Proverbs 30:11-12 (ESV)
There are those who curse their fathers and do not bless their mothers. There are those who are clean in their own eyes but are not washed of their filth.
Today’s passage describes two major marks of a godless society. In the original Hebrew, “there are those” would actually be the word “kind” or “generation.” And if you live in a society where these verses have become prevalent, you are living in perilous times, indeed, and you can expect to see the natural consequences of this type of wicked living taking over the headlines and dominating the popular culture.
The first verse describes a generation who has a blatant disregard for their father’s and mother’s. Not only are they thankless and graceless, but they actively seek to disobey, disregard, and disrespect their parents. They have no interest in obeying the fifth commandment and so they forfeit God’s promise attached to it (Ex. 20:12). In the American context this problem really took off in the 1950’s and 60’s and has become widespread and pervasive today but make no mistake: Any one of us can be guilty of it. Do you need to reconcile with your parent(s)? Do you need to seek forgiveness for the way you have treated them in the past, or how you are treating them today?
The second verse describes a generation caught up in self-righteousness. They have rejected any notion of absolute right and wrong and actually consider themselves to be morally superior, despite the clear sinfulness of their actions and opinions. They despise the imposition of any moral standards that they do not make up themselves. They have no problem re-defining any and all social institutions along with basic ideas like right, wrong, sexual ethics, marriage, gender, and even life itself. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things (Phil. 3:19). Do you need to confess and repent of any ideas that are contrary to the Word of God?
A Puritan writer once said, “The seed of every sin exists in every human heart.” It’s easy to see how today’s younger generations are already on this path in many ways, but we have to be careful not to exempt our own thoughts, ideas, and behaviors from biblical scrutiny. We must pray for, engage patiently, and witness boldly and compassionately to “these kinds” of people because it is only through the changing power of the Gospel that they have any hope left at all.