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To be a Child ? It depends whose!
I would rather be a child of God than a king of men!
The Australian, March 29, 2005
See SMR pp. 620-623 No. 11
Children tend to be simple-minded, that is, to see things and say things as they appear to be, not as they have been made, by contrivance, to appear to be. They are not only less uninhibited, but more open-minded.
To be open-minded is - if the words are to taken as written, not to be ready to believe any hair-brained nonsense like the various religious and secular magics which have taken the minds of millions in our century, in tow, like so many derelict vessels*1 - the Communisms and Evolutionisms, the pragmatisms and secularisms, the internationalisms of humanistic interventionism*2 with their callow concepts and their shallow actions.
Rather it is NOT to close your mind to what you see, hear and observe, as if this had to be tasted by your own private professional taster, in case it should contain something undesired, like truth or justice, understanding or spirituality, the knowledge of God or the testimony of reality. It is to be open to what is there, what acts and what manifests itself, not to what is verbally pushed into the air, like a missile sent from below, proceeding to devastate in due time, the knowledge of what it finds above, if it can.
If children tend to believe in God, it is because it is obvious that nothing is making people or things now, in categorical order, that man is not changing at all, that things are continuing on an appointed course, and that magic although fun, does not happen. What has what it takes has taken what it has to make what is made. Children tend to see the obvious, until their spiritual growth is twisted by the torque of the human tornadoes and tsunamis of obliterative obfuscation.
To be sure, this tender or at times youthful defect in the armour of illusion (it is a very fortified thing these days) is not invulnerable. Children are now being taught in blighting TV, and encapsulated equivalents, how to believe what is not there, and to ignore what is, how to be vilely violent and violently vile, in reductionist cartoons how to have contempt for persons and to be ready to disbelieve whatever society wants them to disbelieve, in case the truth should appear to the embarrassment of their elders, or when they themselves become older.
Children seem to a significant degree to be vanishing from the earth: either they are being underfed or over-stuffed, seems to be a rule of increasing application, the former with the physical needs and the latter with the spiritual illusions of vapidity, based on nothing and leading nowhere, which is the current substitute for faith in God, the God who has revealed Himself in ways MORE categorical, MORE testable than ANYTHING which contemporary science can show*3.
It changes. It does so constantly, ludicrously, former 'beliefs' being made not merely redundant but resible. By contrast, as to God, His words and ways do not. In science, they seek to find out what is happening now, but the Bible tells you what has been and is to be happening over testable millenia, and rarely has so much of its word been so rapidly and so sequentially fulfilled as in the 77 years that this author has had the inestimable pleasure and delight, to be alive. As to that, one has by this means had the privilege of being a child oneself, and so an active participant in the process, or the prior process, of the 1930s when children were rather different.
Then Christianity still had enormous sway as a moral criterion, an emblem of righteousness, a place of compassion, a testimony and citadel of truth; but the erosive and acidulous seepages from the sewers of humanity have plagued the race to the point that to believe anything ultimate to be true is almost the ultimate and unutterable crime.
Even when one was in age, around the twenties, it was possible to find an Education Department official in Victoria wanting to persuade one that really, you know, one could BELIEVE this and that to be true, but one could not SAY that it WAS true in the field of religion. To this, then as now, one opposes unalterable testimony to the contrary. If THAT were true of ultimate reality, then it would at once falsify itself, since it is proclaiming NOTHING true there!
The concept of the demonstrability of God, it is not an invention of one's own mind: it is written in Romans 1:17ff., that God's power and divine nature are obvious, and that man tries to suppress both of these considerations. It is true, and one has found it true in experience as in roving over the testimony of history, ever since in amazing measure.
The evasions and prevarications, the mouthings and poutings and gross indecencies of irrationalism, the shiftiness and shadiness of many has become too obvious as they revile God and call it religion, oppose Christ and call it Christianity. Their demons of denial have landed them in the outlandish regions of antilogies without number or cease. They talk science, and found theories on what is conspicuous by its absence. They read the Bible and find the 3 major laws of science mirror its teaching, and throw it away as unmentionable in science. They talk morals and discard any ground for them, they express outrage at nations, and yet toss away any truth by which to assess. In experience they seek peace, while they teach war as the means of progress.
