Subject: American Leftism Part 4: The Religion of Narcissism
Romans 7:18 “I know that in me nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find.”
The dictionary defines narcissism as “excessive interest in or admiration of oneself; self-centeredness involving a sense of entitlement, a lack of empathy, and a need for admiration.” As the Jussie Smollet hoax unraveled (back in February he claimed he was racially assaulted in Chicago by white Trump supporters), the distinction between the Christian notion of repentance and Leftist self-promotion becomes clearer.
While Leftist journalists don’t defend Smollet’s actions (he premediated a fake hate crime to draw attention to himself), they blame America itself as the culprit – America is guilty of having racism “in its DNA” (as Barack Obama once said) so that an assault like this, even though a staged lie, could very likely happen.
Christian journalist Carl Jackson’s article, ‘Five Takeaways from the Jussie Smollett Hoax’, gives a stinging rebuke: “What does it say about America when a gay, rich, black man pretends to be the victim of a racist, homophobic crime? It tells us that such crimes are rare. It also tells us that most Americans are too consumed with their own lives to care about Smollett’s race and sexual preference. Americans in general appreciate diversity. It’s democrats that are intolerant… the Jussie Smollett case is indicative of what the Left has become; dangerous, irrational, hateful, judgmental, close-minded, self-absorbed and phony.”
In our increasingly secular culture, generations of students at our universities are being taught by leftist professors what Jussie Smollet believes, that the problem we must solve is American society. But if you grew up in church, you learned a biblical truth that is the best medicine against narcissism. The fundamental problem with the world is YOU. British philosopher G. K. Chesterton once responded to a news reporter who asked him what was wrong with the world: “I am.” As the apostle Paul exclaims in our verse, “In me nothing good dwells”. I am a sinner who is guilty on a daily basis of moral corruptness.
Columnist Dennis Prager explained this in his article ‘Explaining American Leftists’: “Earlier this year, I had a debate/dialogue with two left-wing students at the University of California, Berkeley. My final question to them was ‘Do you believe people are basically good?’ Without a moment’s pause, both students said yes. I told them they think that way because they live in such a decent country. It is easy to remain naive in America, where most are insulated from the suffering inflicted on so much of humanity in deeply corrupt, poverty-stricken and war-torn societies. Nevertheless, given the way humans have treated one another throughout history, and only two generations after Auschwitz, only the naive can believe people are basically good. And since no Western religion (i.e., any religion based on the Bible) has ever posited that people are basically good, this naivete is fueled by secularism, which allows for the pursuit of knowledge but destroys wisdom.” Prager’s point is on target. So America is filled with good people who are racist? It’s incoherent. Removing Bible teaching from generations of our youth has replaced wisdom with stupidity.
Just contrast the Bible’s wisdom with the Left. The Bible teaches that people are not basically good. Leftism teaches that people are basically good, but America is bad. The Bible teaches that evil originates in the heart – from our nature. Leftism teaches that evil comes from religion, capitalism, big business, Americanism. The Bible teaches that this world can only be made right one day when Jesus Christ returns. Leftism teaches that man has the power within him to make the world right, here on Earth. The Bible instructs us on how to live a morally good life, and to never trust your feelings for moral guidance. Leftism has contempt for anyone who is guided by the Bible, and bases what is morally right on your heart.
Prager also explains that it is the rejection of biblical wisdom that has brought us to this time in American history: “The Bible is regarded as myth, silly at best, malicious at worst — there is no God, certainly not the morality-giving and judging God of the Bible; there is no afterlife; human beings are a purposeless coincidence with no more intrinsic purpose than anything else in the universe. In short: This Is All There Is.”
Those of us who trust in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior know otherwise. The evidence for the truth of Christianity, that we are all morally bankrupt and in need of a Savior to forgive our sins and make us new, fuels our personal accountability to this loving, gracious God who has given us purpose in life: to know Him, and to share this knowledge with those we meet. This is the greatest weapon to combat Leftism.
Ed Croteau is a resident of Lee’s Summit and hosts a weekly study in Lees Summit called “Faith: Substance and Evidence.” He can be reached with your questions through the Lee’s Summit Tribune at Editor@lstribune.net.