Monday 30 January 2023

Spiritual corruption and the peck: Joining the side of evil is just the Beginning of the matter

I have seen some people reporting that the peck seemed to result in startling spiritual deterioration or corruption in some people. 

The further speculation was sometimes that this was due to some mysterious or hi-tech ingredient included in the peck.

I do not doubt that taking the peck was followed by marked spiritual deterioration and corruption in some people. 

But it is missing the point badly, and indeed falling-into exactly the gross materialism which is being imposed and encouraged by the global totalitarians, to attribute spiritual change to the physical actions of a physical agent that - by unknown mechanism - makes people unspiritual. 

Taking the peck willingly was a decision to join the side of evil in the spiritual war of this world

And in such a war, as we may see in he world today; the choice of sides has consequences. Joining the side of evil is just the beginning of the matter

One who has chosen to affiliate with evil will be led into more and greater evils - and this will continue without limit, for as so long as he desires to remain on that side. 

It follows naturally and inevitably that one who makes such an evil-affiliating decision as willingly to embrace the peck; will exhibit spiritual deterioration, which may be severe in some instances; and will tend to worsen with time*.

*Unless there is subsequent repentance; and, as Francis Berger writes: regret is not repentance


Adam said...

"Taking the peck willingly was a decision to join the side of evil in the spiritual war of this world."

I would go one step further - taking the peck willingly was a reflection or a consequence of having already siding with evil in the spiritual war.

Bruce Charlton said...

@Adam - Yes, that was probably the usual. But I was wanting to focus on this question of taking the peck marking the start of a rapid and significant spiritual deterioration, in some people.

Of course, everybody is somewhat different in their nature and circumstances. For instance, some will already have been so spiritually corrupted that the peck made no observable difference.

And taking the peck would not necessarily causes spiritual corruption. If someone took it through cowardice, but admitted this to themselves and repented, then that need not be spiritually harmful. Sadly, such 'confession' and repentance has apparently been much rarer than I would have hoped.

It is worth remembering that some (many) people have a weak nature (and we all have particular weaknesses) - and the pressures of The World are too great for many people to resist. That is spiritually OK so long as there is repentance.

(Christ came to save sinners, after all - we do not need to become perfect before being saved.)

But denying that one has sinned (because cowardice is a sin, and taking the side of evil is a sin) is a form of self-damnation.

I really don't understand why self-professed, apparently-serious Christians find it apparently impossible to acknowledge such sins - but instead they double-down on defending their wrong decisions; and I am afraid it bodes very ill for them, spiritually; since they have chosen, *and will remain on*, the wrong side.

Bruce Charlton said...

@H - "I guess in such a case you wouldn't suffer "spiritual deterioration"." - Indeed. That was why it was not made compulsory.

Adam said...

I would say that even self-professed "serious Christians" these days are mighty light on believing in the sin department. I live in a bible belt part of Italy and the locals find it astounding that I won't eat meat on Friday, as just a single example. But in general repentance is very light on the ground these days. Even people who go to confession are not apt to repent; they do the confessing part but then will go right out and commit the same sins the next week. But as long as they confess then they're fine, right? And the next week the same priest will give absolution for the same sins; we get the priests that we deserve.

Lining up to get the peck is small beans in their scheme of things. I bet that they haven't even considered that there might need to be some confession involved, let alone actual repentance.

Bruce Charlton said...

@Adam - "they do the confessing part but then will go right out and commit the same sins the next week"

Well, that is suboptimal of course; but then this mortal life is suboptimal - always and with no exceptions; which is why we need resurrection and Heaven.

The vital thing is repenting - and being prepared (and keen) to repent, when it comes up, whatever we didn't notice or have forgotten.

Imagine a really serious drug addict who has been enslaved to the drug and simply lacks the will to quit (and we cannot escape an evil environment when people keep offering him the drug). Can he be a Christian, can he be saved? Of course! Because he can know that the drug is evil and wish that he could stop, ask Jesus for forgiveness. He may sin and sin again, helpless to prevent himself; but so long as he really (in his heart) repents his corrupted nature and behaviour - that does not prevent him following Christ. Of course it doesn't.

We are all that addict - even the best of us: even the greatest Saints; who *always* insist that they are terrible sinners - because they recognize sins that ordinary people don't notice, or regard as trivial.

But there are countless sins, no sins are trivial, and any one sin can block salvation; because there is no place for sin in Heaven.

Yet so long as we are prepared to repent our sins, ultimately None of that Matters!