Children have been increasingly subverted in schools, so that in many cases you do not get so very much of childhood, but rather mini-adults with I WANT and I WILL written all over their I MAY DIVORCE MY PARENTS faces, and I MAY SUE FOR THE WAY YOU BROUGHT ME UP countenances. This is not to wave good-bye to children, merely to announce the vast inroads of philosophic folly disguised as 'science', sociology, economics or psychology, which are being made into the souls of children, as if people were afraid of the truth even from the mouths of babes and sucklings, and so prepared them for the spiritual slaughter at an earlier age.
They have not succeeded, as yet, in banishing childhood, merely in staging a rather successful pandemic of pandemonium, and that word is not for nothing possessed of 'demon' in its middle: in the lives of the miseducated human units called children.
Small wonder so many are turning to private schools, though there is less of private TV which is sound in spirit and unpolluted by profitable substitutes for reality. However, the devil not to be outdone, loves to make the private schools vast money absorbing units which will toe the line to the unsublime, to make the shades of the prison house of false philosophy and anti-truth descend the faster. You must subscribe to this examination system and to this syllabus and in this you must teach in this and in that way, whatever the fey trance-like fiction imposed; and not only may you be de-registered if you refuse, but you will find your students having trouble when they do not mouth or espouse the party politics of the divinely disenchanted, the pretenders that preaching on a materialist basis is not gross defamatory propaganda and a disgrace to the art and principles of teaching.
In South Australia, this present Government has been taken to task for activities in this field, challenged to debate, exposed to dissection of their incredibly propagandising approach, essentialised in an infamous Circular to Principals of 1988; and they do not respond except with words that do not touch the issues. This is merely illustrative, although what is present in this Circular, the attack on Christianity by generalising about religion in such a way as to defame this particular one to the uttermost, ranks perhaps among the worst cases of its kind, most abhorrent to be found in all the democratic nations in the world for its sheer superficial effrontery of method, and stark shame in logic of procedure.
This ? It is education ? In whatever sense could this be asserted!
Hence the erosion which leads to predictable crime through instilled dis-wisdom and meaningless logic, continues and the walls of vigour and virtue tend to break down to the calls of profit and penchant, till males may 'marry' and females in a similar way, and drunks may be supported in a whim and wish of society, till it breaks open with the inability to support folly, and gets tough, as it undoubtedly will. Terrorism is merely one of the consequences of this sort of decline, for one of its stanchions, its bases for assault is this, that people should be more 'moral', even though its own bloodthirsty morals are among the most bestial in history.
Thus both the punishment brigade, linked of course to international aspirations of wealth and power for the repressive and suppressive and unequal regimes to which terrorists seem so often and so much allied, often significantly anti-feminine (as distinct fro anti-feminist) as well, and those to be 'punished', the wealthy nations, are descending increasingly by a common shute to the lower regions, that end, the destiny of which is so well known and so little spoken of, except in swearing.
Yet the child-like mind, whether still to be found in some children, or in many adults, does not cease to exist. Seeing what is there and not what is said to be there, when it is demonstrably absent, because of a villainy towards God and a dissolute disturbance within the human race, racing to its own destruction: this delectable quality has not ceased on this earth. Instead, it is merely being prepared for extinction if possible, and for form's sake, by some sort of 'moral'. Ludicrous ? (News 19). But of course, the crucifixion was awesomely false, and ludicrous, the Inquisition scarcely less so of its kind, while various religions of 'nothing' as the ultimate category are scarcely to be credited as extant at all, past the fabric of fairies and the dash of the exotic; but they are there.
Thus Communism, although dying from want of any type of verification, validation or rationality*4, is still using Western money in the case of China, Western expertise, industrial techniques, together with what can be winnowed from Western crops by less orthodox means; and it blusters to threaten the liberty of the democracy in Taiwan. Its thin disguise for wanton, and inhuman power is even given some whim of ostensible legitimacy by such bodies, devastatingly unmoored from objective and consistent morals, as the UN.
Where then is the place of Taiwan ? and Australia ? is it possible that the justly cartooned attitude within Government of kowtowing or is it leaning backwards, to Chinese aspirations of such a kind, should really exist here of all places! Possibility at times must take lessons from actuality!
