Tuesday, April 20, 2010

We Can’t Police Ourselves

If anybody still doubts that humanity is not infected with a sin nature, all you have to do is look at the corporate, banking, and financial industry wrongdoing. I hate to tell you, but people in those industries are no different from you and me. If we were in the position to do what they did and potentially profit handsomely from it, would you and I be strong enough to resist the temptation?

Knowing the sinful human nature, government and industry groups have put together ways of monitoring and controlling behavior. In business you have groups that determine what is determined to be appropriate accounting (GAAP-Generally Accepted Accounting Principles), so that abuses do not occur. In the financial industry you have the SEC, who is supposed to regulate investment activities so that investors are protected from fraud and abuse. Sadly, these watchdogs have let us down, so we’ve had Enron, Goldman Sachs, Bernie Madoff, and the like.

To those who naively believe that everybody is born “good” and society makes them go bad, I say just look at little children at play. They aren’t killing each other, but they have to be taught to share, some of them bully others, and most appear to be selfish.

What are the results of the sinful inclinations of people and their inability to police themselves?

The medical field didn’t police itself, so now we have costly medical care because of high malpractice insurance premiums and the practice of defensive medicine. Business didn’t police itself, and so we have untold misery as people have lost their life savings, charities have gone under because their endowments became worthless, etc. The Church couldn’t police itself, so you have pedophile priests and unfit ministers causing grief and ruining lives.

My point in all this is that we need to be close to God. Obviously those pedophile priests and unfit ministers weren’t close to God, just going through the motions. Staying close to God by regular worship, daily prayer, and weekly Bible study will help you to resist temptations when they attack you. It’s obvious we can’t do it in our own strength. So if you are far from God and not doing so well, make some changes in your life.

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