None of the Wicked Shall Understand

Toward the end of the book of Daniel there is some prophecy that has an air of finality about it. God exercised His judgment in intermediate stages at times, as was the case with Judah being taken into Babylonian captivity. Daniel was a victim of that. There would be other times when God would do His will in judging the nations and His people. Indeed, the temple known as Zerubbabel’s, built after the return from this captivity would be destroyed by the Romans in AD 70.

     We have to be cautious when looking at instances of evil and error having its comeuppance in history. Unless we have a specific Biblical passage that references a historical event we ought to withhold attribution of such an event. We cannot be sure for a number of reasons, chief among which is that we do not always see with a long enough perspective. We don’t know what’s around every corner. Sin often crumbles a culture from within.

     But we do know some things. We know God is in control of His creation (Isaiah 46:9-10, Proverbs 19:21). We know He provides for us (Matthew 6:33-34). We know that the truth makes us free (John 8:32). We know that faith, hope and love will always remain in force (1 Corinthians 13:13). And we know that by faith there is victory (1 John 5:4).

     We also know that in the meantime, in this life, we face challenges some of which subject our lives and souls to great peril. This does not surprise us (2 Timothy 3:12). But it is sometimes quite a struggle to figure out why some people think, speak and act the way they do.

     How many times have you been in a big store and heard a supposed adult speak with hatred and harshness to a small and young child. I believe in discipline and see plenty of times when it is not exercised when it should be, lovingly. But I have never seen a situation that justifies cursing and belittling a kid so young as to be incapable of assimilating what is being shouted at her or him.

     Then we read online or hear on the news about another senseless act of barbarism. It may be the murder of people in a drive-by shooting (it is a shame that we live in a time when we all know what that is) or an act of war that kills the innocent instead of the enemy. Common criminality is explained away as the result of income inequality. This is the world we have, a world where life principles have melted into a sticky mess of individualism and subjectivism.

     None of this world’s evil and foolishness makes any sense. For example, it makes no sense to say that you are helping a segment of the population by offering to kill their children. Abortion is heartless, yes. It is also senseless. Yet to attempt to have a civil discussion on abortion will bring about irrational shouts about women’s rights. Women have the same God-given rights everybody does, including the unborn.

     So, I am saying that the world is nuts, crazy, dumb as a stump. It is. But this should not surprise us. Go back to Daniel 12 and consider verse 10: “Many shall be purified, made white, and refined. But the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand.” It comes down to understanding, after all.

    But many evil doers are smart folks. They devise great complicated schemes of evil and error. They write big books full of wrong thinking and those books are praised as manifestations of genius. So, what’s wrong?

     As we see from Daniel, it is a matter of what one understands. The wicked refuse to understand God’s Will. This is what makes them wicked and irrational (Psalm 14:1). One day everyone will see the truth (Philippians 2:10-11). For some it will be too late. As for us, let’s continue to be wise and cling to God’s Word.