Confusion: A Judgement on Society

By Maurice Roberts - Posted at Banner of Truth:

It would appear that one of the many ways in which God punishes the sins of men and nations is to give them over at times to widespread perplexity and confusion. Life in a perfect world would be ideally simple. We should all instinctively seek first the glory of God and he would unfailingly supply our every need. Supply would always providentially balance demand. Men would never know want. As they delighted themselves in God as their highest and only good, so he would manage their private and social affairs for them, anticipating their requirements and tailoring all circumstances to their comfort, convenience and capacities. As a wise and kind parent foresees the needs of his children in their nursery and arranges everything for their safe and profitable enjoyment, so God would dispose all events (if we were still in our first paradise) so that nothing would terrify or confuse us. That the world we live in is not so now, is a reflection, not on the power, wisdom or goodness of God, but on our deeply sinful state.

Sin made all things complicated upon earth. Every human enterprise is now beset with labour, sweat and tears. We are not to be surprised by that. Our Maker foretold us that it would be so when he informed Adam that from the first hour of man’s Fall all his labour would henceforth be with ‘the sweat of his face’ (Gen. 3:19). The testimony of history is that God’s words have most assuredly come to pass. Look where we may on earth ‘all things are full of labour; man cannot utter it’ (Eccles. 1:8). There is a crook in every lot, a twist in every path, a thorn under every rose. Foolish man calls it the cursed spite of Fate. The Apostle calls it by the name of Vanity, that frustration appointed by God for the whole world in its present state under the discipline of God’s judgement upon sin (Rom. 8:20).

But God’s judgements intensify when sinners grow worse. Men are perversely blind when they refuse to pause in the course of their frenzied lives to observe the perfection of God’s judgements in this world. The judgements of providence are not as complete as they are going to be on the Last Day. But they are not entirely mysterious or inscrutable either. They are proportioned, more or less, to the conduct of men in this life. The more sinful society becomes, the heavier God’s judgements become. This at any rate is the general tendency of God’s dealing with us in society. The many exceptions to the rule are to remind us all that an ultimate judgement on men’s sins awaits them at another time and in another place.

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