December 10, 2012
This is the ninth and final way we share in the sins of others. In John 2: 13-22 we have the cleansing of the temple event. The priests and elders were incensed that Jesus drove out the money changers and animal vendors from the outer court of the Gentiles. Picture the scene: a crowd of people loudly haggling and shouting, animal noises and smells and poop all over. Money changers charging vicious fees for exchanging Greek and Roman coins for Jewish coin because that’s all the temple officials would accept. This racket made prayer in the outer court of the Gentiles an impossibility, but also disturbed worship in the inner courts.
Why did the temple officials allow such disrespect in the house of God? Probably because they were getting a cut or fee from the commerce. Even today we can’t set up a business without paying the local government a fee. But these leaders were angry and defensive about the evil they permitted under the pretext that Jesus had no authority to do what He did. See how they changed the subject? It became no longer that they were permitting disrespect to God in His house, but rather, “Who do you think you are?!” Above all, they didn’t want their power challenged. Never mind that they had no fear of God and had turned the law into an opportunity to feather their nests.
Defending evil goes on all around us daily. It most notably appears to be the job description of many of those in the media and writing personal blogs related to the things of this world. The vast majority of television and radio “journalists” don’t practice true journalism but rather adopt the flawed ideologies of those they promote who, above all, advance the culture of death. We should rather call these “journalists”, “opinionists.” We can’t get a straightforward factual report from any of them.
Media personalities, though, aren’t the only ones who defend evil. Many scientists got on the bandwagon to promote man made global warming to advance a political agenda that will make the poor in the world much poorer. Never mind that a series of emails surfaced that showed their science was faulty and manufactured, and that they were covering up the fact that there is no proof of their claims. They are still shamelessly declaring something to be true which is not and defending each other and the bad science.
Then there are those in the medical profession that accept and promote an impossible condition called “brain death” as a reason to harvest organs from a live person . A person has to be alive to harvest organs like the heart. If a person’s heart is still beating his brain is still working. He is alive, but the organ transplant industry defends this practice and presents it as saving the life of another. They won’t admit that the heart they take is from a still living person because that would mean admitting to murder. To me, there is no difference in the outcome between organ harvesting and vivisection of a human being. In both cases the person ends up dead from having vital parts removed.
Other ways we can find ourselves defending the sins of others
- Participating or campaigning for abortion “rights”, assisted suicide, euthanasia, legalized prostitution, legalized controlled substances, free distribution of condoms and other birth control, etc.
- Parents arguing with teachers over just disciplining of a child. (My child is perfect syndrome.)
- Ostracizing and ridiculing others who have rightfully challenged abuse of authority in any organization including Catholic parishes that engage in liturgical abuse and disrespectful behavior in front of the tabernacle.
- Taking the side of abusive parents at Little League games or other events.
- Writing papers or theses or letters to the editor that support any kind of moral degradation from drug abuse to sex crimes to just about anything you can imagine against the Ten Commandments.
- Actively supporting and campaigning for any governments or political entities attacking the natural law and natural rights of citizens.
- Commenting positively on blogs that promote immoral activities or ideas that degrade the human person.
- Ridiculing pastors when they present authentic Church teaching that the general public considers politically incorrect, or when they attempt to correct problem behavior in the congregation.
- Defending and making excuses for friends or family members who are engaging in any kind of immoral activity.
If you can think of other examples, please leave them in the comment section.
Probably the temple leaders didn’t think what they were doing was wrong (they had so deadened their consciences through many misdeeds), but when Jesus reacted violently and righteously to the abuses they refused to see the light. Instead, they turned on Jesus and verbally attacked Him for disturbing the status quo.
Jesus had every right to drive out the money changers and vendors. We, on the other hand, in zeal to do good but remembering that we too are sinners, must be cautious in handling what may or may not be genuine righteous indignation. Prudence, yet with willingness to stand up for what is right, must govern our actions.
As Christians we must be careful to associate ourselves only with people whose hearts are directed to what is good, true, and beautiful in the eyes of God. In our families, we must be vigilant to exercise charity towards others when they fail, but we must not defend evil behavior as good, especially repeated bad behavior. That would be the height of uncharitableness because somebody’s eternal soul is at stake, including our own. And that’s the bottom line in all of this, isn’t it?
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7 Comments to Sharing in the Sins of Others: By Defending the Ill Done
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