"Nature and the Vacuum"
April 29, 2015
(The LORD said) "I will give them a heart to know that I am the LORD, and they shall be My people and I will be their God, for they shall return to Me with their whole heart." Jeremiah 24:7
Nature abhors a vacuum.
Aristotle was the first fellow we know who played around with that theory. The basic thinking was that if a space has nothing in it, something will quickly move in to fill the void. I don't know how that works out in physics, but I'm comfortable with the idea when it comes to spirituality.
For example, the Russian Revolution embraced the idea that religion was the opiate of the masses and was responsible for many of humanity's wrongs. For seven decades the government tried to weed out any and every religious influence in the hearts and minds of the people.
It was the hope of the state that they would be able to fill the spiritual vacuum they had created.
It was an interesting social experiment. It was also an experiment that failed miserably. Is that an overstatement? Not at all. In 2013 President Putin signed a law which made mandatory the teaching of religion in Russia's public schools.
Instead of learning from Russia's failed experiment, America seems bent on following it. No longer is religion the fourth "R" in our public schools, and the greeting "Merry Christmas!" has been taken from the vocabulary of many retail stores.
But it gets worse. In December, a Ranger chaplain received an administrative "letter of concern" because a solder had complained the chaplain had advocated Christianity and used the Bible during a mandatory suicide prevention session. Two months ago a Navy chaplain was removed from his post because, in private counseling, he spoke against homosexuality and sex outside of marriage.
And this is where we get back to "nature abhors a vacuum."
After the atheists have used the system to remove Christianity's influence, and after the last prayer has been banished, and the last doctrine shut down, what will the country put in place to fill the spiritual vacuum we have manufactured?
What comfort will be approved for a chaplain to give a dying man on the battlefield?
What reason can a school give to encourage its students to stop bullying in the classroom?
I don't know what will fill that vacuum in the public arena. On the other hand, I do know God's people will always find comfort, strength, peace, forgiveness and salvation in the Savior.
And someday, by God's grace, someday our nation may realize and repent of what it has deliberately done in creating this spiritual vacuum it was not prepared to fill.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, keep our church and our family in Your grace. If it be possible, open the eyes of our people and bring them back to Your path. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries