The World of Illusions
Undoubtedly, 2020 has been quite a fascinating year. Like the many facets of a diamond, there is a seemingly endless nuance to the perplexities which comprise 2020. What should one focus on when trying to summarize such an exquisite oddity as 2020 in but a few short words? Should I take my aim at this thing called “Coronavirus” which has caused such controversy and disturbance? Should I set my sights on the political realm and the dismal calamity which was the 2020 season of politics? Possibly, I should lock in on the staunch bravery of faithful pastors who stood against the ever-encroaching tide of tyranny? Perhaps . . . just maybe there is an underlying factor which could demonstrate the success of those who have stood strong on the one hand and the folly of many on the other hand during this year. I believe there is such a thing, and it is the difference between living according to illusions versus the truth.
Illusion is quite an interesting word. Webster’s 1828 American Dictionary defines it as follows, “Deceptive appearance; false show, by which a person is or may be deceived, or his expectations disappointed; mockery.”1 An illusion is all about deception. The goal is to trick someone into thinking reality is something which it in all actuality it is not. A magician is skilled in the art of illusion and can appear to cut a human being in half while in all reality never even harming a hair on their head. Illusions for the sake of entertainment can be quite amusing. However, when people begin to base their lives on the illusionary instead of reality the results are utterly catastrophic.
A Most Fascinating Lesson
What does this have to do with 2020 and how am I going to tie illusions into a summary of the year? Here’s an example of what I am referencing. My friend, consider what we can learn together from the lesson that the great states of Florida and California have to teach us. Bear with me for a second as I lay out some statistical facts. As of 2019, the population of the state of Florida is roughly 21.48 million people and even larger is the population of California which is 39.5 million.3
Now, according to the mainstream statistics, which I do believe are largely inflated, the state of California has had 2,155,976 cases of COVID and 24,284 total deaths.4 Florida has had 1,280,177 cases with 21,309 total deaths listed.5 Now, if we are going to do fair statistical analysis, as we must, then we have to factor in the population differences between the two states. So, taking the number of cases divided by the total population of each state we can begin to get some detailed data for us to consider. A little over 5.45% of the state of California has contracted the virus based on the aforementioned statistics whereas 5.95% of the state of Florida has gotten the virus, notice how those numbers are not only in the same ballpark but actually in the same dugout of the same ballpark. California has listed .06% of its population to have passed away as a result of the virus and .09% of Florida. So, what we see is the statistics are about the same for each state thus far. There is no real discernable difference between the overall statistics of the two states.
A deeper look at the current increase of statistics reveals a more intriguing story though. On December 28, 2020 California increased their case load by 33,170.6 That statement means a total of .08% of the state is said to have contracted Coronavirus on the 28th. In comparison, Florida had only 8,198 new cases on the 28th.7 That number consists of about .03% of the state. What we do see is that now the number of cases in Florida is growing substantially less than California which is a trend that has occurred for a while. If you follow the news you know that Florida has been one of the more open states and California has been in lockdown mode. The result is that Florida has actually performed better in the long-run since, according to statistics, they are not developing nearly the amount of cases California is currently.
This fact means that to act as though lockdowns help control the virus is to live in the realm of the illusory instead of in reality. Lockdowns have other detrimental effects such as damaging businesses and devastating the livelihoods of individuals while not helping the virus whatsoever. Another impact is the devastating mental effect of locking humans up via the Coronavirus mandates.8Consequently, those who impose and support lockdowns are living in the illusions of their minds and not upon objective reality. The illusion is that they believe they are doing that which is good while in reality causing great harm for absolutely no discernable benefit based upon their own statistics.
2020 The Year of the Illusory
Now, this post is not about Coronavirus, that was just my example to show how living in reality instead of the imaginative world has real impact on people’s lives. 2020, in my estimation, has been marked by the willingness of people to live in the land of magical illusions, hopeful fancies, and dreams of their minds all of which do not hold water when placed in the real world. Those who have continued to live in the world of truth need to be applauded because they have stood strong. The majority of folks who have lived in illusions need to recognize this fact and come back to the truth. All of this is why I say the difference between illusion and reality is perhaps the best way to summarize 2020.
The King of Truth
The big question we are all wondering at this point is which group is going to take over. Are we going to have people who are living according to their own imaginations in the leadership of society or are those who live according to reality going to reign? The good thing is that dispute has already been settled. Jesus Christ has all authority in heaven and on earth (Matthew 28:18). He will not buy into the deceit of demons or the illusions of man. Our King is in full knowledge of truth and reality for He Himself is truth. Therefore, we as His followers must also charge ahead at the command of our King’s edict to bring His truth to bear in every realm.
Here is the thing about illusions, they do not last. The early church was commanded by the authorities of their day to bow to Caesar as Lord, they refused the illusion and proclaimed the reality that Jesus Christ alone is Lord. Rome has fallen, Caesar is gone, the church is still here and Jesus Christ is reigning as Lord. Reality conquered the illusion which passed away. These truths should give us great hope that even though many a person has dove into the pool of illusion, we yet are still people of the truth as Christians. Our job is to reject the fake wisdom this world offers us and to have our minds saturated in the Word of our God. 2020 was the year of illusion, may 2021 be the year of truth. May it be the year where the people of God herald His truth to a lost world in need of salvation!
P.S. Just to be clear, let me reiterate that I do not believe the mainstream statistics regarding Coronavirus are accurate. In this article, I was just using the mainstream data to show that even by their own standards the mainstream ideas regarding lockdowns do not work in light of reality.