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Fallible Human Leaders

When Icarus flew too close to the sun, his wax wings melted, and he plunged to his death. So goes the classic myth, which has been used since antiquity to remind the young and the reckless not to become too ambitious lest they fall to their ultimate demise. Ultimately, the purpose of this story is to impart humility to its listeners.

This Greek myth is paralleled by the wisdom preached within the Bible, which commands Christians to “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:6-7).

Humility is a crucial value that is supported by Biblical authority, not just in terms of age and wisdom but also in terms of our comparative insignificance next to God.

This is evident in the innate fallibility of human beings. While we typically think about human fallibility in the context of sin, it is also evident in the simple failures in human decision-making that have negative impacts on large numbers of human beings.

This was illustrated in the revelation that President Joe Biden kept documents with classification markings in an unsecured office space. [1]

As far as the public knows, none of the information contained in these documents had negative consequences for the American people. Nonetheless, this incident did not inspire any confidence.

The White House’s damage control on the first incident failed spectacularly “when Americans learned that a second batch of classified material, also dating to Biden’s time as vice president, had been found in search of his home in Delaware. This detail was communicated to the Justice Department on December 20. And yet the White House didn’t disclose that this week [the week of January 9-14] when it spoke about the initial documents found last year in an office Biden previously used at the Penn-Biden center in Washington. This made it look like it was willing to come clean to the DOJ but not the public.” [3]

The problem with human beings holding a high-stakes position of leadership, like that of President (and then Vice President) Biden, is that it presents many opportunities for damaging and sometimes catastrophic failures. This fact should serve as a reminder that we must put our faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, not in human political leaders.

This story illustrates exactly why Christians turn to Christ as their infallible king and leader. Echoes of this are visible in the history of the word “gospel,” which referred to “good news,”specifically in the context of good news about a new king. [2]

God’s plan is not only free from error, but it is also intended to undo the devastating human error that introduced sin and death into the world. As 2 Corinthians 5:21 teaches, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”

We should take this story as yet another reminder that our ultimate faith belongs in Christ, our Lord and Savior, not the President, or any other flawed human being.

Foundations of Truth hereby waives all claim of copyright (economic and moral) in this work and immediately places it in the public domain; it may be used, published, edited, and distributed in any manner whatsoever without any attribution or notice to Foundations of Truth.


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