I often hear defenders of Islam speak about “the wonderful Muslims next door who were the nicest people they have ever known.”
I hear expressions of the highest regard when friends describe the homosexuals in their church who are the most polite, creative, and Christ-like people they ever met, contrasting them with the impolite straight boors who are the “typical” Christians.
During WWII there were thousands of Americans who expressed appreciation for the wonderful Nazi’s who helped their neighbors and invited children in the neighborhood to their Nazi youth camps to help them grow up to be fine young adults.
And I don’t doubt that more than a few parents have shown appreciation to the kindness of men (coaches, priests, teachers, day care workers, ministers) who shower super-attentive “loving attention” on their children.
These are all instances of our gullibility. Too often we are taken in by remarkably kind, helpful, polite behaviors that are merely a pretentious front for gross immorality or evil.
The “Muslim next door” often privately contributes to Jihadi organizations, learns or teaches anti-Semitic lessons, or promotes seditious activities all the while being the “good neighbor.”
The polite, artistically gifted homosexual is likely an influence on others to follow his lifestyle choice, failing to understand that we all have immoral predispositions that we struggle to control.
The wonderful Nazi “helping our kids” was training them to infiltrate and overthrow our government.
The “super-attentive” men turn out to be some of the most prolific child predators.
Kindness, attentiveness, helpfulness, and politeness are all very good things. But they are not better than sound morality. All too often these “very good things” overshadow underlying immoral or evil intentions or actions. We too often hold kindness and politeness above the higher values of traditional morality. Granted, traditional morality is out of style today. The ten commandments, God’s feelings about the sanctity of life and marriage, and his revulsion toward sexual perversion are thought of as oppressive, quaint relics of an outmoded culture. We act as if three thousand years of sound Biblical admonition is suddenly without merit. We have lost our perspective of what is most important. We have lost our desire and ability to discern one good above another.
Or more accurately, we have lost our desire to discern good from evil.
The next time you hear someone praise or swoon over the superficial behaviors of a person you know to be involved in or promoting perpetual immorality or evil, think twice about what is most important – about what are the most valuable attributes of that person. Judge not, you say? We are always judging. We often commit errors in judgment when we respect a person on the basis of their politeness rather than on the more significant basis of their character and morality. Be careful how you judge.
We all judge. We need to judge the right things.