying their milk and honey in the dark.

Maybe we should give the walking dead a break. To expect them to be upright is downright unfair. To think that we can reason them to redemption is, well, unreasonable. What they need is to hear the radically ridiculous—emphasis ridiculous—Good News. (Do you remember it?) Then, if they turn to the Lord, they’ll get it. If they don’t, they won’t.

So if you’re not in the habit of telling them about the original fee-free Transformer, stop barking about how everything is going to hell in a hand basket. (But don’t expect any cherries on your redemption sundae either.) You only come off as a cranky religious doofus whom even Jesus probably finds annoying. Maybe it’s time we rethink our strategy.

The fruit’s on the other tree.

.   .   .



One Response

  1. Why don’t we ever remember the lost are lost and the blind are blind? Why do we expect them to get it like they’ve found what we have found and are simply not obeying God. Why would they want to obey a God they don’t know? God shows them grace and compassion, we need to do the same thing. There was no one Jesus deemed unworthy of his companionship. If we can’t love the lost with the love of Christ, let’s at least try to be friendly! We’re the ones empowered with a Spirit of love that sets captives free. Let’s try to use it.

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