I was a boy I read Mark Twain’s classic story, A Connecticut Yankee in
King Arthur’s Court. One of the memorable scenes in the book was a
meal at King Arthur’s table, vividly described in all its historical detail.
The knights and courtiers ate like slobs using their hands and fingers, tearing
off hunks of meat, grabbing handfuls of side dishes, sloshing ale and throwing
bones over their shoulders for the mass of dogs around the table to fight over.
It was a mannerless, napkinless, forkless bacteria-and-germ paradise.
forks were finally introduced to England during the reign of Queen Elizabeth
the First, the clergy attacked them an “immoral luxury intended to
undermine the very fiber of the people and to attract the wrath of God.”
innovations, small and great alike, meet with considerable resistance at first.
Sad to say, historically speaking, it has often been members of the clergy who
fueled the opposition.
telegraph, the railroad, “store-bought” canned goods, the automobile,
antibiotics, radio, airplanes, television and the Internet, have all been
condemned by one preacher or another as “inventions of the devil.” On
the other hand, it has often been Christians who pioneered and spearheaded the
very advancements in scientific understanding that some of their fellow
Christians were busy condemning.
all change is progress, of course. But Christians should be the first to
applaud legitimate progress. Instead of condemning innovation and new
discovery, Christians can, through example and education, urge humanity toward
the right use of its God-given creativity.
we oppose progress, we undermine the relevance of the gospel in the modern
world by making it seem backward and ignorant. But God created us to use the
intelligence and creativity he gave us, which is a reflection of God’s dynamic
creativity. It is seldom that a new invention or discovery itself is evil. What
might be evil is the wrong use that some people put it to.
has never stopped creating. In fact, every person in Christ is already a new
creation! 2 Corinthians 5:17-19 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is
a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who
reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of
reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not
counting men’s sins against them.”
Revelation 21:4 tells us that the day will come when God will at last make all
things new and wipe away all tears. There will be no more death or mourning or
crying or pain because the old order of things has passed away. Now that will be