Words to Ponder Amid Scandal, Strife, and Storm


Image from time.com

Image from time.com

The world has gone crazy. I’m sure that every generation has uttered that phrase at one time or another about the respective times they’ve lived through, but the chaotic times we are experiencing today have begun to reach Biblical proportions…and they don’t seem to be letting up anytime soon.

Almost every day now, newspaper headlines are rife with mentions of some bizarre weather event that hasn’t happened “in 100 years” going on in some area of the globe or a gross abuse of power perpetrated by the government leaders who are supposed to be safeguarding our liberty and inalienable rights. Nature is clearly rebelling and people are being punished. I know it’s not politically correct to say so, but it’s clear from history that nations have been put to the test as they have strayed from the commandments ordained by the Lord and driven God to the margins of society. Whether you believe my diatribe or not, it is up to all of us to be ready for whatever is coming our way. Maybe more importantly, it is up to all of us to realize how we got here so that we avoid the transgressions of the past and repent of our sins to transform our lives and the world along with it. After all, the Lord promised in Chronicles that “if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

Deadly tornadoes in Oklahoma, Philadelphia buildings collapsing and taking innocent lives – the list goes on and on. I think we can all agree that our nation needs to be healed…physically, spiritually, and temporally.

Some months ago, the following broadcast by ABC radio commentator Paul Harvey was resurrected from the dust bins of history and really struck a chord with many people. The speech was originally broadcast on April 3, 1965, but the the words hold just as much meaning today as they did nearly fifty years ago. For some, the words may be empty and shallow, but hopefully many may find the words to be powerful and moving. Below is the full text of the speech:

If I were the devil…I mean, if I were the prince of darkness, I would of course want to engulf the whole earth in darkness. I would have a third of its real estate and four-fifths of its population, but I would not be happy until I had seized the ripest apple on the tree, so I should set about however necessary to take over the United States.

I would begin with a campaign of whispers. With the wisdom of a serpent, I would whisper to you as I whispered to Eve: “Do as you please.” “Do as you please.” To the young, I would whisper, “The Bible is a myth.” I would convince them that man created God instead of the other way around. I would confide that what is bad is good, and what is good is “square.” In the ears of the young marrieds, I would whisper that work is debasing, that cocktail parties are good for you. I would caution them not to be extreme in religion, in patriotism, in moral conduct. And the old, I would teach to pray. I would teach them to say after me: “Our Father, which art in Washington”…

If I were the devil, I’d educate authors in how to make lurid literature exciting so that anything else would appear dull and uninteresting. I’d threaten TV with dirtier movies and vice versa. And then, if I were the devil, I’d get organized. I’d infiltrate unions and urge more loafing and less work because idle hands usually work for me. I’d peddle narcotics to whom I could. I’d sell alcohol to ladies and gentlemen of distinction. And I’d tranquilize the rest with pills.

If I were the devil, I would encourage schools to refine young intellects but neglect to discipline emotions…let those run wild. I would designate an atheist to front for me before the highest courts in the land, and I would get preachers to say, “she’s right.” With flattery and promises of power, I could get the courts to rule what I construe as against God and in favor of pornography, and thus, I would evict God from the courthouse, and then from the school house, and then from the houses of Congress, and then in His own churches I would substitute psychology for religion, and I would deify science because that way men would become smart enough to create super weapons but not wise enough to control them.

If I were Satan, I’d make the symbol of Easter an egg and the symbol of Christmas a bottle. If I were the devil, I would take from those who have and I would give to those who wanted, until I had killed the incentive of the ambitious. And then, my police state would force everybody back to work. Then, I could separate families, putting children in uniform, women in coal mines, and objectors in slave camps.

In other words, if I were Satan, I’d just keep on doing what he’s doing.

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