IS IT “NORMAL” FOR GOD’S LAW TO BE WRITTEN UPON OUR HEARTS?

What does normal look like? That depends upon our point of view.

When I read these posts by The Night Wind, Pastor Doug Wilson, and insanitybytes22, I found myself a bit intrigued (Intrigued | Definition of Intrigued by Merriam-Webster).

Each of these bloggers used a slightly different definition of the word “normal” to describe the ordinary American citizen. The Night Wind discusses that issue in The Night Wind: NORMALS, NEW NORMALS, AND THE SENSE OF DIRECTION (nightwind777.blogspot.com). Using the word “normal,” each author makes important points about our brokenness and how we should deal with our brokenness.

That was probably not a good use of the word “normal.” Normal is statistical term (Normal | Definition of Normal by Merriam-Webster). Defining “normal” tends to be extremely difficult, and it doesn’t solve the basic issue that concerns The Night Wind, Pastor Doug Wilson, and insanitybytes22, we are not practicing good, moral values. Consider the complaints these three bloggers have about the “normals” in their first posts.

The Night Wind

What I tend to suspect, after a couple of weeks’ reflection, is that empathy is a normal reaction to facing a problem. It’s the new normal of apathy, hypocrisy, virtue-signalling, and narcissism that isn’t a natural condition in the state of man. As psychologists of the Old School taught, the main characteristic of a neurotic is to evade facing an issue and instead doubling-down and reinforcing their aberrant attitudes and behaviors. Observing the sociopolitical American Left, that paradigm is obvious. Among the Right it’s present too; but heavily camouflaged by a state of deep denial that looks superficially like concern for our national future. 

The Night Wind: THE WORLD DOESN’T WANT TO BE SAVED (nightwind777.blogspot.com)

Essentially, The Night Wind believes “normal” is obeying what CS Lewis called the “moral law,” the law God has written upon our hearts. “Right” and “Left”? Well, those words are problematic too. What is the difference between a Nazi and a Communist? Not much.

Pastor Doug Wilson

A Glance Ahead at Part 2

The concluding argument coming up in this post is that the people advancing the false and spurious gospel of Critical Theory need to repent of their sin. When I get to that point I do not intend to hold back. But lest I be plausibly accused of peddling a false gospel of my own (i.e. a gospel conducive to “normals,” one based on traditional American values), let me glance ahead at Wednesday’s post and say that the grievous problem with normals is that they want a stable traditional house with no foundation, which is something that Jesus said they can’t have (Matt. 7: 24-29). They are greatly distressed that the current woke storm threatens to destroy their way of life. And that is exactly what it will do unless they likewise repent and turn to Christ. Everyone must turn to Christ or die.

Unregenerate normals love the fruit and hate the tree. Unregenerate wokesters hate the fruit and hate the tree. The latter, frankly, are being more consistent.

The Revolt of the Normals, Part 1 | Blog & Mablog (dougwils.com)

Pastor Wilson’s use of the term “normal” is a bit more ambiguous. I think what it amounts to is that most people want the social benefits of Christianity, but they really don’t want to give their hearts to God. The thrust of Pastor Wilson’s posts is that “unregenerate wokesters” have named themselves. He argues that that it is clear that they are Marxists, racists, and so forth. Hence, the “unregenerate normals” have no excuse if they don’t stand up and righteously and Biblically oppose them.

Insanitybytes22

Do you know what I used to call the normals of the churchian world? The Beautiful People. It was not a compliment, I hated them, and sometimes I still do. What marks the beautiful people? Apathetic, complacent, devoid of empathy, self absorbed.

The kind of people who seem to believe the unregenerate are going to roast forever in hell, and yet they can’t even be bothered to invite you to church. My fate is allegedly eternal damnation and now you’re just off to watch a ballgame??? Get in a fight over worship music? Complain about the thermostat in the sanctuary? Peeps, I am allegedly roasting over here and no one even seems to care! But hey, at least you guys look all clean and shiny……

abnormally normal? | See, there’s this thing called biology… (wordpress.com)

Insanitybytes22 use of the word normal is tinged with cynicism. In her estimation, “normal” churchian people don’t seem to be caring and kind. Oddly, she enthusiastically lauded The Night Wind’s post, and Pastor Wilson’s post annoyed her. I suppose in her estimation Pastor Wilson was more judgmental, but all three of them are unhappy with the “normals.”

