The History of America has some remarkable stories of triumph, grit, determination, and courage. The early settlers here were constantly facing trying and oft times frightening circumstances to feed, clothe, and house themselves and their children.
As people came from various parts of the world to find freedom and new opportunity in this vast new land, the varying differences between them caused many to cling to that which was familiar in their native lands. The language barrier created problems in communicating with people from other countries.
The fight for space, land, jobs, and of course money created various clicks or gangs as we now know them and made those of each click feel safer and more powerful and secure. Fights over territory began to become commonplace between Irish, Jewish, Russian, and other immigrants. The desire to get more and control more became a driving force in the hearts and minds of many people.
Jeremiah 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and it is exceedingly perverse and corrupt and severely, mortally sick! Who can know it [perceive, understand, be acquainted with his own heart and mind]? (Quick Amplified Bible)
Rebellion in the Human Heart
What is it in the human heart that so drives us to be in control and to rebel against that which testifies within each of us of what is wrong? Greed and lust for things permeate our very beings and existence. It appears that this lust and greed for things is quite difficult for us to satisfy. It becomes an unquenchable fire. A fire raging out of control is a frightening occurrence and so it is with the human heart it appears nothing can satisfy its thirst and desire for power and influence.
It is much more comfortable for men or women to do that which is wrong when many others are involved. The early settlers fought violently at times. That display of brutality toward one another pictures all ages of man from Adams disobedience in the Garden of Eden.
We watch the news and see images from around the world of rebellious hearts banning together to reek havoc by killing others and destroying and burning down property. The more people seems to make it easier to attract even more participants in the very violent hysteria. Restlessness and rebellion always desire company. We learn this early on in life when we prod or coerce one of our friends to still with us from the store or even to drink or use drugs with us. In many instances, it never brings quite the same thrill or adrenaline rush when it is a party of one out doing that, which is wrong. The thought of a one man or one-woman protest is almost unheard of though they do occur on some rare occasion.
Proverb 7:11 She was loud and rebellious, her feet would not stay at home. (NKJV)
Rebellion always thrives best when it can lead many into its path. It is like the wood to a fire, the fire always cries out for more wood and more wood. Such is the way with rebellion it seeks more and more to enter into its path and then it still is never satisfied. Satan (the chief rebel) lured one third of the angels to follow him and I am sure he tried to lure them all.
Proverbs 6:18 “A heart that manufactures wicked thoughts and plans, feet that are swift in running to evil” (Quick Amplified Bible)
What does the word rebel actually mean? The Hebrews used three (3) different words for rebel and they were marah, marad, and sur. Yet for the purpose and context of this discourse, I am speaking of the Hebrew word marad. This word means to rebel or to be rebellious. Little children are born with this in their hearts. The fact that rebellion has no conscience meaning to them, does not make them any less experts in the art of rebelling against their parents and anyone else who will not allow them to have their on way.
Proverbs 22:15 “Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child” (NKJV) Psalm 58:3 The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies. (KJV)
These two verses are hard for all of us to digest when we are standing behind the glass in the hospital all starry eyed over our son or daughter that has just arrived into this world. These things may be true of the baby in the crib next to them, but of course it cannot be true of our own children, but guess what it is true of every child no matter the race, ethnicity, or what part of the world they live in.
From the very beginning, every human being born comes into the earth chained with his or her fellow rebels. In Romans Chapter 3, the Apostle Paul by divine inspiration of God the Holy Spirit tells us in no certain terms that all are wicked. We all are sinners. None of us seeks after God. We have all turned aside to our own way. None of us does well. We have poison under our lips. We curse and are full of bitterness. We are swift to shed blood. We have no fear of God at all.
Now if this does not clear away our notion that we are some sort of good people, but perhaps just a bit misguided, then I do not know what will. We are all rebels to the absolute core of our being, completely and totally born that way.
Just yesterday I sat and listened to the Comedian Dennis Miller rail on about O.J. Simpson and some other person (I forget the persons name) burning and rotting in hell as if he were not under the same condemnation as they are without Christ. How clever the enemy has been throughout the ages convincing men and woman that there are those worse than they are and they should be deserving of hell, but not the taxpaying, hardworking, law abiding citizen that is also without Christ.
They are very ignorant to the truth that the chains that bind the murderer or thief also bind them together with them. Sin is not like a diving competition with God. He does not judge man by what is more detestable. Although God does call some things abominable to Him, He also says that liars and whoremongers will inherit the same Lake of Fire. Our conception and birth chains all humanity together. The only one who has the key to the locks of our chains is the Lord Jesus Christ. He alone can free us.
Revelation 1:18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death. (KJV)
Deception of one's Heart Condition
The morning began quite peacefully for Daniel. He sat and watched the sunrise as he prepared his coffee before heading off to the office for what he supposed to be another typical or normal day. As he drove the busy streets of his city, his heart stirred up within him contemplating the direction his company had begun to take.
The weather changed abruptly. The sun ducked behind a large cloud and disappeared. Shortly afterwards heavy rainfall began to pound his brand new BMW. Daniel wondered if this was a foreshadowing of some sudden change of circumstances in his life. He wondered if the conditions he might face at the office would be different.
Daniel's boss (the owner of the company) was a godless man (an atheist) whose only concern was the bottom line. He put no limits on the means by which he would gain wealth. Ethics or morality might as well been some sort of foreign language. His ethics was getting all you can by any means necessary.
On many occasions, Daniel would hear his boss blaspheme the name of God with no regard or remorse whatsoever. The love of money and all that its gain brought to him was the driving passion of his life. Initially, the company started out very small and through very shrewd and even illegal methods, it tripled in size and revenue in just 10 short years.
Now Daniel was not a Christian, but he did believe in God and attended church on occasion. He always thought that if he lived a good life, and treated others, as he wanted others to treat him, he would be OK. He thought that this is what God required of him and every other person on earth. He surely did not see himself in the same category as his boss. Daniel felt his boss would end up in hell because of his lifestyle. Daniel did not see himself on that same road, but supposed that he had already done and was doing daily in his life what he needed to do to satisfy God and His requirements in this life.
Now Daniel was fully aware of all the unscrupulous and even illegal practices that his company was involved in, but he rationalized his acceptance and participation with the idea that everyone is doing it to some degree or another. He thought that as long as he worked hard and did the best he could on his own work that God would not see him in the same light as his greedy and unscrupulous boss. Daniel is another example of one chained with his fellow rebels and not even realizing it. There are billions of Daniels in this world today.
Sincerely in Christ,
Clifford D. Tate, Sr.
Author, Silent Assassins of the Soul (not yet published; coming soon)