“Why are we regarded as cattle
and considered stupid in your sight?”
The Friends of Job
Jesus has taught Christians not to worry about tomorrow for every day has enough trouble of its own. How true this is, and a lesson is learned. Sin makes people stupid. Consider the evidence from some snapshots in a single day, September 23, 2023.
United States senator Bob Menedez thought he could take bribes from the Egyptian government and not be caught. He flaunted his Mercedes, his cash, and gold bars. The takeaway: Stupid people are arrogant.
A Californian bill was sent to Governor Gavin Newsom for signing. The bill required parents to affirm a child’s self gender identification in custody battles. The takeaway: Stupid people in government have a godless social agenda.
A top Biden official, Education Secretary Cardona, ripped parents who are ‘acting like they know what’s right for kids.’ The takeaway: Stupid people are arrogant. They think they know more than others about everything.
A Washington Post reporter, Emily Heil, who thought she could write a “hit piece” email of lies about Dave Portnoy without being exposed and confronted. As of Thursday, Sept. 21, 2023, 29 million viewers saw the video of the telephone exchange when Portnoy posted the evidence. When confronted by a man who raised 30 million dollars to help small pizza businesses during COVID she denied, she lied, she justified her behavior. The takeaway. Stupid people have no shame.
Braun razors featured an ad of a trans man with surgical scars of a double mastectomy shaving his beard. The takeaway: Stupid people are mean. They promote the cult of self-mutilation.
Many more examples could be given of stupidity in a single day, but these are sufficient.
The Bible has something to say about stupid people.
First, stupid people are always right and will not be corrected. What they do is always justifiable. The Bible says, “Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid” (Prov. 12:1).
Second, stupid people lack common sense. “Even as he walks along the road, the fool lacks sense and shows everyone how stupid he is” (Eccl. 10:3).
Third, stupid people are to be avoided. “Do not have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels” (2 Tim. 2:23-24).
The word “stupid” finds its origin in the 1540s from the French, stupide, and from the Latin stupidus, meaning dull, inane, struck senseless. The idea is that the mind, or mental faculties are blunted, dulled, struck with stupor, dumbfounded.
Certainly, the Natural Man is declared to be foolish, stupid, dull, and confused, especially in spiritual matters. The natural man “receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Cor. 2:14).
German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906 -1945) offered his theory of stupidity. After years of trying to change the minds of people caught up with the ideological madness of the Nazi party, Bonhoeffer began to reflect on how a cultured Germany country, with poets, thinkers, and religious reformers, such as Martin Luther, could turn into a collective of cowards, crooks, and criminals. He concluded that the root of the people was not malice, or ill will, but stupidity.
In his famous book, Letters from Prison, Bonhoeffer said that stupidity was more dangerous than malice because there is no defense against stupidity. Where there is malice or the deliberate hurting or someone, there can be a protest. But what is to be said to stop stupidity? Neither protest or the use of force will change the reptilian humanoid. Reasons fall on ears that are deaf. Any objective fact that would contradict a stupid person’s prejudgment will not be believed. When a fact is irrefutable, it is simply pushed aside as inconsequential, and incidental to the stated larger goal.
What becomes emotionally infuriating, and exasperating, is that the stupid person is self-satisfied, also becoming irritated, and therefore, more danger for the stupid person is prone to use physical force. The ancient proverbs states that, “He who strikes the first blow, has run out of ideas.”
Because of the great physical danger in dealing with a stupid person, great caution is necessary. A person must use discernment and wisdom. The nature of the stupid person must be understood.
Specifically, it must be comprehended that the essence of stupidity is not an intellectual defect but a moral one.
There are humans who are intellectually gifted and quick witted yet stupid. The Nazi propaganda minister, Joseph Goebbels was a German philogist, being graduated with a doctorate from Heidelberg University in 1922. He specialized in linguistics and knew the power of words and thoughts. But he was stupid.
On December 15, 2011, British author and speaker Christopher Hitchens died. Hitchens was an eloquent, clever, and devout atheist. He debated Christian intellectuals and brilliant theologians to declare that a God he did not believe in did not exist. He was a stupid man.
But it is also possible for a person to be intellectually dull and yet anything but stupid. They function from intuition.
The conclusion is that stupidity is not a congenital defect but a moral defect that is allowed to happen in the heart. Stupidity is a choice. The choice to become stupid is made easier in a group than in solitude.
Like other demagogues, Adolf Hitler understood the psychology of the masses, and exploited it in a cunning way. This means that stupidity is less a psychological problem but a sociological problem.
Every strong show of power, be it political, such as Nazism, Socialism, or Communism, or religious, such as Islamic fundamentalism, infects its adherents with stupidity. It is not that the intellect fails, but that a natural inner independence is consciously surrendered. There is a gentle feeling of euphoria.
While the stupid person is often stubborn, he is still dependent. He needs approval. He needs affirmation. He needs a reference of identification and so he speaks in slogans, catch phrases, and generalizations that has indoctrinated him. He is under a spell, blinded, misused, manipulated, and held captive in the very core of his being.
In this condition, the stupid person will become capable of any evil that is suggested. He will do evil simply because he is following orders, and because he feels it is the right thing to do. He is incapable seeing any wrong, until in grace, God awakens his conscience.
Only divine liberation, not human instruction, is able to overcome stupidity.
If there is any hope for a stupid person to recover, it will be found first in an external liberation. There must be a physical separation from that which binds it.
Anyone who has dealt with a stupid person, anyone who has dealt with a cult member understands how important separation from an ideology, or an organization is prior to conversion, or reclamation. Time and again the gospel calls for individuals to come and follow a new way.
“And the Spirit and the bride say, Come.
And let him that heareth say, Come.
And let him that is athirst come.
And whosoever will,
let him take the water of life freely”