We live in a sinful world. No doubt. In fact, evil abounds. If you need proof, watch the news for 2 minutes. The recent tragedy of more than 200 Nigerian schoolgirls being kidnapped by terrorists is just one story that proves the pervasive and destructive nature of sin.
But I’ve noticed an old twist taken to a new level recently. While some sins remain mostly condemned by mainstream society – murder, theft, kidnapping, racism, rape – other sins have not only been made acceptable, some are even expected. In fact, some are even celebrated.
The most recent example involves Emily Letts, a 25-year-old abortion counselor who filmed her own abortion to provide women with a “positive abortion story.” In an essay written for Cosmopolitan magazine, Letts calls the abortion experience “birth-like.” In the video she declares she feels “in awe of the fact that I can make a baby; I can make a life.”
Maybe this statement is key to understanding how we humans can so easily rationalize sin. Letts thinks she created life. She has put herself in God’s place. She has made herself her own god. I actually feel sorry for Letts. She has bought into a delusion.
This problem certainly isn’t new. Paul wrote about this very thing in the first chapter of Romans. Although God’s existence, character, and ways are clearly revealed to us in creation and the Bible, we have exchanged His truth for “truth” of our own making. We worship created things instead of the Creator (Romans 1:20-25).
If we don’t want to change our sinful behavior, then let’s just glamorize it. Hold it up in our culture as something to emulate, a goal to attain. After all, the cool kids are doing it.
Emily Letts pinged our culture’s cool meter. So did Gwyneth Paltrow and her “conscious uncoupling” from hubby Chris Martin. On her lifestyle website, where Paltrow announced the “uncoupling,” not long ago, she said they would “always will be a family, and in many ways we are closer than we have ever been.” Really? So divorce is the secret to a healthy, happy marriage? Cool indeed.
I am not saying our lives should be perfect. That’s not possible this side of eternity. We will struggle with sin. Christians will fall to temptation. Sin will even mess up our lives when we’re trying to do everything we can to follow God.
I get that.
But what I don’t get is a world where sin is celebrated. Where there’s no longer any sorrow or conviction or grief or repentance when we fall short of the glory of God (James 4:4-10). Instead sin is a celebrity and God’s been removed from the stage.