The Perversion of a Self Defense Mechanism
The Knights of True North
The Perverted Recovery
The Perversion of a Self-Defense Mechanism
Humans have an incredible self defense mechanism. It is seen when a person is forced to live through circumstances that seem unbearable. Some tragedies seem too terrible to endure. We, in the horror of the moment think that there is no way we will get to the end of the current trial. We as humans feel this when experiencing physical pain, but also in enduring psychological and spiritual pain. We are so engrossed in the moment that we will not allow the moment to pass. Why do we hold on to the present so tenaciously when it is hurting us. If we would allow it, the moment can pass sooner. But we concentrate and focus on nothing else than our suffering.
We do this as children wanting to become teens, then teens to adults. And over and over again, something happens when we get to the end of our waiting. Then in general terms, we look back at life’s challenges and it does not seem to have taken as long to get through as it did when it was happening.
We do make it through. The pain does subside. The torment does end. The torturers go away. And we recover. How is it that a person that has been a POW can go on and continue? How did the concentration camp survivor go on to have a family. Because God has built us with the ability to just keep living. The rape victim takes another breath. The abused child sees another day. We adapt. We keep walking. Yes, there are scars. But we are victorious because we are still here.
This is the self defense mechanism. We somehow set aside that horror and go on. I am not belittling the crime that the victim has endured. I am just saying that humans are amazing in that they can continue and recover and find a way to be fruitful people again. The terrible things that they have gone through do not have to chain them from living the rest of their lives.
However, there is a perversion of this mechanism. This happens when someone commits a great crime. It is when the one who endures a tragedy is the one that has caused it by his own sin. The victim’s defense mechanism becomes a curse from God. The victimizer continues and lives with himself even when, in the worst cases, his very life is forfeit. The murderer has no right to continue living. For God has said that if a man murders a man, the government has a responsibility to judge that man with capital punishment. Genesis 9:6 “Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.” Yet, so many murderers continue and live.
When a murderer lives through his crime, they have cursed themselves by going through their own actions. But they have also cursed themselves by continuing to live with themselves after the crime. We could recall the horrendous atrocities parents in history that because they were besieged and without food resorted to eating their own children. That injustice cannot be overstated. But the horror of the victim, in one aspect, is less than the horror of the murderer. For the murderer is cursed with the knowledge of what he has done. It is an unspeakable horror that such a person should continue and be able to live with themselves and what they have become.
It is no wonder why God says that we pollute our world when we do not judge the murderer. God says that the ground cries out when a murderer still roams this world. God will not allow the murderer to continue forever. In this present life, they will be pursued with the knowledge of their evil, even if they deny the guilt. This is why in most cases, though a murderer can be forgiven, he should still receive the justice of capital punishment. In the final judgment, God will punish every man that has not received the forgiveness of the blood of Jesus Christ. Matthew 16:27 “For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.”
by Andrew Grosjean
This article was written in 1993, during the College years at Midwestern Baptist College. I have been often amazed at the horor that people cause and allow themselves to live with. This is what the article is about.