For book club this month we are reading The Robe by Lloyd C. Douglas (published 1942). This author writes beautifully with humor and with insight.
“People were very much alike, wherever you found them. The Jews hated their government. So did the Greeks. But a change of government wouldn’t help. That wasn’t the trouble. The trouble was that the people couldn’t change each other or themselves. The rug merchant discredited the spice merchant. Popygos would rob his grandmother. But that wasn’t Tiberius Ceasar’s fault. Tiberius was a bad Emperor, no doubt; but under any other government the grandmother of Popygos would be no more safe than she was now. The lonely man from the country (i.e. Jesus) probably knew that. He didn’t want to be a king. No matter who was king, you’d better keep your hand on your wallet. The world was in serious need of something – but it wasn’t something that a new king could furnish.”
Douglas cuts through to the heart of the matter and what is the matter is our hearts. As one example, when I consider the issue of abortion, I believe that the heart of the issue is much deeper than the law. As a nation we no longer value human life over our own selfish desires, nor do we consider obedience to God of more importance than our individual right to do what we want to do. Even if Roe v. Wade was overturned, abortions would not stop. In the midst of the battle, we must carry the truth to people’s hearts and pray for God to change their hearts.
Do police forces and prisons eliminate crime? Do laws and locks stop thieves? What keeps a person from lying to get his own way? Nothing that man invents will stop man from being man. And that is why Jesus died. Because we couldn’t fix us. But He can.
How does this affect me? Alone I may not be able to change the law to end legalized abortion. But with God’s help I can teach girls to value life, to desire to obey God, and to trust Him. And if God uses me to change one heart, I will rejoice in that.