It was somewhat shocking, what happened while “watching” the Lou Dobbs program on Fox Business Network a week or so ago. (Technically, being blind, I was “listening” rather than “watching.”) I heard Lou’s guest say the words “I am as mad as Hell!”.
Now, even Mr. Dobb’s wife, he has confided on the program, has gotten onto him for using during the broadcast what we might consider the milder cuss words in today’s vernacular. But, it wasn’t the show’s host who used the word this time.
Lou’s guest was Dr. Robert Jeffress, senior pastor of the megachurch, First Baptist of Dallas, who uttered the word. That it was Dr. Jeffress who said it was slightly jolting.
As I recall, the topic revolved around the upcoming midterm elections. Specifically, it was about the vitriol the mainstream news conglomerate continues to spew against President Donald J. Trump. The host and Dr. Jeffress agreed that every effort was being made by the leftist cabal, consisting of the mainstream news and entertainment media and the Democrat Party, to demonize the president and all who adhere to his Make America Great Again agenda.
The pastor said something along the lines of, “The voters are angry. In this election, they might say, through their collective vote, something like was uttered in the old movie, Network. Like when the guy said, ‘I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore.’”
I’m not here casting a condemning glance at Pastor Jeffress. I have said worse–like the other morning when I knocked the “I Love New York” coffee mug given me by my much beloved, honorary, granddaughter from my desk and broke the handle. So, I certainly have no room to cast aspersions.
The quotation Dr. Jeffress used to express the need for voters to fight the political evil going on, ironically, was made by the character who was a network news anchor, Howard Beale, played by Peter Finch. He had become somewhat senile and was being removed as anchor. The character, during his broadcast, urged all to take action. He shouted, “I want you to get up right now, sit up, go to your windows, open them and stick your head out and yell, ‘I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore!’ Things have got to change!”
There is a lot wrapped up in that term, ”mad as Hell.” To be in that state of mind is, I am certain, beyond any mindset one can conjure.
To be that angry implies that the mindset has been reached like that of those who are in that eternal, infernal place. To anyone who has read Inferno by Dante Alighieri, the briefest glimpse of the madness might be achieved. But, being of human authorship, the descriptions of that fictional Hell can provide fodder for but the slightest imagining of what must be the reality.
The ultimate madness that is the final result of turning away from the God of Heaven comes to fruition in that place called Hell. But the mindset that determines to turn one’s back on the Almighty begins at birth. We are born sinful creatures–lost from our very conception because of original sin. When we mature to the point that we can know we must accept or reject God’s offer of redeeming grace, and when we choose the latter, the madness–spiritual and eventually mental–begins to fester. It incubates growing sinfulness–rebellion against Heaven and all that is righteous. Turning one’s back to the Lord of Heaven moves one down the road of madness as framed by the Apostle Paul.
We have looked at the scriptural condemnation before. Here it is again to reinforce with biblical description where I’m convinced this generation of the anti-God rebels is positioned:
And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful. (Romans 1:28-31)
We have witnessed these anti-God characteristics grow and play out within American society and culture in recent decades. The madness has increased and the reprobate mindset Paul alludes to truly dominates the national political landscape at this very moment. For whatever time is left in this dispensation of grace, we must wrestle–God’s way–against the powers and principalities, against the wickedness in high places, as given in Ephesians 6:12.
The specific, God-ordained way to do so as we face this time of determining which way the United States will choose is to earnestly pray according to 2 Chronicles 7: 14–then to vote against the madness assaulting America.