Straining out a Gnat and Swallowing a Camel



Straining out a Gnat

and Swallowing a Camel

I never cease to be amazed at the hypocrisy that we see in public life in America.  There is little balance or consistency in many areas of public policy.  This came to my mind this morning as I glanced at a newspaper notice of a man’s sentencing.  This is how the article began:

Fort Worth man, 58, is sentenced for fondling

A 58-year-old Fort Worth man pleaded guilty Monday to indecency with a child and must register as a sex offender for the rest of his life after fondling an 11-year-old.  Michael Toland was also told to perform 200 hours of community service; complete sex offender counseling; have no unsupervised contact with minors; not go to places where minors tend to congregate; and adhere to many other sex-offensive-related conditions that apply to all felony offenders, according to the Parker County district attorney’s office.  Additionally, Toland must pay a $2,000 fine, and he was placed on 10 years’ deferred-adjudication probation by 415th District Court.

Although we are not the court and have nothing to do with sentencing criminals, we wouldn’t doubt the justice of this sentence.  Was it right that this man be held guilty for this crime?  Was it right that he be tried and convicted of this offense? Was it sinful and wrong?  Indeed, what he did was wrong and sinful and worthy of such a sentence.  He did a heinous deed that should have been punished.  All of those who abuse children should suffer for their crimes.

But something is wrong here.  In the same newspaper we read of the beginning of the education program that will allow openly practicing sodomites to serve in the American military.  Here is a government that would give its “stamp of approval” on an utterly perverse, unnatural and sinful activity and relationship.  And yet, the same government issues a harsh (and justified) punishment on fondling.  Something is not equal here. Something is unjust here.  Something is hypocritical here.

Think of the vast immorality that is perpetrated in this “land of freedom.”  At least half of teenagers are actively involved in the sin of fornication.  Half of married couples “lived together” in open fornication before marriage.  Vast numbers of marriages end in divorce and most of the couples marry other partners, thereby committing adultery.  Even while married, great numbers of partners confess to committing adultery against their spouse.

Why is it that this country can allow and even promote such extensive sexual immorality while at the same time handing down a harsh sentence for “fondling”?  Yes, let the fondler be rightly punished.  But let’s not hypocritically think that all other sexual sin is permissible.  While society may accept this inequity, God does not have closed eyes to this wickedness and hypocrisy.  “Because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God” (Romans 2:5).

–Richard Hollerman

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