Pursuing truth and justice has never been easy

Ignorance and cowardice can be regarded as cousins. The display of cowardice can be precisely viewed as traceable to ignorance. In cowardice are people extremely dangerous to other fellow humans. Cowards can even treat allies as enemies. Cowards have a propensity to feel comfortable when adopting defensive positions that make others wrong and the self, right—thereby, becoming combative against common survival.

Hosea 4:6. My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children. – Bible Offline

How possible could mere rejection of knowledge be destructive? Does this imply that rejecting knowledge should be regarded as deliberate? Cowardice is the only channel towards knowledge rejection. We can use a few examples to illustrate the confirmation of that reality. Cowardice causes knowledge rejection, leading towards destruction. The first example of cowardice was displayed by the Israelites.

God fulfilled His promise of taking them out of Egyptian slavery. The majority of those Israelites never appreciated the reality of coming out of Egyptian slavery, due to security considerations. They were under slavery, but they had adjusted, to conforming with remaining under the condition of Egyptian slavery. They never envisioned themselves ever possibly being set free from Egyptian slavery.

God provided several miracles, designed to help them appreciate that they were, actually, God’s children, per their ancestor Abraham’s promises. Ignorance cannot necessarily be eliminated by observing miracles. The Israelites gave Moses a very hard time, along the way to the Promised Land. On several occasions they attempted to persuade Moses to return them to Egypt, insisting life was better, under the Pharaoh.

Their last test was when twelve men were sent to spy at Canaan. God had been their pillar of strength, since their deliverance from Egypt. However, they refused to accept the greatness of God. They failed the test of being trusted with blessings to carry God’s name and reveal His power to other nations.

The understanding, manifesting in Joshua and Caleb could not be shared with the rest of them. I suppose the entire Israelites appreciated God’s power, but not to the extent of reversing the cowardice that besieged them. The Canaanite giants appeared overwhelming to them. They could not appreciate God’s power, revealed through the miracles that translated into their deliverance from Egypt.

How else could they have been assisted to appreciate God’s power?  Understandably, God displayed anger; although still maintaining His patience with them. They could not sustain their faith in God, due to the manifested cowardice. The reason for their cowardice had been the ignorance of the God they were dealing with. The second example of cowardice was displayed by David’s Brother, Eliab.

“And Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spake unto the men, and Eliab’s anger was kindled against David, and he said, Why camest thou down hither? and with whom hast thou left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know thy pride and the naughtiness of thine heart; for thou art come down that thou mightest see the battle. And David said, what have I now done? Is there not a cause? And he turned from him toward another and spake after the same manner: and the people answered him again after the former manner” (1 Samuel 17: 28-30 KJV).

What had David done that caused Eliab to be that angry against David? Eliab had been afraid of Goliath. He couldn’t imagine how his younger brother could challenge a feared giant like Goliath. Eliab’s cowardice was manifest, coupled with the invalidation of David. Eliab looked at his younger brother, David, with the physical eyes. This is what had blinded him to fail to appreciate the validity of David’s humanity. Eliab was ignorant of all humans having been created in God’s image, and that David could not have been an exception.

By invalidating David, Eliab was, actually, invalidating God. Another example of cowardice is displayed in invalidating Jesus. The Pharisees were too obsessed with the physical appearance of Jesus. They could not appreciate that, as human as Jesus appeared, to be, He could be the Son of God. Perhaps they also invalidated the background of His father, Joseph, who, as a carpenter, had not been a renowned religious figure. How could Joseph bring up a child as knowledgeable as Jesus? Ignorance can be very difficult to deal with, as also entangled in the sin of all ages, which is pride.

The same applies to modern-day Christians. There is no problem with living in ignorance, as long as one is aware of being ignorant. The yet-to-be discovered hindrance towards knowledge is the assumption of knowing what one is yet to know. It is easy to observe how most people are kept in ignorance. They hold opinions over those they interact with. They are ignorant of pride being their problem, risking their exclusion from eternal life. The warning was prophetically delivered through the apostle John, by Jesus:

“So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth” (Revelation 3:16-17 NIV).

This markedly displays a grim warning to the church in Laodicea, then comprised of cowards. Those Christians were expected to repent and turn to God. The metaphor of being “lukewarm” was used to describe lack of dedication. The passage also warns against dangers of materialism and self-sufficiency. But the materialism phenomenon is driven by cowardice.

We live in a world where truth and justice are foreign. The Master of truth and justice committed Himself to die on the cross. His murderers salivated, displaying ignorance of justice and truth; accorded to the man they were insulting. Human problems are translated in not knowing the origin of all problems.

Truth is what remains to be, undeserving of changing or alteration. Hence, falsehood is the source of all problems. Another definition of a problem can be summed up as the absence of truth, or attempting to alter what remains to be. Truth requires understanding the material universe under which we live. Justice implies avoiding harming other fellow humans.

