Lawlessness abounds in our day. One of the most obvious places to note it is on our freeways and highways. Automobiles are built to safer standards every year, but today motorists are driving crazier and acting less-respectful as they push their cars and the nerves of themselves and others to the limit. Where there are three lanes, the old driving standard of a fast-speed lane on the left, moderate-speed lane in the middle and slow-speed lane to the right, has practically disappeared. All lanes have become high speed lanes. The new “law” is to look for the open lane and let her rip. Today many drivers dive into openings barely the size of their own car. And sometimes they don’t make it. Another driver in an opposite lane sees the same hole and he/she dives into it at the same time. They crash and go into tailspins. I’ve seen this happen right before my eyes. Have you noticed the increase in this madness? Freeways have become like a racetrack. “Highway Chivalry”, a common practice in former days, is seldom observed nowadays.
God’s perfect timing and how He shows His awareness of our daily activities never cease to amaze me. The above paragraph is all I planned to write on that subject, but I think God wanted to confirm what I am saying.
I drive to Sacramento twice a week to work at the V.A. eye clinic as an optometrist. (This is no longer true as I write at this time, but I’m leaving it in this article just to make a point.) Here’s a resume of what happened yesterday as I was making the 30 mile jaunt. I had just entered the freeway from my home, driving in the “slow” lane. All of a sudden another car paralleling me drifted over a bit into my lane. I watched guardedly and moved a little to my right towards the shoulder to keep a safe distance away from the other car. Between gulps of her breakfast, she noticed what had happened and then corrected her car’s position and got back in her lane.
In the remainder of the trip to Sacramento, I would say there were no less than 20 cars which made reckless moves in front of me and others. All this juggling just to be perhaps one car length further down the road than they were before. These same cars are often seen later as they get bogged down in a lane they can’t maneuver out of. Just before I got to my destination, another woman dove into my lane barely missing me and quickly came to a stop at a traffic light. Just for double emphasis, ironically, she was also finishing her breakfast, totally oblivious to the fact that I had just made allowance for her by braking so that she could occupy her new spot.
Right after I got to work, one of the optometry students who I supervise was telling another student and I about how awful it was on the freeway this morning. The wind was blowing strongly from the North today. “Did you see it?”, she asked. “The air was filled with debris and you could see these mini-tornado-like whirlwinds.” (I saw a truck which had been completely blown off the road.) “It was blowing my car around so much that I had to slow down to 65...”, she went on. (The maximum speed limit on this freeway is 65 MPH.) You get the picture. Please understand that this young woman is a very-intelligent, otherwise-very-level-headed individual. Conclusion of this madness? Somehow, out there on the freeway these days, it’s as if many people become something other than their usual self.
In a Littleton, Colorado high school a few days ago, two young men dressed in trench coats shot and killed an estimated 15 people and injured 20 or so others, then committed suicide. They also had planted a number of bombs, obviously hoping to kill others later.
And Kosovo, what’s this all about? In a sentence, one ethnic group against another, determined to move the undesirables out of their space. Racial differences has always been the breeding ground for releasing inward, evil passions.
Although obviously quite different, all the above scenarios have similarities. “You’re in my lane, buddy, move over.” “I don’t like your hair.” “I don’t like the way you look.” “I don’t like the fact that you think you are better than me”. “I don’t like anything about you and I am willing to back up my dislike by killing you”. “You’re in my territory.” “I’ll prove that I am better than you and I’ll do whatever it takes to move you out.”
There are many other awful conditions we could name, but I think you get the point. I believe that we can all agree that conflicts and lawlessness abound everywhere these days. It’s a seemingly-out-of-control, world-wide syndrome.
What is this all about?
I can tell you for sure that the news people who do the continual inquiry spins on these things do not know the answers. Not only that, most of them really don’t want to know the answers for that would stop the money-making machine. Oh, some of them look pretty sincere with their constant barrage of intelligent-sounding questions. However, an incredible consistency is that often they are interviewing naive folks who know virtually nothing about these evil matters. Occasionally they will slip up and interview someone who really does understand the problem and have insights on the solution. When this happens, you can be sure that this wiser individual will be interrupted by something, “Sorry, we must break for a commercial”, or “O, we just ran out of time”. I’m sure every reader has witnessed what I’m talking about.
Does the Bible Address These Issues?
Actually, all three of the above-described situations involve the same driving force. Let’s call it a “spirit of lawlessness”. It is double-barreled, involving both natural and supernatural powers. Fallen-sinful man and all his brothers and sisters can take credit for the natural source. Fallen-sinful Satan and all his demonic emissaries can take credit for the supernatural part.
The new “law” in our day which is replacing our previous laws seems to be to “do what is right in your own eyes”. It’s actually an old law just being revived. If you care to read it you’ll find it described in the ancient Hebrew Bible (the Old Testament) in the book of Judges. Many Greek Bible Scriptures (the New Testament) come immediately to mind which relate to the mass insanity we see occurring today.
