Issue 817 – Up in the Air – August 5, 2022

CF-18 Hornet RCAF - Courtesy of Abbotsford International Air Show
RCAF CF-18 Hornet _ Courtesy of Abbotsford International Air Show 2022

The neighbourhood has been alive with low-flying, circling jet fighters’ screams for the past few days. They are practicing for this weekend’s 2022 Abbotsford International Air Show, one of Canada’s premiere airshows.

When I lived on or near military bases, such sounds just became background noise, as might the sound of trains, highways or sirens to others. It is no longer an everyday occurrence, so I hear each and every pass they make in their circuit.

It isn’t a big deal, just a minor annoyance. To people in many parts of the world, though, that scream represents conflict near to them and danger. It isn’t a sound that the people of Ukraine probably find very reassuring at the moment.

The world is a place of enormous conflict and has been ever since shortly after the fall from grace in Eden. Whether it is one-on-one violence, local turmoil, or all-out world war, the conflict never ceases as people seek to exert their power over others or take their resources.

Surely, things would improve if we all played nice and tried to get along. Wouldn’t they? Sorry, that might help sometimes, but it doesn’t solve the problem.

Left to their own devices, people are not good. We want what we want and are willing to do whatever it takes to obtain it. We either fall into the camp of the powerless victim or the bullying oppressor. Most of us have been in both camps at one point or another.

There is a persistent myth that people are inherently good, but that Isn’t what the Bible teaches.

We are totally depraved.

That does not mean we all are as bad as we can be. Even the evilest person likely has deeper depths they can descend into.

It means that all of our beings, minds, hearts, souls, bodies and spirits are warped because of our sinful nature and the imputation of Adam’s original sin.

That is hardly good news or politically correct. Everyone, even the worst sociopath or psychopath, wants to be thought of as a nice person at times.

As it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.”  Romans 3:10-12

Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. Luke 18:19

The well-intentioned “improve children by building their self-esteem movement” is bound to fail to bring about a nicer world. The primary problem isn’t one of a poor view of oneself but is a problem of a broken nature.

Building self-esteem has its place but cannot change a person’s foundational nature. Nor can any amount of hard work or religious duties. No amount of being nice can make you holy enough to get right with God.

We must be born again and given a new nature; God must redeem us from the penalty of our sin. We must be fundamentally transformed from the inside out.

That can only happen through the grace of Christ at work in us and happens one person at a time.

There will be conflict in this world until Christ comes in the final judgement, sending the redeemed to glory and the condemned to eternal torment.

Certainly, we are called all we can do to seek justice, show compassion and be peacemakers. All Christians are called into those roles as ambassadors for Christ. We are called to tell others about the love and mercy of Christ and warn of impending judgment for those who turn from Him.

Any results, any fruit from our efforts can only come from the work of the Holy Spirit.

In the interim, we do what we can do, knowing that we can never end the problem ourselves and hold tight to the power of Christ at work in us. God remains in control. 

Hallelu Yah (Praise God)

Be blessed

Kevin.

Gleanings From The Word.

Experience an extraordinary God in ordinary life. 

Soli Deo Gloria (for the glory of God alone.)

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All contents are © 2001, 2022 K. F. “Kevin” Corbin and Gleanings From The Word.

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Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the English Standard Version (ESV).

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