I Have a Question - Part 1

Scripture: Isaiah 57:20-21, Luke 21:26, Proverbs 10:4
Bible questions are answered on this broadcast. One question is, "What do you think is the cause for so much emotional and mental trouble today?" Another question is, "What do you think about all the giveaway government projects to support those who won't work."
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Today we are going to answer some more questions that have come to our attention here at the Amazing Facts headquarters. Many of our listeners have been sending in serious Bible questions and we've also been meeting many of these same questions in holding evangelistic crusades and radio rallies. I am sure that they may be questions you have entertained in your own mind at some time or other. So today we will start another series of answering those questions as far as we can from God's word.

It's simply amazing how many times we can find a direct statement of the Bible to satisfy the doubts and queries that may arise in human hearts. If you'd like to send in one of your own personal Bible questions, we want to encourage you to do so. From time to time we will be inserting these question-and-answer broadcasts in the series of topics that are presented daily on our network of stations.

Here's our first question today: What do you think is the cause for so much emotional and mental trouble in the world today?

Friends, this is a question that is being raised by multitudes of people all over the world in this troubled age. There is no question but what emotional mental problems are on the tremendous upsurge in every part of the world. The psychiatrists offices are filled with people trying to get appointments, trying to understand their own frustrations and mixed-up feelings. Recently I read that young people and children are being treated for emotional difficulties on a scale never before known in this country. The special committee appointed by the mayor of New York City looked into the educational problems of the one million public school children of that great metropolis. They came back with the report that over half of the public school children in New York needed specialized attention because of emotional disorders. Christianity Today magazine some time ago reported that over 4,000 students of the University of Colorado sought psychiatric help during the year. This was roughly 1/3 of the entire student body. Now, friends, these facts bring into focus the tremendous problem which faces our modern world in trying to keep sane and balanced. The question is, What has happened to trigger these terrible emotional disorders?

First of all, I would say the awful upheaval in moral standards has precipitated the large part of it. All the demands for freedom and more rights on the part of young people has not been for the strength and stability of their moral character. In fact, there is no doubt but what a lot of deterioration and dissolution of character has taken place under the impact of the relativism and secular humanism so widely advocated today. When are we ever going to understand that unlimited freedom and license to break all moral restriction is going to bring only unhappiness to young men and women. Long, long ago the wisest man who ever lived found out by experimentation that there is no peace in the influence of fleshly pleasure. Solomon had more of the material things of this world than any of our modern-day millionaires, yet he finally conceded that the only thing worth while was to serve God and keep His commandments.

Our whole society is given over to a kind of orgiastic abandonment in which drugs, alcohol, demonic entertainments and illicit sex form the staple of many people's social diet. Others vicariously participate in such immorality by watching it portrayed daily on the television screen.

Instead of increasing their enjoyment by these activities, people are only heightening their despair by destroying their power to cope with the demands and tensions of life. Suicides, especially among the young, are on the rise. A general sense of the meaninglessness of this life pervades all ranks of society. A deep, sneering cynicism has settled in among the general populace, more and more of whom are joining in a kind of frenzied dance of death to celebrate the demise of civilization.

Having turned away from the light and guidance of God's word, mankind has lost all sense of purpose and direction. No new system of morality or psychological school of thought is able to fill the spiritual vacuum or stem the tide of moral pollution. Mindless revolt against all restraints and values has been the result.

A very interesting article appeared in the U.S. News and World Report news magazine during the miniskirt craze. In an interview with Malcom Muggridge of England who is very well known for his caustic observations about English life, he was asked whether the younger generation was in a state of revolt against the old values. His answer was, "Not in the least, I think it's sheer degeneracy. I don't think those kids are rebelling at anything, they are just degenerate. It's the antics of an exhausted stock."