For example, perilous times for the last days were predicted by the apostle Paul in 2 Timothy 3. In verse 7 he sumarizes the downward spiral of humanity this way: “...always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth”. It reflects the out-of-control sin-nature of fallen man rising to the full. Symptoms of these terrible conditions were described as “...men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good (remember what I said about the news folks disregarding real answers), traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,...” (2 Ti. 3:2-4). How clear! If the media really wanted to know the answers to the problems of mankind today, these words should be headlines in the New York & L.A.Times, the Atlanta Constitution, the Sacramento Bee, and all the other newspapers in the U.S.A.
On the supernatural side is Satan, of course. The entire Bible describes the vileness of Satan. He has many names which describe his character. He’s called “Lucifer”, the “devil”, the “dragon”, the “god of this world”, the “prince of the power of the air”, “angel of light”, to name a few. Satan was already all of these things even in the garden of Eden when he first approached, tempted and deceived Eve. Eve was Satan’s trapdoor to Adam, who also was deluded by this supernatural being. Together, they disobeyed God and thrust the whole human race into captivity of Satan.
Of course, all true Christians know that Jesus defeated the devil. The serpent has been “de-fanged” and de-throned. Where we (the Church) are concerned, in the long-range scheme of things, it’s already as if he doesn’t exist. But on a practical scale, God gave this slithering snake some time to continue his determined effort to tempt humanity to follow and serve him. And, indeed, whether they know it or not, much of humanity has been deceived and are following Satan and his army of demons. Although unseen by the natural eyes, there’s a real, supernatural force out there, my friends. In spite of the fact that we Christians are insulated in our spirit man against the devil in terms of long-range guarantees and benefits, the dragon continues his warfare against both us and those who don’t know Christ. He tries to thwart and undermine the Godly efforts of Christians, while simultaneously blinding the unsaved with his myriad of deceptive “light”. He gives people irritating, evil and murderous thoughts. He superimposes his ideas on human minds.
And people are listening to Satan and his lies. This too was predicted for our day. In 1 Timothy 4:1 we are told, “Now the Spirit expressly says that in the latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared wtih a hot iron, forbidding to marry (men and women shacking together, unmarried, and probably also suggests the sin of sodomy),...”., etc.
“But the devil has been busy doing all these things throughout the whole Christian era”, someone says. That’s definitely true. In fact, ever since Adam first fell. But the above Scripture, and others, are talking about intensified evil. Evil at full level. It’s not that these evils haven’t always been around. It’s just getting worse and worse. In Revelation 12 we find an absolute clear word on this. There it describes Satan’s having been cast out of heaven along with one-third of the angels of God, which of course had already happened before Adam and Eve were created. But if we study this passage carefully, along with all the prophetic Scriptures, we find that the passage is referring to the devil’s stepped-up, intensified efforts which rise to the full during the endtimes just prior to Jesus’ Second Advent (when He shall establish His throne and Kingdom on earth for a thousand years). For example, look at Rev. 12:12:
“Therefore, rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has only a short time.”
The devil doesn’t have omniscient knowledge, but as he approaches his end, God will have given him awareness that his time is about up. And, consequently, he gets more vile and mean against humanity.
Now, please think back through my whole statement above — the craziness exemplified on the highways; mass murder in schools; ethnic-war conflicts, — etc., and note the parallelism between what is happening today and what the Bible predicted about endtimes. The circumstances are clear. The Scriptures are clear. When these facts are placed alongside each other, the answers to mankind’s problems couldn’t be clearer to anyone who really wants to know the reasons and answers to the problems which are so blatantly manifest.
There’s only one solution to statements like “I don’t like your face!”, “I don’t like your race!”, “Get out of my space!”, ... and that is to see and receive God’s magnificent “grace”, which is the gift of eternal life. The Lord Jesus Christ gave His life and shed His blood to remove the whole sin problem. For those who have already received this gift, praise God! For those who haven’t, you can do it right now. You don’t have to be bound up in your sins and you can reduce the temptations of the devil who causes you to think about and do evil things. “How do I do this?”, you may ask. Believe. That’s it. I’m not kidding. And the other Christians reading this already know that this is all there is to the beginning of salvation.
“Believe what?”, you ask. Here it is in a nutshell: God has already done all He’s going to do to save you. The heavenly Father gave His only begotten Son for you. He accepted His Son’s work at Calvary. What was this work? Jesus voluntarily laid His life on God’s altar. He did it in the Garden of Gethsemane the night before His death, and the following day on the cross. He willingly sacrificed His life and His perfect blood was emptied in your behalf. You deserved to die on the cross, because of your inherited sin-nature and because you are a sinner. But Jesus took the rap for you. He paid the price for your sin-nature and for your sinfulness. Why did Jesus do this? Because He loves you. It’s that simple. God the Father accepted Jesus’ ransom payment. Do you? If you do, if you really do, then my friend, welcome to the Kingdom of God. You are now a Christian. You are saved. You will go to heaven when you die. There’s nothing better than this. You will never face a more important decision in your lifetime. God bless and keep you as you seek to serve and follow Him.
Love, in Christ,
Lance Johnson, O.D.