A friend shared the article below, which explores the validity of the recent horror stories coming out of Iraq regarding the beheading of children and other atrocities. While it is clear ISIS is an enemy to Christians, the article urges it is important to be sure of our sources.
But, the article also reminded me of another more important, perspective-altering fact. C.S. Lewis urges us not to be so caught up in the “filthy atrocities” that we are “…beginning to wish that black was a little blacker. If we give that wish its head, later on we shall wish to see grey as black, and then to see white itself as black. Finally, we shall insist on seeing everything – God and our friends and ourselves included – as bad, and not be able to stop doing it: we shall be fixed forever in a universe of pure hatred.” I have certainly been guilty of this in my political and non-political thinking as well, and it is a practice of which one should be careful. If we go so far in our thinking that we derive some twisted pleasure from talking about the evil, that we get to the place of being happy when our political leaders fail us once again, then we have gone too far. “Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.” [I Corinthians 13:6] “Delighting in evil” leads to division and a neglect of our true aim–to reveal God’s kingdom to the earth and place everyone in a restored relationship with Him.
Don’t misunderstand me: there is true evil on the earth and we must fight it. “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” [I Peter 5:8] We must fight and defend against evil, but we must not allow ourselves to be preoccupied by the thought or fear of it. Screwtape urges his novitiate: “It is funny how mortals always picture us [demons] as putting things into their minds: in reality our best work is done by keeping things out.” [Screwtape Letters; C.S. Lewis]
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.” [Philippians 4:8]