Friday, November 8, 2013

Calvin's Psychotic Philosophy

Fear of the LORD is the foundation of wisdom.  
Knowledge of the Holy One results in good judgment.
Proverbs 9:10 (NLT)
Bill Watterson’s cartoon strip “Calvin and Hobbes” has long been my favorite.  Calvin is an outspoken 6 year-old who borders on psychotic.  Really!
Note the textbook definition:
Psychosis (noun) loss of contact with reality  a psychiatric disorder such as schizophrenia or mania that is marked by delusions, hallucinations, incoherence, and distorted perceptions of reality.
Calvin has a stuffed toy tiger he named Hobbes.  Whenever Calvin and Hobbes are alone, Hobbes becomes Calvin’s alive, full-size tiger; Hobbes serves as Calvin’s psychological sounding board, whipping-boy and pal.  He’s an imaginary friend with polyester fur.  Delusions, hallucinations, incoherence and distorted perceptions of reality are Calvin’s constant companions.  He’s even got Hobbes convinced!
Have you ever known someone suffering a break from reality?  In the most severe instances we hear all about them on CNN after the Shopping Mall shooting.
I’m not a psychiatrist, but Scripture informs me of my reality – I was created for God, have been redeemed by the blood of Christ’s sacrifice, and my only hope is to place my trust in Jesus.  To break with that reality would, indeed be psychotic!  Yet, many do!


Why do people turn away from the loving hand of God, risk total and eternal separation from their Creator, the one who gives them their first breath, and every other breath which follows?  Why do people reject God?
It’s a question as old as the hurt in Adam and Eve’s hearts over one son, Cain, who killed the other son, Able.  And the answer is still the same – “me”!  The answer has always been that I prefer to sit on the throne of my own choices.  I want to do what I want to do, when I want to do it, in the way I want to do it, and for however long I want to do it!  (How many times can you fit “I” into one sentence?  I’m not sure, but ask Calvin; he knows everything!).

But Scripture says…

The Proverb writer says the foundation of wisdom is fearing (obeying, acknowledging, reverencing) God.  To apply that in reverse (a typical Calvin approach) would be to say:

The foundation of idiotic behavior is to reject God!

Many people do not actually think they’re rejecting God, because they know He’s there, and they try not to rile Him too much.  When they compare their life with Hitler or Jeffrey Dahmer, or some other serial killer, they’re not so bad; they figure they get a pass with the majority.

Psychotic!  Break with reality!  

Rationalizing my behavior is not righteousness!

The Proverb writer also said knowledge of the Holy One results in good judgment.  That “knowledge” is intimacy with God.  The closer you get to Him, the better your judgment.  And, you cannot get close to him, except through Jesus:
Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.     John 14:6  (NLT)
Fearing God, fellowship with Jesus, following the Holy Spirit – either that or Psychosis, break with reality.  
Those are the choices, Calvin; what’s it going to be?

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