Greg Sheridan, Foreign Editor in The Australian, which appears a very uneven newspaper, one however which at times contains some startlingly good material, as may be seen in some of his articles, draws attention to one of the cultural kings who work in the social midst. He does so in terms of questionnaires. Our current interest is not so much in this process, but in the application to Taiwan. Let us pursue a point which he made (March 29,2005).
A question evidently was put to participants in 'society', otherwise called 'people', and it was this.
"Australia should act in accordance with our security alliance with the US even if it means following them to war with China over the independence of Taiwan" - do you agree or disagree ?
Sheridan finds it not surprising that most agreed with this proposition. However, his point here is that the mode of question, rather than the substance of the theme, may determine the result. It depends on HOW you ask it, and in what WAY you get at your point, he opines.
Thus he suggests another formulation of a question on this topic. It would be along these lines.
Do you think China is justified in mounting a military invasion of Taiwan, even if it causes tens of thousands dead, in order to reunify it with mainland China ?
He concludes that the poll taken in terms of the first formulation is virtually meaningless.
In other words, people may be invaded by desired and socially or politically or culturally preferred ideas, so that if you tap them, they may nicely respond along the lines of their explicit or implicit instruction. ACT just to protect little Taiwan from our trading party China, and have war ? Oh no! AGREE with invasion by massive China in order to pile up corpses for aggrandisement and push ? Of course not.
Trade must not be disturbed: Giants ought not to wield unruly clubs. RIght. Next question.
How readily does self-interest, personal, national or both dictate: NOT to any involvement when a major power is involved, especially a trading partner making many rich, and much cheap. How readily does moral condemnation without teeth dictate: NO to any making of havoc and war by aggressiveness! Liberated opinion then acts ... differently.
But what of the TRUTH ? WHY should national self-interest be construed as meaning indifference to participation with bullying and godless immorality ? It is because religion is increasingly not supposed to make too much difference, and it is likewise because they suppress the truth and want to make the cultural take the teeth out of religion. This people are tending to desire more and more, even if Christianity for its part has only justice and mercy and the Author and manifestation of both, in Christ*5 to show.
Here it is not a question of vacuous mouthings and nothings with phrases for their only dignity, but of a Person who made His impact in history on time, according to the prophecies of many in Israel, and whose prophecies similarly are governing the world past all its pouts and doubts, its dilemmas and its fraudulent dynamisms, devilries and endued disasters. It is He who declared clearly, that here was God to be seen as He is, and here was His power and His wisdom on earth to unveil, and on earth to worship (cf. John 8:58, 17:1-3, 5:19-23, 14:1-10, 10:1-10,27-28, Mark 2, Matthew 11:27ff.).
It was He who challenged all and any to show otherwise, even when the parameters of the test were simply this: IS this man the incarnation of the everlasting Creator of all things, the God of the earth, the universe, of the spirit of man, with all power and the very source and meaning of truth! Has He fulfilled in detail every prediction concerning His coming as Saviour ?
That was the challenge, and it is one which could readily be answered in the negative for anyone lacking all the power and reality that is Godís alone. Neither intelligence nor motivation was lacking in His assailants, bent on petty power and self-preservation, whether individually or in their contorted fashion, nationally.
This challenge He met so profoundly in so many ways unavailable to mere man, that the only remedy for His righteousness and truth was His murder, for which, in keeping with His status as God, divine provision had been made, indeed the matter foretold in detail from a millennium before, and increasingly so by many prophets of the Old Covenant, down the centuries. On the third day accordingly, following the judicial murder, none could display His body, and to His disciples with unerring tenderness and thoughtfulness, He showed Himself both conqueror of death in the body itself, however marred and malevolently smashed it had been, and equipped with power beyond the limits of the body in which He suffered, thus turning bewildered men into pageants of fearlessness, and witnesses of truth in a blindfolded world, bent on its sightless seeing in muddled traditions and unempowered delusions.