Sentient humans can easily evaluate, and decide on what constitutes rightness and wrongness. The majority of those involved with cowardice appear as deliberately committing transgression, aware of possible consequences. However, their reasoning capacity gets clouded by emotional anger. Ignorant people are highly emotional, which then replaces their intellectual reasoning.

They accordingly get entangled into committing more transgressions while striving to disentangle themselves from such emotional troubles. Zimbabwe is rich with mineral resources and good land for farming. However, such resources have created more problems than solutions. Gold may be in abundance, but its existence has caused untold suffering among poor people.

The citizens remain in poverty while co-existing with abundant mineral resources. Countries like DRC, rich with mineral resources, are trouble spots of the entire world. Mineral resources do not necessarily make wealth accessible. The value of an individual is more precious than gold. Zimbabwean people’s problems are in not knowing anything about this truism.

Greed is considered more virtuous than moderation.  What is more attractive is wealth, rather than maintaining one’s dignity and integrity. When carefully analyzed, the cause of greed is cowardice. There are those who fear being poor, hence getting themselves obsessed with accumulation of wealth. They assume being secure in wealth, but unaware that death cannot be prevented by wealth. They worship wealth, even though claiming to love God.

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

“The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money” (Matthew 6:19-24 NIV).

The above Scripture could not appeal to ordinary people, but the privileged listeners who were His disciples. They were so many other teachings, provided by Jesus, as highlighted in His entire Sermon on the Mount. Our modern-day Christians are choosy, on matters of Christianity. The only reason why they cannot confront some of the Scriptures is cowardice.

They have reasons, designed to persuade those adhering to such Scriptures to also avoid them. Cowards are known to succumb, except those truly committed to Jesus’ teachings. The most interesting aspect about Christianity is that while Jesus dissuaded ordinary humans to follow Him, Christians lure ordinary people into Christianity. I suppose, while not easy to be converted into other religions of this world, Christianity is the easiest form of religion.

The reason for such a phenomenon is cowardice. Most people congregate into Christianity out of cowardice. They opt for Christianity out of cowardice, more than anything else. This happens to be the opposite of true Christianity, which was originally never designed for cowards.

If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the Day of Judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love” (1 John 4:16-18 NIV).

Most of those subscribing to Christianity are sincere. They love God for His goodness. The only problem is that they remain ignorant, as being clouded in cowardice. Security is considered as obtainable in the accumulation of wealth, more than any other consideration. You are considered respectable when driving expensive vehicles, even without showing the origin of such wealth.

There is a law of exchange that governs the behavior of humanity. After receiving something good from a friend, a virtuous man feels obliged to reciprocate the extended goodwill. This is derived from the fact that sentient beings are inherently ethical in their conducts. This has got nothing to do with obeying certain written laws, or the religious consideration.

This describes humanity, qualified to be God’s children. There is no single human who was not created in God’s image. All humans take their origin from God, who is their Father. It is unnecessary to feel desperate, when aware of being God’s child. Jesus expressed desperation on behalf of the entire humanity:

Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?’ which simply means: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46). However, Jesus was not under desperation when experiencing the agonies of the cross. Through it, He opened the gate for salvaging humanity. He committed Himself to die on the cross, for the purpose of human deliverance, without displaying self-pity.

His gruesome lamentation was on behalf of humanity. From that point, onwards, the way to salvation became easier, for the sentient humans, trapped in sinful conditions. The only obstacle that hinders access to salvation remains to be ignorance. The difficulty for humanity lies in failure to access salvation due to ignorance, coupled with cowardice.   

The most resented experience for humanity is loss, or deprivation of material objects, associated with death. Humans hold dearly, to material possessions. But it is the material possessions that keep them separated from their Father. Humans could do well, if striving to answer whether the Man they purport to abide by His teachings, held physical possessions.

Interestingly, modern Christianity is sustained by praying for personal possessions. Jesus said those intending to follow Him were supposed to surrender everything. Rather than praying for God’s help in surrendering everything, modern Christians pray for personal possessions, instead. This can be laughable, but quite serious, when looked at, soberly.

This kind of behavior emanates from ignorance, sustained by cowardice. Humans carry a false assumption that personal possessions are necessary for salvation. They know that at death they leave everything behind, but hardly do they ever consider Jesus’ instruction to discard everything to follow Him. All this portrays an effect of cowardice, sustained in virtual ignorance.

Andrew Masuku is the author of Dimensions of a New Civilization, laying down standards for uplifting Zimbabwe from the current state of economic depression into a model for other nations worldwide. A decaying tree provides an opportunity for a blossoming sprout. Written from a Christian perspective, the book is a product of inspiration, bringing relief to those having witnessed the strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social decay. Most Zimbabweans should find the book as a long-awaited providential oasis of hope, in a simple conversational tone.

The Print copy is now available at Amazon.com for $13.99

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