In a report by KPRC reporter Joel Eisenbaum of Houston, he reports how a local Houston man was a victim of a so-called knockout game. The game involves punching an unsuspecting victim when they are not expecting it and incapacitating them. The story reports that three alleged teens beat up a particular Houston man for no reason at all. Reporter Eisenbaum refers to such a crime as puzzling.
After our first article on the origin of rebellion, we can discern the root cause of senseless criminal activity such as this. Simply put, the origin of this criminal activity has a basis in the sinful human nature that we all have. Yet, although we all have such tendencies as hatred, gossip, maligning, jealousy, anger, revenge and even self-righteousness, we make choices to give in to these mental emotional attitudes or not. What is the alternative to such sinful mental attitude thinking? For the born-again believer in Jesus Christ we find the answer in Galatians 5:22:
The words ‘meekness’ and ‘temperance’ have a reference to humility and self-control, the contrast to arrogance and no self-control. Notice that the fruits of the Spirit are all mental attitudes. The fruits of the Spirit are not an overt action such as serving in the local Church, witnessing, financial giving or even praying. Carnal believers and even certain cults can also claim to do such actions and not even be a born-again believer in Jesus Christ. Not that these responsibilities are not legitimate, but these actions must have a motivation from right mental attitudes. These responsibilities are often taken as spiritual growth, when in reality they are the result of spiritual growth, never the cause for it. Remember that any correct action must always begin with correct thinking, which in turn carries over into correct motivations before they ultimately express themselves in correct actions.
Thus, these fruits of the Spirit or mental attitudes do not mystically happen in a believer like some ministries may teach. The two-fold ministry of God the Holy Spirit for believers is to provide the spiritual I.Q. for learning what the Bible teaches. Yet, without learning what the Bible teaches, there is nothing for the spiritual I.Q. to learn and apply. To produce the fruits of the Spirit a believer must first be under the power of the Holy Spirit so he may then be ready for the second part, learn and apply the principles of the Word of God. The power of the Holy Spirit and the power of the Word of God interconnect with each other to make the greatest power system available to all believers. God’s power system is incomplete without one or the other.
In the immature believer God the Holy Spirit has little inventory of biblical truth to use as raw material for producing the fruits of the Spirit. In contrast, in the mature believer the Spirit has the inventory of God’s Word to produce the same virtuous attitudes that our Lord exhibited here on earth. Either way, the exercise of the free will of every born-again believer to decide for one or the other is always in effect. We can choose to mature in the Lord or stay immature and ineffective throughout our entire time here in this life.
God never pressures our freedom to choose. He has designed us and knows the best for each of us who have his name. The Lord has documented clear principles and policies for us to live by every moment of our life here on this earth. Unfortunately, when we neglect to learn and apply his power system, we miss out on the prosperity and happiness that he has designed for each of us. We can accept the authority of God’s perfect system and put is to use in our lives or we can neglect it and live by Satan’s false and imperfect world system. It is unfortunate that many believers, by refusing to learn God’s system actually refuse to benefit from the plan of God.
The refusal to learn God’s system of virtue is a result of believers building a false system of values and wrong priorities. In addition, for any believer to develop true character strength and the happiness that comes with it, there must always be a foundation of humility. It is in humility that we can have the true freedom that so many are fervently searching for today. It is only in humility that we are teachable (Ps. 25:8-9).
Once again, the word ‘meek’ in verse 9 has a reference to humility. It is this humility that is the key human virtue that a person needs to be teachable. By no means is humility the same as humiliation. Humility is the mental virtue that is free from any kind of arrogance. Humiliation, on the other hand, would include reducing your view of yourself to a low status, not only in the eyes of yourself, but in the eyes of others.
The authority of parents is a design of God to instill humility in their children. As the first authority in the life of a child, parents have the responsibility to train, shape, and inculcate principle in them. The duty of every parent is to teach their child the principles of self-control, self-discipline, poise, and restraint by the positive use of their free will. The positive use of their free will is the means of reaching a genuine humility in life. In this way parental authority over their children manufactures an honorable child. Such honorable children will learn to exhibit good manners, sensitivity, and thoughtfulness of others. In addition, they will also understand to respect the privacy, property and rights of other individuals. It is at this point that a child comes to have true capacity for freedom, life, love, and happiness. The sooner this genuine humility develops in a child, the sooner that child will have a proper orientation to life.
It is unfortunate that many passive parents are not training and inculcating their child and bringing them in the virtue of humility. Proactive parents understand that a child needs teaching in vocabulary, language and how to think with words, sentences and paragraphs. Until a child learns how to think, that loving parent will have to use the rod of discipline on occasion. As our story on KPRC shows, sparing the rod of discipline is why so many children have such a dysfunctional start in their life. There is no suppression of the arrogant tendencies in such children. Instead, their arrogant tendencies gain strength through their promotion by Satan’s world system of arrogance (Prov. 13:24).
Such children never mature mentally and have an arrogant mind that cannot cope with life except when they are under a maximum form of prosperity. The reality is that life does not offer a perpetuation of prosperity. Unfortunately, such spoiled children go into adulthood to form a big part of our degenerate society. From such a group of immature individuals also comes the demand syndrome.
Yet, once a child leaves the home, they revert to their freedom to make choices. Their freedom to choose is the most powerful thing that they have in their lifetime. We must learn to make good choices on the basis of the facts. Bad decisions come when they have a basis on our emotions in relation to Satan’s world system of false norms and standards.
Honorable children develop with a sense of good manners, being thoughtful of others, having respect for the privacy, property and rights of others. Parents train honorable children to respect all systems of authority delegated under the laws of the divine establishments of volition, marriage, family and government. This is when they have a correct orientation to life as they accept all these things in a state of humility. Dishonorable children, reject such things in a state of arrogant thinking. Our story reflects dishonorable children in the tree teens who did not respect the freedom and rights of the Houston man that they beat up for no reason. It is unfortunate that law enforcement will now have to instill a humility in these teens that their passive parents should have done in their home.
Of course, it is never too late for a child that has gone into adulthood with these dysfunctions. The first step to breaking this vicious cycle is through regeneration, when they accept the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal savior. The second step is to develop spiritual maturity to gradually renovate their immature thinking with sound mature thinking. This maturation process is extremely difficult, especially for those who have never reached any level of maturity as human beings first. Yet, nothing is impossible for God’s system of virtue, provided a person exercise their free will to be positive to growing in Jesus Christ. Yet, the growing process first begins with their spiritual birth when they accept Jesus Christ as their Personal Savior (John 3:36)
In conclusion, in view of our article, the puzzling action of individuals that we hear in the news is not really very puzzling. The biblical view clears the puzzling mysteries of the human nature because it begins with the root cause, the human sinful nature.