When we look at creation we are faced with a dilemma. It is beautiful, awesome and amazing. Then we see cruelty in the animal kingdom, disease and decay. Somehow something has perverted it. We look at Humankind and see brilliant minds, creative geniuses, adventurers and people with talents to heal, teach and care. But at the same time there are terrorists, predators, criminals and so much suffering. How has this perversion happened?
The World Book dictionary describes the word ‘pervert’ as ‘to lead or turn away from the right way or from the truth.’ It also adds ‘to change from what is natural or normal’ especially in regard to sexual behaviour.
Philosophy and religion seek to explain it and present innumerable explanations. The best insight, however, is found within the pages of the Judeo-Christian Bible. People may reject its account in Genesis or explain it away as poetical or mythological but they have no better explanation. Sure some parts raise questions which are not answered in this blog. Still what is stated in plain language makes sense.
Genesis chapters one and two tell us the World was created good. Chapter three introduces the Perverter! He is termed the ‘Serpent.’ Most people imagine this person as a snake. The term comes from the word ‘shining ’ and describes Seraphims in Isaiah 6:2.(the perverter is able to appear as an angel of light – 2 Corinthians 11:14 – and could well have impersonated a serpent to achieve his perversion of Humanity. The curse on the snake reveals complicity and a warning. Study the Scriptures and see this ‘shining one’ to be an angelic being who rebelled against God and turned away (perverted himself) from God’s truth and holiness. Revelation 12:9 gives the final unmasking of this creature. He is defined as ‘the great dragon, the ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world.’ As you read the Bible you become aware of his insidious perverting of God’s word, creation and worship.
Genesis unfolds the Devil’s approach. He deceived Eve through making her doubt the honour of God. He did this by casting doubt upon God’s word. She in turn beguiled Adam into breaking the explicit prohibition he had received from Yahweh about eating of the fruit. This act of neglectful disobedience, urged on undoubtedly by the Perverter, turned both Adam and Eve away from God. Something took over their soul and their mind. It is called falling short of what the Lord had created them to be. It is a walking in the darkness of self-interest rather than the Light of God. They had been perverted!
The Devil is also the perverter of Godly worship. As the deceiver, the Devil has offered people myriads of ways to worship. They range from Idolatry to Atheism. Failing that he infiltrates and corrupts Communion, songs/psalms/hymns and makes the pulpit an ego centric opportunity to distract from the Gospel. The sad story of five of the seven churches in Revelation chapters two and three makes the reader aware of that. In Australia Christians are shuddering at the unfolding stories of perverts in clerical uniform who have abused young and old. Such behaviour is the imprimatur of Satan’s perversion in the heart towards the sanctity of another, of marriage and the principle of chastity before marriage.
Another aspect of the Devil’s perverted nature infecting the human soul is seen in people’s attitude to creation. While the Psalmist looked at the earth and the heaven’s and saw God’s handiwork (Ps 8) people choose to see ‘chance.’ Evolution is the mantra of science. The dictionary says mantra comes from Hinduism meaning ‘instrument of thought.’ That in turn comes from the root ‘man think.’ Strange how people can see the wonder of creation in the micro or the macro dimensions and give credit to ‘nothing’ for all creation’s complexity. Then there are those who worship creation (Pantheists) and at the same time sever it from the Creator. Some environmentalists are prone to a similar folly.
The Bible gives understanding on Creation, Morality, the human soul and Spiritual matters (and much, much more) and how they have been perverted. Can you understand why the Devil, the perverter doesn’t want people to read it or believe it. It unmasks him. It reveals his purposes. More to the point it declares his ultimate judgement. (Revelation 20.) He has the World under his pernicious and perverted spell and wants to keep it that way. However, God will not be defied. He set about overthrowing the perversion and the damnation inherent in what the deceiver has done. This is the message of Christmas and of the Passover (Easter). It also underpins His command to repent (turn back to God) and obey the Truth (His word).
© Ray Hawkins
(A fuller explanation of God’s reclaiming from the Pervert’s grip creation and humankind can be found in my short devotional books ‘Bethlehem’s Warrior Baby’ and Captured by Calvary.’ These are available in Christian bookshops or Amazon in paper back or Ebooks)