When cars continue to drive the wrong way down a One Way street causing serious injury and death, it is important to get out on that street and try to stop the cars going in the wrong direction at the present moment. It is also important, that when the eventual catastrophe occurs, to get out on that street and attend to the broken and bleeding victims, regardless of whether they were going in the wrong direction or in the right direction. Pain is pain, and as human beings and as Christians we must do whatever we can to alleviate it in a fellow human being who is suffering.
But does there not come a time when it is morally demanded to go beyond the tragedy of the day and figure out why so many people are driving in the wrong way down a One Way road, while simultaneously thinking they are going in the right direction?
We drive our vehicles from point A to point B by utilizing a system of symbols, e.g., “Stop” signs, “Do Not Enter” signs, “One Way” signs. If a person, under the influence of some kill-joy, lying and murderous spirit, were to alter the signs, making the “Stop” sign a “Go” sign, removing the “Do Not Enter” sign, reversing the “One Way” sign, catastrophe would ensure. And, while there would still be an imperative moral demand to attend the the immediate needs of the victims of this lethal fraud, there would equally be an imperative moral demand to get rid of the untruthful signs and replace them with signs that clearly communicate the truth; this is “One Way”, “Stop,” “Do not Enter”.
To engage in healing the immediate wounds of those deceived by untruthful symbolization is in utter conformity with the Gospel. To ignore the continuing untruthful symbolization, that ceaselessly and inevitably leads to such human carnage, is in flagrant disobedience to the Gospel. It is not Christic love for a Christian to ignore an untruth that is causing the continual destruction of people. Likewise, a lie does not morph into Christic truth or Christic love because a Christian is deceiving others out of love for God, country, Church, corporation or any subdivision of these. And above all, it is not Christic love to be indifferent to the victims in the street or to the mis-communicating symbols that led to their victimization.
Indeed, until the symbols communicate what they are suppose to communicate about this being a One Way road, pain and sorrow, wretchedness and death will be the required fare in life for traveling the down this road the wrong way.
May the God of love never allow the symbol-changers to know the suffering and horror they are responsible for pouring down upon their fellow human beings by their choice to transpose symbols and their meaning.
(To continue click on the Holy Communion_Unholy Communication.)