Late last night I was reading in the Bible about the power of light. There was a particular passage that really stuck in my mind: "I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me." Acts 26:18
What does this Bible verse have to do with virtues and vices in 2008? Simply this: if the CEO's of companies had believed in God versus Satan, had curbed their greed, had served their clients and their stockholders instead of themselves, the word "bailout" would not have become the most-used term in the English language. If these leaders had become bearers of "light" to their people, instead of bringing darkness, we would not have had the "year of the bailout" in 2008!
The height of vice was very apparent in the saga of Bernard Madoff. Despite several warnings about disgraced Wall Street money manager Madoff's investment methods, he successfully dodged regulators for years. Today, the House Financial Services Committee plans a hearing to find out how the SEC failed to detect Madoff's alleged $50 billion Ponzi scheme. How could a man of his standing within the financial community carry out such an elaborate plan to defraud so many people?
"Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you!" The answer for us in 2009 is quite simply- WAKE UP! Let us not be deluded into thinking that vice is a thing of the past. There are many pitfalls just waiting to be tripped into. Our main defense is to remain vigilant and to expose the perpretrators. Even if the infraction seems minor, look these people in the eye and say "don't do that". Only when we remind ourselves that we are the light will we be able to change anything. God is totally separate from darkness. The darker the darkness, the brighter Jesus' light shines!