Years ago, I spoke with a friend and his wife who had just lost a pretty substantial sum of money. Their retirement investment had soured and several thousand dollars of their nest egg had vaporized with a little hiccup of the market. At the same time, the malfeasance of the investment firm that had been handling their account was discovered, and it was apparent, some hundreds of dollars of their hard earned money had been embezzled. As I listened to their story, my mind was captivated by the thousands lost in the market while the hundreds of embezzled dollars seemed to me to pale in comparison. I was a little taken back when my friend explained, “We’re okay with the loss of our investment dollars; we understood and agreed to the risks when we invested.” “The real issue here is that people we had trusted have stolen from us—that is a bitter pill to swallow.” My friends were “victims” in the classical sense, suffering personal loss at the hand of someone who intended them harm.
One might ask, “Why would anyone choose to harm or defraud another?” The answer is simple, and biblical, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? (Jeremiah 17:9)” This is not to say that mankind is incapable of doing anything right, but still, the nature of man is inherently selfish, greedy and often bold in its effort to satisfy itself. Consequently, a nation, community, business, home, or even an individual is measured by its propensity to do good, or to do evil. While you and I vacillate on the spectrum somewhere between doing right and doing wrong, we unwittingly judge others according to how they measure up to to our own standards. Without some help, we are all hopelessly destined to end up in a downward spiral toward disarray and eventual destruction.
My point is very simple; we were created to be subject to the Almighty, to live our lives according to His principles and precepts. He alone is able to save us from ourselves. Questions? …There are about 1,700 pages of answers in the Bible!