What sorrow for those who say that evil is good and good is evil, that dark is light and light is dark, that bitter is sweet and sweet is bitter. What sorrow for those who are wise in their own eyes and think themselves so clever. Isaiah 5:20-21 (NLT)
Have you ever been in one of those wacky houses? You know, the kind that are in amusement parks? When you enter the house, you feel like you’ve entered the twilight zone because your eyes deceive you. The uneven walls and floor give the illusion that you should be walking downhill, but you’re struggling to walk and feel like you’re walking uphill instead. When a ball is placed on a table that appears to be leaning, it rolls up rather than down! Weird! Your perception and balance are thrown off by the environment of the room around you. Nothing seems to make sense. Those are fun houses to experience, mainly because you can leave them for what is more “normal.” The prophet, Isaiah, describes this kind of experience among the people of Israel. As a nation, they had departed from God, and he was appealing to them with a voice of reason. In Isaiah 29:16 he told them,
“You turn things upside down. You think the clay is equal to the potter. You think that something that is made can tell the one who made it, ‘You did not make me!’ This is like a pot telling its maker, ‘You know nothing.’”
Their attitude toward God had caused them to turn things upside down. As a result, they were out of balance and experiencing great sorrow that would only intensify if they didn’t get right-side up. How do you know when your world is upside down? How can you turn the sorrow of an upside-down world right-side up? In Isaiah 5:20-21, the prophet said,
“What sorrow for those who say that evil is good and good is evil, that dark is light and light is dark, that bitter is sweet and sweet is bitter. What sorrow for those who are wise in their own eyes and think themselves so clever.”
Our world is upside down when we redefine what God says is wrong and try to make it right, when we say that evil is good and good is evil, and when we substitute darkness for light and say that light is dark. It creates confusion and a false sense of security when we relabel sin to justify our behavior and avoid a guilty conscience. We only deceive ourselves and others with that kind of “double-talk.” Sin has caused our world to be upside down, and we all feel the effects.
The only way to get right-side up in an upside-down world is through honest confession. In the Bible, the word confession simply means to agree with God, to say the same thing He says about our lives. When we do, the Bible says, God is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If you want to live right-side up in an upside-down world, begin with confession. Confess your need for God. Confess your own faults and failures to Him. Then, confess your forgiveness. Agree with God that He has forgiven you and washed you clean!