It’s a political chant. “Drain the swamp!” Mosquitoes must finally be glad to have the pressure off them. Where is the swamp of depravity?
People, using the slogan, often point to many places where they perceive the swamp is located. One such alleged location in recent years is: 38.9072° N, 77.0369° W However, no matter which GPS coordinates are followed, even the most serious seekers fail to find the actual swamp. They only see more evidence and more mosquitoes of a nearby swamp; but the swamp itself seems to be somewhat elusive.
‘Drain the swamp’ has become an anti-establishment slogan in politics. The accusatory chant suggests that institutionalized swamps are producing slippery crookedness, sickening corruption, unscrupulous graft, secret sexual escapades, patronage, pork-barrelling, nepotism, influence-peddling, bribery, etc.
How naïve and misguided one is in thinking the swamp is found in a city or on a street or in a complex or building or a political party or system. One obviously ignores history to reach such a conclusion – in fact, ignores the history of the human family and avoids (or perhaps denies) a critical personal self-assessment.
If you could see me as I write this, my finger is pointing to my chest. The swamp is not out there. It is in here – as I tap my chest.
Jesus Christ was the first to pin-point the GPS coordinates of the swamp. Here’s what he told a bunch of holier-than-thou people who were condemning the outward actions of people:
“What comes out of a person is what defiles them. For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and defile a person.” Mark 7:20-23
Universally and historically, humans have repeatedly proven the extreme accuracy of Jesus’ assessment of the real issue in society. The swamp is the human heart – mine and yours. Honest people will agree that the heart of the problem is the heart.
Ta-Nehisi Coates is a well-known journalist and writer – an atheist and feminist. He writes this about the source of infidelity, sexual predatory activity and other things most humans try to keep secret:
“I’ve been with my spouse for almost 15 years. In those years, I’ve never been with anyone but the mother of my son. But that’s not because I am an especially good and true person. In fact, I am wholly in possession of an unimaginably filthy and mongrel mind. But I am also a dude who believes in guard-rails, as a buddy of mine once put it. I don’t believe in getting “in the moment” and then exercising will-power. I believe in avoiding “the moment.” I believe in being absolutely clear with myself about why I am having a second drink, and why I am not; why I am going to a party, and why I am not. I believe that the battle is lost at Happy Hour, not at the hotel. I am not a “good man.” But I am prepared to be an honorable one.” (1)
Human depravity is a fact that many deny and even resent. The reality is: we are totally broken. Everyone. Everywhere. Read God’s sweeping indictment of the condition of the human heart in Romans Chapter 3. The writer gets to this point in the chapter – “that every mouth may be stopped (silenced) and all the world become guilty before God.” Romans 3:19
Most will admit they have the potential to do more than they have ever done yet. Some will go so far as to say: “I am far worse than anything I’ve ever done.” These people have faced the reality that the swamp is the human heart.
The Bible speaks of the need for a new birth into God’s family and speaks of regeneration where a new life is poured into the heart when one repents of their sin and turns by faith to embrace Jesus Christ. Read Ephesians Chapter 2 in the Holy Bible.
There is only one way for the swamp of the human heart to be addressed. God is willing to pour into your heart His powerful love. He will begin the change in you from the inside out. Pour in. Flush out.
The Apostle Paul wrote to Christians who had already faced the swamp of their own hearts and had experienced the new birth and the love of God. He said:
(5) … God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. (6) You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. (7) Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. (8) But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (9) Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! (10) For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! Romans 5:5-10
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