Monday, June 5, 2017

I'm Okay. You're Okay.

In 1969 psychologist Thomas Anthony Harris wrote a self-help book called I'm OK – You're OK. It sold over fifteen-million copies. In the book Harris proposed four life positions:
  1. I'm OK, You're Not OK
  2. I'm Not OK, You're Not OK
  3. I'm Not OK, You're OK
  4. I'm OK, You're OK
Now, many years later, We're all OK - at least we all believe that we are! There are many reasons for this, but many once offensive taboos are now commonplace. People have become comfortable with not being okay,

Of course okay (OK) means different things to different people, to different cultures, and in different realms. In society, being OK may mean that a person obeys the law and contributes something to society. In psychology I'm OK may mean that the person is functional -  a person can live with whom one is. In religion one may be OK if they have faith in what they believe. Even atheists may feel OK because they have learned to live with mortality.

Are people born OK? Is the newborn infant OK? Of course, that is certainly debatable.  Most people accept that babies are born innocent.
Matthew 18:3 "And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven."
Here Jesus seemed to say, You're not OK, Little children are OK. With that said, it would seem that little children are innocent.  However, does this speak of the moral condition of the child or the ability to believe without questioning? Little children are easy to convert because they believe what they are told by those in authority. Perhaps, being as little children is the readiness to convert.

On the other hand, are little children innocent? There are two major positions on that: (1) They are innocent because they don't understand the concept of right or wrong, or (2) they are guilty of sinning but not held accountable because of their lack of understanding.

Indeed parents begin to teach children right and wrong at birth. Are they unintentionally condemning their own children. Should they teach infants that anything goes so that everything is right? We find that the Jewish people did what was right in their own eyes (Deut. 12:8). That's being as little children because that's exactly what they do!

There is scripture which specifically addresses this question:
Psalm 51:5  "Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me."
I believe, as do many ancient theologians that original sin was using sex for pleasure rather than for reproduction.  That viewpoint is from the act of covering their genitals of which our forebears were ashamed. They had the right tools, so to speak, but wrong purposes. For that reason, ever since, mankind has been conceived in ecstasy rather than in obedience. To be honest, I love that part of conception. However, could it be that, that is because I too was shaped in iniquity?

Regardless, it would seem that because people are humans, they are born in sin. That is the human nature of all.  Let us look further:
Psalm 58:3 "The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies."
Wicked people come right out of the womb as sinners who speak lies. Of course babies can't talk but their actions are deceptive from the beginning. Even with their crying babies are trying to convince the mother that something is wrong when all they want is appeasement.  Shortly after that, as they begin to speak, they outright lie to get what they want. Possibly at the moment of birth, they are innocent but immediately sin, of course without the knowledge of good and evil. That is at least a propensity to sin, and infants are not OK!
Isaiah 53:6  "... the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all."
As such everyone is a sinner because Adam was. Iniquity is sin. We are all sinful because Adam sinned. Indeed:
Romans 3:10  "There is none righteous, no, not one: 11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. "
No one is without sin. Given that by human nature, none seek after God, that in itself is sinful. Since infants don't seek anything but attention, they are under the law of Sin. However, because of God's grace they are not held accountable for sinning because they fail to understand. As such infants are not OK but fail to know that they are not! I'm not OK, and babies are not OK.

Because no one is OK, everyone, even from birth, requires redemption.  God provides that:
John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
If you can accept this verse as truth, you're still not OK but you're forgiven for not being OK. Christians still sin, and to believe one is without sin, is sinful because the Lord created everyone in iniquity since the time of Adam. In order to be saved, one must profess, I'm not OK!

The world teaches that most are OK. They proffer that even the killer has redeeming qualities which merit compassion. Of course, we must be compassionate, but on God's terms, not ours. There are consequences to crime, and thus sin, because all crimes are sins. The consequence of atrocious acts is that some pay with their very life. Of course, that's for those who are reprobate -  those that even society knows will never reform. They are not OK.

I'm OK; you're OK is the lie of Satan because none of us are OK. We can be reprieved but we're still not OK until our bodies are glorified, thus returned to the original condition in which God created Adam. That is when we're glorified after death.

Some say, "I've been good. I deserve heaven." God says, "You are evil from birth. You deserve death." Someone is lying and my suggestion is that it's not God! You're not good. You're not OK. However, you can get OK in the Lord's eyes because he has the power to forget past sins. You're still not OK but his sacrifice made you acceptable. That's called justification because he paid the price for your non-Ok-ness. It is not as if you were always OK, but that you're not OK but forgiven!

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