“Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” (Isaiah 5:20).
It would be difficult to find a time or generation when Isaiah’s warning seemed to more pointedly apply to our culture’s moral sensibilities. Long held and cherished values, many formed and informed by Scripture, now find themselves discarded and crashed upon the rocks of a society wherein pleasure has openly replaced piety as the governing purpose of human existence.
“Men shall be lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God” (II Timothy 3:4).
While we mourn for the calling of good as evil and evil as good, we also find opportunity presented to us by the inevitable “woe” that comes to all who “put darkness for light.” Many will experience grievous personal destruction for their willful error, themselves crashing upon the aforementioned rocks of ruin. Some will learn thereby, and be ready to listen to the truths of righteousness, judgment, grace and mercy our Lord would have us to proclaim. We must be ready and expectant for such opportunity, not allowing ourselves to be so disheartened by cultural demise that we are ill-prepared for the personal ministry thereby made possible.
Our Heavenly Father “delighteth in mercy” (Micah 7:18). While His wrath revealed against sin will ultimately consume those who never repent and believe, it softens the hard hearts of some to make a way for the grace of the Lord Jesus to enter therein. We serve as the lamps of such Light as it shines in the growing darkness. Many will look away. Some, however, will look with tear-stained eyes and broken hearts in our direction, or more literally, in the direction of “the bright and morning Star” we reflect (Revelation 22:16). Maintaining primary focus on this opportunity rather than on cultural demise will prepare us to fulfill our vital calling…
“Do all things without murmurings and disputings: that ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; holding forth the word of life.”