What is the substance of The Night Wind’s, Pastor Doug Wilson’s, and insanitybytes22’s complaint? They may define “normal” somewhat differently, but all of them are concerned that people who claim to be Christians don’t behave like Christ, but who does? Only Jesus Christ ever succeeded living a perfect life, and He died on a cross. Even Socrates found it difficult to stick to his principles and ask young people questions their elders found awkward. In this fallen world, the “normal” condition of mankind is to be sinful, and we don’t like the people who shine a light upon our sins. Even those who have been born again, repented of their sins, and turned to Christ for salvation are only in the process of being sanctified. Even those God has called to be His own still struggle with sin. Even those God has called His own have to swallow their pride when someone points to their sins.

What is one of the finest examples of bravery in the Bible. Imagine being Nathan and telling King David that he had sinned by committing adultery and murder (2 Samuel 12:1-15 NASB – Nathan Rebukes David – Bible Gateway).

What does it means to live in a fallen world? We are here because God judged us. You. Me. Everyone. Repentance and turning to Jesus Christ — asking for forgiveness and putting our trust in our Savior — is our only way out. But we rebel — our pride rebels — against choosing the gift of salvation.

Because our schools do an awful job of teaching critical thinking, we often forget that most ideas are bad ideas. Therefore, we need to examine our ideas before we rush forward and implement them, and The Night Wind, Pastor Doug Wilson, and insanitybytes22 did think carefully about their ideas. Their first posts were interesting, and their second posts added clarity. So, consider these excerpts from their second posts.

The Night Wind

While our race has never been perfect, our acknowledgement of our Divine parentage and our relationship to God is the normal state of affairs. It’s noteworthy that, throughout the entire history of our civilization that the Pagan philosophers, Jewish priests, or Christian saints offered themselves as representatives of God, and invited all who were willing to come and learn how to serve God. It was corruption in these systems that led to bloodshed which was never in keeping with the spirit of their teachings. The Great Reset and ‘New Normal’ in contrast, relies upon degrading humanity in body, soul, and mind—by force if necessary—which fact alone proves it a false system.

The Night Wind: NORMALS, NEW NORMALS, AND THE SENSE OF DIRECTION (nightwind777.blogspot.com)

The Night Wind clearly is not trying to define a solution. He is trying to define the problem. The problem is that many of the people who lead us have convinced us that we don’t need to obey the moral law, the law God wrote upon each of our hearts. Hence, we already know a time tested solution. Do what these people do not want us to do, obey the moral law.

Romans 2:12-16 New American Standard Bible

12 For all who have sinned without the Law will also perish without the Law, and all who have sinned under the Law will be judged by the Law; 13 for it is not the hearers of the Law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the Law who will be justified. 14 For when Gentiles who do not have the Law instinctively perform the requirements of the Law, these, though not having the Law, are a law to themselves, 15 in that they show the work of the Law written in their hearts, their conscience testifying and their thoughts alternately accusing or else defending them, 16 on the day when, according to my gospel, God will judge the secrets of mankind through Christ Jesus.

Pastor Doug Wilson

We are not going to address the problem we have by “rewinding” and starting the movie over. If you back up to an earlier spot in the movie and try again, you are going to get the same movie.

This is why repentance is a necessity, and repentance is more than simple distaste for what is going on right now. Repentance sees where everything went of the rails, and cries out to God for forgiveness over that.

What do you do when the uncircumcised Philistines are in the gates? What do you do when you find yourself oppressed by unbelievers who are right near the top of their scaling ladders? What you do—and this is the only thing you can do—is cry out to the Lord.

The Revolt of the Normals, Part 2 | Blog & Mablog (dougwils.com)

Trying to model John the Baptist, I suppose, Pastor Wilson calls for repentance. Wilson differs from The Night Wind by specifically pointing to Christian values.

Insanitybytes22

Both Night Wind and Pastor Wilson have continued to embiggen the conversation that I touched on here in abornormally normal. I call this sort of thing, “solving the world’s problems” and it is probably best done in a pub over a pint of ale. It is unlikely you will solve any of the world’s problems, but hey, at least you’ll be in a pub having a pint with some friends, so it’s all good.

