I was watching an episode of Star Trek: Next Generation today. I really enjoy that show (not as much as Deep Space Nine however) and always can continue watch it and glorify God in that I know what premises are erroneous about our nature, where we come from, etc. but today one episode particularly struck me. Here are the lines that prompted me to again praise God, and pray for those that think this way, which is ever present and on the rise:
Counselor Troi: Poverty was eliminated on Earth a long time ago. And a lot of other things
disappeared with it: hopelessness, despair, cruelty...
Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain): Young lady, I come from a time when men achieve
power and wealth by standing on the backs of the poor - where prejudice and intolerance are
commonplace - and power is an end unto itself. And you're telling me, that isn't how it is
Counselor Troi: That's right.
How arrogant we are to think, and although this is fiction some people (including Gene Roddenberry, the founder of this Star Trek franchise) do think this way.
To eliminate poverty? Sounds good...but Jesus said the poor would always be with us (and ultimately...who defines what poverty is?) Eliminate hopelessness, despair, cruelty? That is just trying to turn a blind eye to what we are as humanity. We are cruel from our earliest years, and no matter how fulfilled, how rich, how poor, how much we are loved, or not...we all experience hopelessness and despair for a wide variety of reasons, but ultimately because we each know what is true about ourselves, deep down in places we try not to think about...that we are not good, and that we need someone to save us from ourselves.
What she describes is heaven, not some possible future great social triumph of man's intellect and common good will.
Praise be to Him instead that sent Christ, who will usher all of those that are His together into such a place in the future!