The Blurring of Wrong

By now most of us have seen the film footage of an organized mob storming a Nordstrom’s around closing time and making off with merchandise worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. An estimated 80 thieves hit the store fast, blocking off a city block, grabbed whatever they could get, and fled.

Now it’s happened in other cities as well, causing shoppers to think twice before heading to a place of business. Add to that neighborhood thefts of Amazon packages delivered to front porches. Packages, mind you, that the thief has no idea what is inside!

There has always been crime, and waves of crime, but it seems that we now have a new classification of crime. That is, unlawful acts that some folk don’t consider unlawful. Perhaps we could call it “entitled crime”! Some blame it on the pandemic. Others say it’s a ripple effect of our culture’s addiction to drugs. In other words, there are a lot of excuses for why it occurs. The Bible calls it what it is…Sin! Sin is an assorted deck of offenses and neglects. If it isn’t pleasing to God it’s probably sin. If it causes a sigh to sound in the heavens it’s probably sin. If I knowingly do something that I know is not right…it’s probably sin.

In our time, however, what is considered wrong has been blurred. It’s like my annual eye exam where my optometrist places a device in front of my eyes and asks me to say what I see. He intentionally makes my vision unclear to begin with. I can only guess as to what the right answers are. That’s how it is with our current view of right and wrong. It’s blurry and subject to a person’s opinion.

However, scripture makes something crystal clear. “As it is written, there is no one righteous, not even one…All of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:10 and 23)

If, in this unsettling time, our culture does not accept that we’re all fallen creatures, then our starting point of what is wrong has no anchor. It’s subject to how a person feels in the moment, to circumstances, and even to individual interpretation.

We shake our heads when we see a band of hooded thieves stealing sledgehammers and power tools from Home Depot, but we’ve inched our society toward that action in the blurring of what once was clearly wrong.

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