Unrebellious Rebels

A few minutes ago I had to make a quick run in the car. As I did so, I caught 102.1fm, a local alt-rock show on the radio and listened briefly with interest to what the DJ had to say. She was speaking about how all of the things in society that were once taboo have now become the norm. This was a segue into a plug for a new tattoo parlour on King Street, but her insights were right on. It used to be the case that when one became of age, you could go to a dingy Queen Street tattoo artist and get inked. This was deemed to be such a rebellious act in earlier days, yet now it is the norm. This is a very keen observation; it seems as though you can’t walk anywhere without seeing some outlandish tattoo. This one-time act of rebellion has become a symbol of conformity.
The DJ also used premarital sex as an example, explaining how it was once such a taboo act yet now is to be expected in a relationship. Interestingly she held her opinion on whether this was a good or bad thing — interesting because usually this would be the banner of individual freedom in society. She actually commented that it’s becoming rebellious to save yourself for marriage!
Conformity is everywhere. How often do I walk down the streets of Toronto and see groups of people with jet-black, shaggy hair, big CHiPS style sunglasses, black t-shirts, dark tight blue-jeans and stylish shoes? It’s ridiculous that people actually think that they are being original! To see a pack of half-dozen twenty-somethings walk down the street dressed this way is laughable.
Society really is succeptible to the “herd mentality.” One person does something “cool” and the rest follow suit like clockwork. It’s one thing when it comes to fashion styles, it’s another when it comes to life choices.
The irony of it all is that most people think that they are living against the grain. They believe their look and their lifestyle is wholly original. Yet as the winds of change blow, everyone gets caught in the windstorm. Only we don’t know where the storm is going and how much worse it is going to get.
When the culture fails to recognise an objective, moral standard that exists outside of ones-self, man becomes autonomous. Things like premarital sexual activity become the norm and all that is lost is a person’s dignity and self-respect. It isn’t liberation, it’s bondage. And when the society is in the dumps because tabboo’s are consistently made normative, we ask why.
The DJ asked how far it will go. I answer, that unless the Word of God is taken as the rule of life and faith, it will go to the farthest limits. It is only by God’s common grace that society hasn’t been absolutely swallowed up in wrath. In reality, society owes a lot to Christians, whom God has had mercy on and stayed His judgment for a time. But it will come one day, and those outside of Christ will suffer the white-hot heat of damnation.
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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Unrebellious Rebels

  1. Allen R. Mickle, Jr.

    Ian,

    As my best friend John always says… they’re trying to be rebellious in their conformity. Interesting to say the least. They would be more rebellious if they decided to embrace Christ and His Lordship!

    Allen

  2. Ian

    The only way to be truly counter-cultural is to be converted to Christ. Living in Him is to live in a different sphere — to inhabit the already and not yet. It’s not based upon looks, ethnicity, gender, age, or whatever. It is marked out by being baptised into Christ.
    If only the world knew…

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