For love this was its most eminent hour, to bear the worst and use it for the provision of pardon, long declared as to its means and meaning in Isaiah, Micah, the Psalms, Zechariah and others in the Covenant Collation called the Old Testament, and now enacted so that NONE could overturn the evidence, deny the witness or scourge to surrender those who personally viewed the reality: facts deriding words, and events overturning preoccupations with survival. This of course in the also foretold ironies of God, was precisely what the city of His murder, failed to achieve, but rather did it by such devices, secure its overthrow a generation later. Nor has this alone sought survival only to lose it in the preoccupation with a result unworthy of life, of its Lord and destitute of any truth.
The world never could stand the presence of God, and having done its utmost to rid itself of Christ, via Roman rep Pilate, and Jewish priests alike, it went on its way, despite the sudden ascription of deity to Him by the Roman Empire, and later the British one. From all this, they fall, they maul, they mock its reality as in the Inquisition when they seem to become confused as to who is crucifying whom, and many used form for their own advance. Yet for all that, many more showed in sincerity that testimony of truth, honour, stability and justice, of mercy and compassion which has adorned the world, helped the afflicted and given simultaneously, the World Positioning Program to all, so that none helped, need be helpless, but all might know the truth.
The world submits a little, or simpers a lot, but then in a little its urbanity meets its inhumanity, which falls stricken by Siberian camps, Nazi extermination sites and Cold War morals, for what ? Why to survive! For what ? To mock at life ? That assuredly mocks back as you see both in Proverbs 1 and in the newspapers.
This world then, in its heinous practices and often hideious systems, many the worse for virtual hypocrisy, it puts in propaganda teeth and pulls them out for show.
Does this not mean that national self-interest, including personal varieties of the plague, is to be taken as a determinant, and morals as an application for leisure, without being too serious about it, while one gets on with the business of being comfortable! For many, whether in personal or national dress, alas it appears to be just the case.
In fact, if comfort and prosperity were NOT made into gods, then war would less frequently erupt. It is like smoking: pleasant say some (though personally I NEVER could abide the thought of ruining my sense of smell for some sour tasting stuff), and comfortable. Hence they smoke in this or that way and hope for the list of syndromes available to the practice, to die away as medicine advances. But t hey still die when the time of retribution for abuse, comes. It has its day. Then you pay.
It is however not just the payment, it is the folly. To think in the least about Hitler invading Austria (let alone Poland), or China Taiwan, is like pondering whether the rob a bank or assault a passer-by if you are short of money. It is abhorrent whatever the case, and to say so is part of being human among a race of people who suffer and are real, in a world they did not and could not make and a life which t hey still could not make, and with which even to twiddle dulls their active brains in its complexity, while life laughs back at their folly and pride, dolling out Dollies without delight.
The child-like mind can see such things, and you can see that this aspect of the child-like (not the ignorance or the lack of experience, simply the naÔvetť of not believing what is convenient, comfortable and increasingly, like cancer, normal) is at cost to be lost.
In fact, Jesus Christ made the point that EXCEPT you BECOME AS LITTLE CHILDREN you cannot ENTER the kingdom of heaven. You cannot of course abide in the place, since there is no visa which will so much as allow you to get INTO the domain, unless you first become as a child. This is not a notification or a statement; it is a radical change far more total than any mere physical heart-surgery could be. It is beyond the pump, it is in the realm of the real, and transformation to abide in it, truthfully and actually. This changes what the heart pumps FOR, and WHY its powers are employed, and in what DIRECTION! and it does so totally.
Let us hear the words of unalterable opposition to the cultural conformism and the comfort-barriers with the religious riots and the truth-dismissal dynamics of modern society. They are to be found in Matthew 18:1-5.
that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying,
is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?'
called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, and said,
whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin,
When God is your Father, what are you ? I do not mean, the brotherhood of man as derived from a forgotten or renovated God, so that it means nothing but something called meandering humanity. When God IS YOUR FATHER, not the pope, not your pastor, not your church, not your society, not your nation, not your international body of empty moral mouthings based precisely on nothing, but God: you are then child of God (John 3 confirms this).
What then is a child ? It is one who depends entirely on and is supported totally by his or her parents, and who is in a household where their ways are chosen, whose very being has come from the parents and whose dependent the child is. When God is the Father, there are of course NO limits, social or other, and there is an ABSOLUTE dependency, and a full-hearted, t to say full-throated fealty, loyalty and willingness to learn ABSOLUTELY from Him.
