Naive, this adjective usually brings mixed attitudes in people’s mind; some take it as an insult while others are completely oblivious of its potential harm. According to Thefreedictionary.com, the word ‘naive’ means ‘lacking worldly experience and understanding, characterized by a lack of sophistication and critical judgment, lacking developed powers of analysis, reasoning, or criticism.’ For instance, we tend to be naive when we do not count the change after the cashier hands it to us because we place a sense of ‘trust’ in a complete stranger. In this situation, we omit the power of judgment. A little naivety is inevitable at times as we cannot possess understanding in all matters; however, going to the extent where we habitually do not use critical judgment, this is cause for alarm. And our faith deteriorates when we, Christians, become so naive.
In this time of pandemic, we have been glued to the TV, watched every news update, seen every virus-related case around the world, and followed every advice given by health officials and politicians. Not for once, have we tried to think and analyze critically, sit back and ponder about the entire situation. In general, there are always two sides to each story; a good judge is not the one who solely listens to the plaintiff, but who gives ear to the defendant as well. The Bible calls us to be sober and vigilant (1 Peter 5:8), be shrewd as snakes and innocent as doves (Matthew 10:16), and test every spirit (1 John 4:1). This implies that God desires us to be wise during our momentary stay in this world. Yet, our naivety comes to play when we consider that everything we are told is accurate without questioning the information for a split of a second. Consequently, Christians have begun placing their faith in the media, health entities, and politicians rather than in the Lord Jesus. One may argue, “seeing is believing”; but in this 21st century when we have powerful technologies to alter photos and footage and create deadly substances, shouldn’t that be reason enough to query what our eyes see and our ears hear?
Jeremiah 4:22 says:
“My people are foolish
and do not know me,” says the Lord.
“They are stupid children
who have no understanding.
They are clever enough at doing wrong,
but they have no idea how to do right!”
In the above passage, the Lord uses strong words to describe the state of His people because they have overlooked understanding and knowledge. By choosing to neglect discernment in doing right, the children of God have rendered themselves like fools. Thus, being so naive in life is extremely harmful and it is essential to emphasize that ignorance is ‘not’ bliss.
We are living in the last days, if we do not apply ourselves to wisdom now, we will easily be led astray by the deception of the anti-Christ. This message is not to discourage us, Christians, from watching the news or TV but instead to spur us to think, research, and analyze critically each information we receive. If we seek the truth, we shall find it, but if we don’t, it will not appear to us.
“The simple believes everything, but the prudent gives thought to his steps”—Proverbs 14:15