Moral Inversions

by S. M. Hutchens

I never thought when I was younger that the great degeneration of the Last Days could happen so quickly—so much trust I unwittingly had in human institutions, including churches—or that the language the Scriptures use describing it would be so literally correct and unfigurative. Go to the major media outlets for news and entertainment, then consider this:

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, undisciplined, disdainful, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof. Turn away from such people. (2 Tim. 3:1–5)

I have heard complaints (that I do not believe) that we “no longer” have a moral baseline to govern our thoughts and behavior. This is prima facie false, for all have a knowledge of God and what he requires, whether or not they suppress it. Confusion springs from the refusal to acknowledge this, which the love of sin engenders. In these verses, if one will have them, is a portrait of that baseline, presented here in antithesis, so that:

In days that God sustains, men are lovers of others at their own expense, generous, modest, supremely careful in their use of God’s Name, obedient to parents, thankful, pure-minded, affectionate, keepers of their word, honest, self-controlled, gentle, helpers of those who do good, loyal, disciplined, humble, seekers of God rather than stimulation, whose worship is not empty religious show, but looks toward a God who is sovereign and active, whose will shall be done in both heaven and earth, and whose judgments on the affairs of men cannot be escaped.

S. M. Hutchens is a Touchstone senior editor.

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