This is as far from a dereliction of reason as it is possible to go, since God declares, Come, let us reason together, and exhibits an insistent appeal to the verifications of reality which nothing else does (since 'science', increasingly NOT properly so-called is currently pre-occupied, not to say in the case of many of its practitioners, besotted with magics as shown so often on this site), and a power which nothing else has.
Reason, righteousness, morals, origins and destinies, power and truth then all are as clear and cohesive as the books on your shelves, and their realities are mutually attesting (cf. News 19, A Spiritual Potpourri Chs. 12, 15).
As a child of God, you then know from whom, with whom, for whom you move, and why, for it is with Jesus Christ, the only self-verifying exhibit, for love: FIRST love of God, and then of others in His name and for His sake and with His truth.
Unless this is your position, forget it, the kingdom of heaven is not for you; you cannot effect an entry. You can linger in self-made detention centres, struggling to get in as long as you like, but you might just as well return to base. You CANNOT enter UNLESS you become as a child, with an open mind wiling to look at actual facts without being motivated by self-interest or self-display, acceptability or wealth, power, prestige, dignity or any of the other nonsenses with which the adult mind so loves to dress itself.
It means hard work, taking up your cross to follow Christ ? Of course, what are hands for, appendages of form! It means clear hearts, of course, for what is understanding for, to be some sort of mini-explosion centre where you ustter the desired or even the prescribed vocables, when asked.
It means consistent living, for what is life for, an inventive abuse, so that its magnificent design, far more intricate than anything man can invent, should be carried to its non-dead maximum! It means courage, for what is heart for, a pump, a philosophy, or LIFE!
It means knowing God and acting in concert with your Maker.
It means knowing your place and NOT acting like a mini-god, as if a child were a mini-adult, but accepting that God is your Father and consulting continually with Him, and with His words in the uniquely attested Bible (cf. SMR Chs. 1, 5, 8-10, TMR Ch. 5, Repent or Perish Ch. 7).
It is better than being a pulverised sub-philosophic grave-yard, the relic of the festering and irrational imaginations of man!
Try being a child of God. Oh it is irreversible; but then so is God and so is life. It is not in your making; it is in His. It is a matter of accepting what you are, whose and finding in His life in Christ, the criterion of living, and rejoicing that sin is not the real master, but only the real misery.
If Christ was willing to become a man in time and space, though this without ceasing to be God, then are you not willing to become as a child to God, yet without ceasing to be man or woman, human ? After all, it is only when you are a child of God that the design of humanity from the mind of God and the heart of His love, becomes unveiled once more, not of course as anything approaching perfection, but then again, as with designs, as manifestly from HIS hands! Operationally, it is the most magnificent thing in the world, not to be of it, but of the One who made it. It makes all the difference.
This, it is impossible for man, this child-likeness of truth with Him whose it is, as a child of His very love; but what is impossible to man, it is open to God. It is an open invitation, and while the places are all set already (Ephesians 1:4), that is because God is a good host. It is nothing less than a sincere and open invitation to man, to partake of what is open to God, and made so by the openings of the flesh of Christ in payment and satisfaction for the squalor of sin, and the breach of the death penalty which this justly entails, by overcoming death with magnificent purity of eternal life, His from the first (John 1:1, 17:1-3, 5:19ff., I John 1:1-4).
*1 See Aviary of Idolatry,
Wake Up World!... Chs. 4, 5, 6,
Spiritual Refreshings Chs. 13, 16,
SMR pp. 378-385.
*2 See for example, with the Indexes,
It Bubbles ... Chs. 1, 6, 11.
*3 See SMR Chs. 1, 3, 5, 8-9,
A Spiritual Potpourri Chs. 12, 15.
See also The gods of natualism have no go!
*4 See SMR pp. 925ff.,
Aviary of Idolatry,
Repent or Perish Ch. 7
See SMR Ch. 6, Christ, the Wisdom and the Power of God Ch. 8, What is the Chaff to the Wheat ? Ch. 3, Repent or Perish Ch. 2, and see Indexes.