So we have come full circle. The fruit of the “revolution” of the sixties has now come upon the United States. What was the legacy of the 1960’s? Maybe it is time to revisit.
The Sexual Revolution.
Progressively, immoral sexual activity was decriminalized in the period following World War Two, and the result has been devastating on the moral fiber of the American nation. Laws against adultery, homosexuality, and fornication were repealed state by state, with the resulting breakdown of the home, the explosion of abortion, one-parent, or no-parent children, pornography, and perversity.
We thought we were wiser than God. Today we see in the highest levels of government admission to acts and practices that are in themselves crimes against God and against humanity. Even the media has been embarrassed by the necessity of reporting acts that defile even the lips that speak them. “For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret” is the way Scripture speaks of them. (Ephesians 5:12) A generation ago, the admission to fornication, which is sexual acts outside of marriage, would in itself have been admission to crime, punishable by removal from office, fines, and imprisonment.
Sexual sin against marriage is not a “private act,” because it has societal implications that society must pay for. Homes are destroyed, welfare rolls increase, and children are impacted. If those commit it in high office, the threatened loss of high level secrets, vulnerability to blackmail, and loss of objective judgment and decision making impact the security of the United States. Humanistic governments and totalitarian regimes depend upon blackmail and guilt to keep officials in line and secure their obedience. A guilty man cannot act in good conscience for the best interest of the nation, for he will be tempted to use the power of government to divert attention away from his own shame, or, worse, to yield the interest of the state to avoid revelation of his conduct.
King David committed adultery with Bathsheba, with devastating effects on his family and on the kingdom of Israel. [See previous article] The result was civil war and moral breakdown in his own family. A public servant has no “private life.” Those who think they can compartmentalize are living in a dream world and are unfit for public service, whether they be Democrat or Republican. But guilt shuts a lot of mouths.
Forgiveness has nothing to do with it. Children must be taught very early that moral lapses have consequences. God may forgive the sin, and heaven may still be gained, but the earthly consequences must be understood. The sixties did not repeal God’s moral laws, and the nation who repeals the criminal aspects of moral failure must pay the consequences in the fabric of society. We see those consequences everywhere.
Our fathers knew better. They knew that if sexuality was not curbed by monogamy and law, the fabric of society would be torn apart. If people are granted license to practice whatever sexual activity, upon whomever, whenever they please, then soon their sexual appetites become insatiable. There is no satisfaction for lust, but it demands more and more. Those addicted to sex become more and more reckless. Nothing else has value. All their thought is dominated by it. Even national security, loyalty to colleagues, business interests, family, party will be sacrificed to the pleasures of the moment. Even the laws will be corrupted in order to give license to lust. The fornicator lacks “understanding,” according to Proverbs 7:7. Not only does his fornication disqualify him for leadership, but also he is disqualified for his lack of judgment, for not having good sense.
Not only morality, but truth was also a casualty of the sixties. War had become “unthinkable.” [Was the destruction of Jerusalem in ad 70 “thinkable’?] All “authoritarian” religions must be opposed, and “tolerance” must reign. “Do not impose your religion on others.” “There are many paths to God.” “Explore other modes of reality.” The result was the demise of truth. Certainty in religion, and its application to morality, was neither possible nor desirable. Obscenity had its definition changed to intolerance. “Make love, not war.” Sexual activities of all kinds were beautiful and peaceful, dignity and morality became the butt of crude humor on such shows as “Laugh In” and, more recently, “Seinfeld.” The latter was a crude and vulgar show about nothing, for there is nothing that matters, not religion, morality, culture, or dignity. T. S. Eliot said that the world would end in a “whimper,” but he was wrong. Civilizations end in the pathetic, embarrassed giggle of hollow men, incapable of feeling outrage.
The use of language changed. It was no longer used to express truth, because there was no truth to express. American churches succumbed to temptation and sought truth in feeling and irrationality, abandoning the creeds and “dry” theologies. A candidate for office, or the success of a minister in the church, was judged by his ability to evoke emotion and feeling, not by his ability to speak the truth.
Such words are lying words. Clever people no longer use words to convey reality, but to manipulate. The words are “true” if they incite to a desired end, whether it is elective office or a church building program. “Dogma” is narrow-minded. Documents must be “living,” susceptible of being twisting and manipulated to the whim of the moment.
Unscrupulous salesmen have used this technique for years, but moral people eschewed it. To use a word that I know will convey an idea to your mind, different from the idea I reserve in my mind, is dishonest. Even though I have an “out,” and when pinned down can say that you misunderstood, I am still a liar, and honest people will know it. Guilty, lying people miss the point, though, because they have turned the truth into a lie and have become incapable of telling or appreciating the difference.
“All that hate me love death,” wisdom says in Prov. 8:36. Drunkenness and death are the concomitants of fornication and lies. “Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. --Romans 13:13 Drunkenness and drug use go hand in hand with fornication and lies. This is also a legacy of the sixties. Alternate realities are dream worlds, and the druggie and the drunkard are seeking to escape from what they see as the emptiness of their lives.
The ultimate end of emptiness is suicide and death. When nothing matters anymore, when we are reduced to hollow men without conviction and outrage, thinking becomes our enemy, and must be suppressed at all costs, even suicide if needful.
Man’s relationship with God is always personal, as Francis Schaeffer told us. We are never in a neutral position, but are either in fellowship with Him through Jesus Christ, partaking of His life and holiness, or we are a dry branches cut off, withered and dead, without hope and without God in the world.
“Be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess, but be filled with the Spirit,” Paul tells us again in Ephesians 5:18. The way of the Spirit is clearly defined by Paul in Galatians 3:2, 3. Access to the Spirit of God is never by man’s wisdom, his efforts, or his righteousness. Access is only by the “hearing of faith.” When men turn from faith and from the truth of God revealed in nature and in Scripture, there is only the darkness of sexual perversion, lying and hatred, and the irrational hell of substance abuse. It was so in the ancient world, and it is true still today.
“There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness.” (Proverbs 30:12) America had such a generation. They thought they had discovered hypocrisy for the first time in the behavior of their parents, their churches, and their government. They did not see their own, far more virulent hypocrisy, the hypocrisy of revolution and license. Their legacy is still with us, in our churches, our schools, our courts, and our government. It is time to repent. We must reject adultery and fornication because they are crimes against God. David knew this and wrote, “Against thee, thee only have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight” (Psalm 51:4)
“O generation, see ye the word of the Lord. Have I been a wilderness unto Israel? a land of darkness? wherefore say my people, We are lords; we will come no more unto thee?” --Jeremiah 2:31