Friday, June 6, 2008

Incensed...But Expected

A friend forwarded this link to me today. I forewarn you that it's not pretty (though not too graphic):,2933,363493,00.html

A pedestrian was hit by a car in broad daylight in Hartford, CT...and no one came up to him to help him! Cars simply drove around him. One scooter circled him. Apparently a few people called 911 from a distance. Yet no one came to him. No one...loved him.

I am incensed. It is indecent, achingly ugly and self-absorbed. But one thing it is not is inhuman. This response is actually very human. It is exactly the kind of response our flesh provides: gawk, but do not risk self. Do not think of others first. Do not lay yourself aside.

But the reason we are indignant is significant. If it is natural for us to think of self first, why are we appalled that these people didn't? Even unbelievers are shocked. Why? Because the law of God is written onto our hearts, believer or not: ...When Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law, since they show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts... (Romans 2:14-16a) God's law reflects His nature. And God's nature is to love--laying aside self, caring first. That is part of what is written onto our hearts.

The parable of the Samaritan traveller comes to mind. An injured man, uncaring respondents. Who was this man's neighbor? An unlikely man--one whose theology was warped (the Samaritans practiced a syncretistic version of Judaism), and yet he let the law of God rule his heart.

I am sad to think that we will see more of this...much more. For our society is actively pushing out God's laws, rejecting intentionally what God has written into our very DNA. And without the regeneration of the Holy Spirit, a callous indifference is what we can expect to see in our society. And it will happen sooner than you think.

Our times grow dark, and more darkness awaits if we are where I believe us to be in relationship to God's prophecies of the end times (they are a-comin'!). So what hope is there? The hope of our society is the presence of Christ illuminated by the Holy Spirit in the life of each and every believer. If you know Christ, than selflessness should be flowing out of you. The natural law of God in our hearts enlightened by the presence of the Holy Spirit should be making you and me beacons in a place where dusk is quickly falling.

When I ask of myself if I am that beacon, I'm not totally satisfied with the answer. But it is my calling, and thus it is my goal: You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven. --Matthew 5:14-16

Seeking to shine so that others may praise my Father in heaven,

(c) 2008


Becoming Me said...

Recently someone told me that she was at a banquet for doctors and one of the doctors had a heart attack and none of the other 300+ doctors in the room did anything to help him. They were all afraid of being sued. How sad. So sad and so little faith.

Sarah@Life in the Parsonage said...

Wow! It's all I can say!

Beth said...

I often see things like that video and think...well, sure....that is the carnal nature we all possess. Why do we act so surprised at the depravity of man.

Good to have you back.

Anonymous said...

I had the same reaction initially which is why I forwarded (actually, I fwd'd for the two quotes I mentioned), but if you read the rest you get a better feel for why people didn't stop, the fact that peple had racted but no one thought they did (er the police chief) and help arrived in a little over a minute.

I'm not saying it's not a sign of the times and a sign of much, much worse to come on so many levels. I see sin all over this. But figures since I created the stir by forwarding, I should balance it.

t said...

Beth - I agree. Had someone teach me that a while back and it really stuck with me. It's similar to, why are we offended when people without Christ act like people without Christ. Hmmm. Though I'm greatly troubled by the Church acting like that but that's another blog, huh?

Bob said...

I agree with your assessment: people are becoming more, but just to put this in perspective, the New York City area has had that problem for a long time.

I remember a TV stunt back in the early sixties in which Candid Camera filmed a running faucet spewing water all over a Manhattan sidewalk. It ran for hours and thousands of people walked by (some even jumped over the stream of water to keepfrom getting the bottoms of their shoes wet), but no one ever reached down to turn the faucet off. And this was in the midst of a water shortage.

New Yorkers just don't get involved, but that's been true for decades. Which, when you think about it, makes it all the worse.