Laughing here, but it need not be a pub either, a coffee shop, a talking place, the point simply being, time spent in the company of friends, time spent in relationship hashing things out, really is how you solve all the world’s problems.

More Revolting Normals? | See, there’s this thing called biology… (wordpress.com)

Insanitybytes22 echos The Night Wind brief discussion of a solution (at the end of The Night Wind: THE WORLD DOESN’T WANT TO BE SAVED (nightwind777.blogspot.com)). It doesn’t sound like much, but it is important. We can talk to each other. We can listen to each other. We can help each other.

Before we can propose a solution, one that makes any sense, we must define the problem. However, if we continually focus on the problem, we won’t be of any practical use. Our world is a mess, and it is kind of depressing. So, it depresses us. Hence we need to do what the Apostle Paul suggested. We need to focus on the solution (ARE YOU FOCUSING ON THE PROBLEM OR THE SOLUTION? – Citizen Tom).

Philippians 4:8 New American Standard Bible

8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

C. S. Lewis put it this way.

If you read history you will find that the Christians who did most for the present world were precisely those who thought most of the next. It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this. — by C. S. Lewis

C. S. Lewis – If you read history you will find that the… (brainyquote.com)

We need to think ahead. We need to think of salvation and why it makes sense to trust our Creator. We need to contemplate the excellence of God and why He is worthy of our praise.

Jesus gave us The Great Commission (Matthew 28:16-20 NASB – The Great Commission – Bible Gateway). We can praise our Lord by spreading His Gospel. What we cannot do is change someone else’s heart (John 6:44-45 NASB – Bible Gateway), but we can do what He told us to do.

9 thoughts on “IS IT “NORMAL” FOR GOD’S LAW TO BE WRITTEN UPON OUR HEARTS?

Add yours

    1. @PARTNERING WITH EAGLES

      Short but interesting. As your post indicates, we tend to defone normal relative to ourselves and our own experience. Term does not have much value when used that way. As Scatterwisdom points out in a comment on my latest, a reblog, the terms wise and foolish probably have more value.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. “The norm” used to be the standard we used to judge ourselves and others, the standard we aspired to match. But statisticians redefined “normal” as a statistical average. As an extreme example, around 1970 the “normal” American family had two-and-a-half children and 1.7 cars. Of course any family with half a child and a fractional car would not be considered normal, but the average was a statistic. When dealing with people taught in our secular schools and using mainstream media as a guide, we have to accept the reality that “normal” to them means grossly abnormal to use, and vice versa. J.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. @Salvageable

      Since the word “normal” goes back to a time before we had statisticians running amuck with survey results among us (see https://www.etymonline.com/search?q=normal), I have to agree with your observation. Statisticians adopted the term “normal” to their own purposes. However, given the origin of the word, from the carpenter’s square, what they did must have made sense to them at the time (https://condor.depaul.edu/ntiourir/NormalOrigin.htm). Perhaps I am being a bit naiver, but I usually don’t conceive of mathematicians as being into word play.

      I think one of the objectives of a good education use to be stabilization of our language. That is, teachers would instruct children in the dictionary meaning of words and make sure they used words in the way as defined by the dictionary. Unfortunately, academia, the mass media, and politicians almost seem to make sport out of misappropriating words. The unfortunate result in this case is that many people conflate the two different dictionary meanings of the word “normal.”

      With respect to morality, the use of the word “normal” is actually quite ironic. The natural man’s standard is the statistical normal. Those who deify the majority want us to believe the statistical normal is the appropriate standard. What God defines as normal, His standard, however, is perfection and therefore unachievable.

      When we strive for God’s standard, our society prospers. Even though we cannot achieve perfection, we can do better than we do when we settle for being just as good as everyone else.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. You make some wonderful points, including my favorite, “”If you read history you will find that the Christians who did most for the present world were precisely those who thought most of the next. It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this. — by C. S. Lewis…””

    Liked by 2 people

    1. @michelemariepoetry.com

      Thanks.

      I have used that C. S. Lewis quote more than once over the years.

      One of the interesting things about the Bible is that it is a history book. God is quite capable of doing everything by Himself all at once. Instead, He worked slowly, over time, using many people to build upon the works of others. So, it is that men and women long departed to Heaven still guide people to Christ.

      Liked by 1 person

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