Well, that's a new way of expressing it, friends, and the psychologists have steered far away from calling it this outright true title. It just might be, though, that we ought to designate this rebellion as sin and disobedience to God's commandments. A text of the Bible seems to fit in very beautifully right at this point in Isaiah 57:20, 21: "But the wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt. There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked." When we come right down to it, a violated conscience is one of the greatest causes of emotional fear and instability. One who has an assured sense of right-doing is seldom afflicted by the teen-age fears and insecurities which mark the 20th Century. Jesus had another way of describing it in Luke 21:26, He said, "Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken."

We've been reading a great deal about strange signs and sights in the skies, the unidentified flying objects of our age have caused many to be terrified of the unknown. Friends, you can be sure of one thing, we cannot predict what one day will bring forth. If a man has no faith or confidence in a higher power, he will likely be filled with terror at the prospects of tomorrow. The tensions and uncertainties of life without faith in God has created an unreasonable and unprecedented atmosphere of terrified expectancy. Add to that the speeding up of our way of living and you have an additional cause for fear.

According to a recent experiment, freeway drivers undergo more nervous strain than an astronaut in orbit. A man who had driven on a freeway for three years and seemed outwardly calm reached a heartbeat of 111 from his normal 79 as he entered heavy freeway traffic, applied the brakes or had another driver cut in front of him. Another driver's heartbeat reached 115. Astronauts Glen and Carpenter had heartbeats of from 80 to 90 and from 60 to 94 during most of their first flights. At the critical re-entry time, Glen's heart reached 134 but Carpenter's only 104, which was even less than the freeway drivers. This all seems to indicate that modern man needs to slow down considerably and take more time for his own thoughts and meditations. Certainly he needs to take more time for God and his spiritual interests. Through prayer and Bible study and calm reliance upon the strength of God, much of the emotional fear could be entirely eliminated. The need for psychiatry would drop to a marginal minimum. Crime would be tremendously reduced, divorce and home problems would be greatly reduced. Perhaps these things will answer your question in part at least.

The next question comes from a listener in the Baltimore area. "What do you think about all the giveaway government projects to support those who won't work?

Friends, let me make it clear that I am not a political speaker or commentator. I'm concerned only with the Bible and its message for our age. There are plenty of voices being raised in both condemnation and defense of what our government is doing with your tax money and mine.

The Bible does have a lot to say about the blessing and benefits of hard work. This is a definite part of good religion, and I make no apologies for recommending it. Any project which discourages initiative and makes laziness and unemployment more profitable than employment is nothing but a curse. The Proverbs offer an abundance of wisdom on this subject. A few examples to consider are: "He becometh poor that dealeth with a slack hand: but the hand of the diligent maketh rich." "The soul of the sluggard desireth and hath nothing: but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat. In all labor there is profit... ." "He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread... ." Proverbs 10:4; 13:4; 14:23; 12:11.

There is a legitimate place for society to assist those who because of illness, age, or debility cannot help themselves, but welfare programs that support able-bodied idlers who refuse to work are only aiding in the demoralization and breakdown of our society. We are admonished in the New Testament that "if any would not work, neither should he eat." 2 Thessalonians 3:10.

I personally feel that modern young people desperately need to learn the benefits of effort, self-reliance and hard work. Our founding fathers made little use of the word "security". Their conversations were sprinkled with such words as "courage," "conquest" and "determination". Come drought or flood they stuck it out or bailed out. They didn't appeal to some government agency. They rolled up their sleeves and went to work.

When God made the oyster, he gave it real security. He gave it a hard shell for protection and all it has to do when hungry is to open it. But when God made the eagle, He gave it great wings and told it to build its own nest. And the eagle did, on the highest mountains where the enemy would not molest eaglets. For food, it flies through rain, sleet and storm. I'm glad the eagle, and not the oyster, is the symbol of America.

The parable is told of a man who died and found himself in a region of fabulous abundance. His slightest wish was instantly granted by the many servants. At last he became bored, asked for some work to do, some problem to solve. His host informed him that he was living in a region where there were no problems and no work to do. "What!" he cried. "No problems? No work? I wish I'd gone to hell instead of coming here!" The host replied, "Where do you think you are?"

Thank God for work!

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