Being “woke” has become a popular expression over the past few years. According to Wikipedia (because we millennials always gravitate to the first result option on a Google search), the expression is actually a political term of African-American origin that refers to a perceived awareness of issues concerning social and racial justice. In the past decade, it’s been appropriated to have a more general indication of a “healthy paranoia, especially about issues of racial and political justice”.
It’s a noble ideology in and of itself, at least in its origins. We’re all human, and we all started as dust, so yes, let’s look out for each other, let’s fight for each other, and let’s try to understand each other, even when our socioeconomic status changes the way we view the world and each other.
But when I say, “Wake up,” I’m talking about humanity becoming aware of the largest racial, social, economic, and political issue it will ever have to face. It’s an issue that affects every single one of us on a daily basis. It hinders the atheist, agnostic, humanist, Muslim, Hindu, Christian, non-conformist, male, female, non-binary, LGBTQ+, democrat, republican, and socialist, regardless of nationality (yep, Wikipedia again). In other words, if you’re a homo-sapien, you need to wake up to this very real, life-destroying issue.
And when I say “Wake up,” I’m also talking about us becoming aware of the actual solution to this devastating problem. I’m talking about the only answer that can produce a change in our thoughts, words, and actions. And to be completely up front with you, it’s not a popular answer, but that doesn’t make it any less true. Just because you may not be willing to give it a fair shot doesn’t mean it isn’t exactly what we (as in the entire world population) are missing.
So how to say it, apart from “Wake up!”
Would you agree that every problem has a root? Would you agree that every reaction is a result of some first action, and all of our hate for each other has to come from somewhere? For instance, do you remember the first time you were truly angry as a child? Your heart started racing, your face maybe got all red or your eyes swelled up with tears, and you possibly wanted to hit someone or something? It’s amazing to think about, but we didn’t have to learn that.
The emotion was simply there.
But what’s at the root of that emotion and why is it there?!? What’s the seed of our anger, or our selfishness, or our rebellious “I’m always right” attitude? Before I tell you, I want you to forget about everything you’ve ever heard about this word. I want you to forget about the way people have portrayed it or taught you about it in the past. I want you to be open to the idea that a word or idea doesn’t have to be boxed in to one specific train of thought or compartmentalized.
Wake up! The root is called sin and it’s present in all of us.
Sin is what makes us want things our way and only our way. It drives greed and dishonesty not only in business, but also in our every day interactions with people. It’s what makes belittling someone else’s belief easy, and being prideful in our own belief even easier. It’s rotting inside all of us, coiled up on our tongues waiting to strike. I don’t even think I’m doing any justice trying to explain it.
And let me stop you right there, sin isn’t a church word. It’s not some religious notion or idea. It is SO VERY PRESENT AND EVIDENT in our lives every day that trying to deny its existence is comparable to staring at the sun (for that split second before your eyes start burning), feeling its warmth, and then declaring it’s not real. Sin is buried so deep inside of our souls that it actually makes up our human nature.
It’s behind the gun of a murderer just as much as it’s behind the man or woman who gives to appease a guilty conscience. It doesn’t discriminate between race or gender, good people or bad people. It simply fills our heart and overflows out into the world screwing up our lives and the lives of those around us.
Wake up, sin is real, and it is killing all of us
If I stopped writing now, all I would have so far is a rant at best. I don’t put things on this blog to rant. In fact, I haven’t put anything on this blog in over two years because I’d rather err on the side of being quiet than expressing opinion after opinion and rant after rant. You all get enough of that every day when you scroll through Facebook and Twitter.
My sincere hope for all of you reading this today (even if it’s just one person) is that you seriously consider this next point. That just as prevalent and real sin is, so is the solution. For me, it can all be summed up in a singular Bible verse.
Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Wake up! The solution to sin is the gift of God, it’s Jesus Christ.
Notice the first part of the verse, “the wages of sin is death.” It’s an absolute fact that we all will die some day. Have you ever considered why death is part of the way the world works? You may be thinking along these lines…
Mufasa, we still miss you!
But on a more serious note, I believe death is a direct result of sin. The same way currency is owed for working, death is owed for sinning. You may call it opinion, but the veracity of the Bible backs it up (Historicity of the Bible).
It’s a sobering thought, however, that’s not the end of the verse! It goes on to say that the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Through? How? Why is Jesus able to give us eternal life? The shortest answer I can give is this:
Jesus Christ lived a sinless, perfect life
There is only one human being on the face of the entire planet in all of history that has not sinned, and He is the Son of God. We can’t help but sin; in fact, we have no way to stop ourselves from sinning (Rom. 3:23, 5:6) but Christ was faced with every temptation and shortcoming known to man, and never sinned (Heb. 4:15). This sinless life qualifies Jesus for the largest act of selflessness ever performed.
Jesus Christ voluntarily gave up his life for you, for me, for the sins of the entire world.
And He didn’t do it in some sort of bargaining way. He didn’t say up on that cross “Hey I’m dying for you so stop sinning!” In fact it says quite the opposite. The Bible says that God commended his love toward us in this way, “that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
He sent his perfect Son to die for us knowing how extremely screwed up we are! He sent Jesus Christ to be a sacrificial lamb for humanity even though we eat ourselves up like a starving pack of wolves! He sent Him despite the hate, animosity, treachery, and dishonesty we take part in every single day. He sent Jesus to die even knowing that most people would never “Wake Up” to the truth of how much God truly loves them.
When Jesus was crucified and died, he laid buried for three days. On the third day he rose from the grave, and conquered death. He proved to us that eternal life is real, and ascended up into heaven to be seated at the right hand of the Father.
Sin is real
Jesus Christ paid for your sins with His death
Believe in Him, receive forgiveness of sins, and receive the gift of God,
Eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Friends, if this message spoke to you, and you have never made a conscious choice to believe in Jesus Christ for who He really is, please pray this prayer (or something like it) and ask Jesus Christ to be your personal Lord and Savior. “Jesus, I am a sinner. Thank you for dying for me, and for paying for my sins. I need you to be my Savior. Amen.” By simply believing in Christ, you have eternal life. This prayer is just a way to express your belief in Him, and to solidify the choice you’ve made in your heart and mind.
If this message spoke to you, please reach out to me and let me know, my contact information is in the “About” page. Love you all.