In his excellent book The Book that Made Your World by Vishal Mangalwadi, he begins by saying: “On April 8 1994 an electrician accidentally discovered a dead body in Seattle, WA. A shotgun had taken the person’s life. The police investigation concluded that he victim of this ghastly tragedy was the rock legend Kurt Cobain (b. 1967) and that he had committed suicide a few days earlier. Cobain previous attempt at suicide by drug overdose had been unsuccessful. His wife, singer Courtney Love, is said to have called the police multiple times to have them confiscate his guns before he killed himself or harmed others.
Cobain, the lead singer and guitarist for the rock band Nirvana captured his generation’s loss of anchor, center, or soul so effectively that their album Never Mind sold ten million copies.
The phrase “never mind” means don’t bother, don’t concern yourself. Why should you mind if nothing is true, good, or beautiful in any absolute sense? Should a man be bothered about his adorable daughter’s on-going need for a father? “Never mind” is a logical virtue for a nihilist who thinks that there is nothing out there to give meaning and significance to anything here—be it your daughter, wife, or life.”
It was reported that prior to the 1960’s teenage suicide was virtually non-existent among American youth. By 1980 almost 400,000 adolescents attempted suicide every year. By 1987 suicide had become the second largest killer of teens after automobile accidents. By the 1990’s suicide slipped to number 3 because young people were killing each other as often as they killed themselves. And why? Because they had nothing to live for. If God does not exist then life has no real meaning.
A man named B. F. Skinner is the father of what we call “behaviorism”. This basically means that there is neither God nor soul. Human beings are chemicals turned animals, qualitative no different than dogs. Our life as human beings is determined by environment, chemistry, chance and cultural conditioning.
Another example of our hopelessness is defined by Ingrid Newkirk, the president of PETA. Among other things she has said: “Six million people died in concentration camps, but six billion broiler chickens will die this year in slaughter houses.” This is laughable, but you see what little value she places on human life! We can abort millions of children with no consequence at all and yet she’s concerned about broiler chickens! She also said: “Animal liberationists do not separate out the human animal, so there is no rational basis for saying that a human being has special rights. A rat is a pig is a dog is a boy. They are all mammals. When it comes to the central nervous system, and the ability to feel pain, hunger, and thirst, a rat is a pig is a dog is a boy.” Though this is partially true, human beings are not in the same category as animals.
That is our problem. We do not see ourselves with any significant purpose. In Ecclesiastes 3:11 God said “that He put eternity in the hearts of men.” This means that we were created for a relationship with God. Without Him our search for meaning is futile and as Kurt Cobain found, empty.
In the book of Genesis there is a distinction between man and animals. Man was given a soul, animals were not. In Genesis 2:7 the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living being.
Who are we? In Deuteronomy 7:6, God said: “For you are a holy people to the Lord your God; the Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for Himself, a special treasure above all the peoples on the face of the earth.” All men are created in the image of God and can understand the value of their life only in Christ. Therefore, it is only those who are believers who can understand their special relationship to God.
In I Peter 2:9, Peter said: “You are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” This is our identity and this alone gives us meaning and purpose in life. Let us therefore learn more and more about our relationship with God.
See you Sunday