One of the saddest, but most insightful events going on today is the explosion of sexually exploitive behavior against women. Lately, it seems there is not a day that goes by without some new national figure being caught for sexually inappropriate behavior. The most recent case of NBC anchor and icon Matt Lauer being fired for such behavior is part of a shocking tsunami of sexual abuse that has been going on for years. Sadly, what we are hearing about is probably just the "tip of the iceberg" and we can be sure that in the days ahead other women will be coming forward to challenge those in power and the public eye with new allegations of sexual wrongdoing.
Did you ever stop and ask, "How did we get here as a nation?" How did America end up spending much of its news and media time covering the sexual excesses and abuses of its leaders? Surely the issues underway now have been building for over a generation. And while all of this tells us a lot about our society and politics, it ultimately tells us much more about human nature and what the Lord is trying to say to us.
Certainly, much of what is happening to America today started out with what is referred to as the "Women's Movement" of the 1960's. A generation ago, women began to politically organize for more rights and freedoms so they could be treated equally in every area of life from the home to the work place. And while some good things came from that search for better treatment of women, few saw the dark side that was being sown at the same time.
You see, as the women's movement grew in power and strength to change the roll and place of women is society, it also created a generation of women and men that started to want new moral and sexual freedoms as well. Few realized that a search for such personal freedoms would eventually turn into unrestricted abortion in 1973 with the landmark case of "Roe vs. Wade." Once the Nation decided that women and men could have the moral freedom to abort their own children, it wasn't long until many of the boundaries on sex, marriage and the protection of women began to dramatically change. As a result, our sexual standards and view of woman, once informed by Biblical moral values, was diminished. In its place we have seen an explosion of open abortion, casual sex, STDs and the redefinition of marriage. Sadly, our culture has become the "hook-up" culture today where men and women find casual sex partners using the latest software for their phones. The overall respect and honor for women in general has eroded. As a result, it must come as no surprise then that with many of our sexual standards and boundaries gone women are being abused by men at a greater level.
Now what is revealing about the current explosion of sexually abusive behavior toward women are the values and beliefs of those doing it. The vast majority of people committing these acts of sexual abuse are people who have worked tirelessly in their professions to undermine and dismantle virtually any moral or sexual standard. Many of these same individuals have been vocal supporters of abortion and unrestricted sexual freedom for everyone without moral judgment. It has been this same group that has worked relentlessly to attack the Christian Church and keep any religious values or morals out of our schools and society in general through clever legal strategies manipulating our laws and Constitution.
A good example of seeing how all of this comes into focus can be seen in how many in the media, Hollywood and other spheres of power and influence dealt with the sexually abusive behavior of former President Bill Clinton. President Clinton's behavior against women was outrageous, well documented and went on for over 30 years while in public office. And yet the media, Hollywood and others in power largely chose to ignore it, suppress it and hide it from the public. Large numbers of the same people being accused of such behavior today were the ones that gave cover to President Clinton and others in Washington and Hollywood as our society continued its moral decline. By suppressing the truth about such abuse of women and silencing the victims by ignoring them, these powerful individuals created a culture where they themselves could engage in such behavior without any accountability. So, in a way, many in power gave cover to the same sin they were guilty of and hoped they would never have to face up to what they did. All of that is beginning to change right now. America is beginning to look at our national charcterand the picture isn't very pretty. America is getting a hard lesson on the power of sin in all of us.
As we stop for a moment and reflect on all of this, we arrive at some very basic, but powerful truths that seem to be in short supply in the public square, even the Church world. After all, when was the last time you heard a good old fashion sermon on sexual sin or sin of any kind? The message of the hour is that all of us are sinners, whatever our political or religious views. Sin is NOT about Republicans or Democrats, it is about our human nature and what has happned to all of us. The purpose of every moral and sexual standard in the Bible was to protect us and also remind us that we all have sinned and desperately need a Savior. When a society tries to eliminate such protections and standards, the Lord in His mercy allows us to see ourselves for whom we really are in life, and it is UGLY! Most of the people in the news lately have gotten a "wake up call" about who they really are in life, whether they will accept that truth or not. They are just sinners in need of a Savior. Contrary to their own worldview, they are not smart, rich, powerful, beautiful and important people. They are ALL just sinners. The "experiment" that has gone on in America the last 50 years or so in trying to live without any truth and/or sexual standards has been shown for what it always was and is--a complete and total lie!
It is hard to know right now what will happen to Matt Lauer. While his contract with NBC seems to be over, that is just this life. The great hope is that he will realize he has been wrong about himself and his understanding of life's moral laws and find the Lord's love and grace in the Gospel. Matt is no better or worse than any of us. We are all sinners in need of a Savior. Every American needs to realize that the Lord is using these high-profile cases to get people's attention and wake up the Nation. In a similar way, the Lord used King David's sin with Bathsheba and her husband as a way to get everyone's attention in the nation of Israel, starting with David (2 Samuel 11 & 12). The Lord never excuses sin. Mercifully, the Lord brings sin to our attention so we can repent and turn to the Lord for redemption, grace and forgiveness. David needed to be held accountable as do we all. America's current moral chaos and sexual abuse of our women is a loud wake-up call from Heaven. May we all hear God's call and turn away from sin and toward the forgiving mercy and love that only comes from the Lord Jesus Christ and His finished work on the Cross for all our sin.