I am dismayed by the litigious world that we live in. I know of no better example of our society’s misplaced responsibility than the absurd labels manufacturers place on their products in hopes of avoiding a lawsuit. I am inclined to think that these labels are necessary for a special type of consumer.
Here are a few that made me laugh from the website:
Things People Said: Warning Labels.
“Eating rocks may lead to broken teeth.”
On a novelty rock garden set called “Popcorn Rock.”
“Caution: Hot beverages are hot!”
On a coffee cup.
“Do not eat toner.”
On a toner cartridge for a laser printer.
“Do not drive with sunshield in place.”
On a cardboard sunshield that keeps the sun off the dashboard.
“This product not intended for use as a dental drill.”
On an electric rotary tool.
“Recycled flush water unsafe for drinking.”
On a toilet at a public sports facility in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
“For external use only!”
On a curling iron.
“Warning: knives are sharp!”
On the packaging of a sharpening stone.
“Remove plastic before eating.”
On the wrapper of a Fruit Roll-Up snack.
“Turn off motor before using this product.”
On the packaging for a chain saw file,
used to sharpen the cutting teeth on the chain.
The sad reality is that these labels are needed. People will do stupid things because they think they know best. Their foolishness will cause them to ignore the obvious.
I want to believe that these warning labels for the obvious are not necessary for me but then I read the Bible. I read of Moses’ warnings to God’s chosen people and they read like warning labels for the obvious.
And if you faithfully obey the voice of the Lord your God, being careful to do all his commandments that I command you today, the Lord your God will set you high above the nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, if you obey the voice of the Lord your God. (Deuteronomy 28:1-2)
If you are not careful to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that you may fear this glorious and awesome name, the Lord your God, then the Lord will bring on you and your offspring extraordinary afflictions, afflictions severe and lasting, and sicknesses grievous and lasting. (Deuteronomy 28:1-2)
These warnings of the Bible are pretty simple. God, Creator of heaven and earth, will be for those who love and follow Him with their whole heart. Those who are in Christ will know Him as Father and be adopted as children of God. He will grant upon them love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control, and eternal life.
However, it is going to go bad for those who refuse to love and obey the One, who holds the stars in place. God’s wrath will fall on those who stubbornly cling to their rebellion against the King of kings. God will discipline those who are His, to bring them back into a right relationship with Him as any loving parent will discipline their child.
I read these warnings and they seem so obvious – it is better to be with God than against Him. Yet…
How many times do we continue to live in disobedience?
That is like trying to sharpen a chainsaw without turning the motor off.
How many seasons have passed without opening the Bible or kneeling prayer?
That is like trying to get nutrition from a snack pack without opening the wrapper.
How regularly is the filth of entertainment consumed?
That is like drinking recycled flush water from a toilet and not expecting to get sick.
How eagerly is a conversation turned to gossip?
That is like pouring a cup of coffee on our lap and being shocked that we get burned.
How long is anxiety coddled?
That is like grinding our teeth away on rocks and hoping they don’t break.
How casually are the passions of lust titillated?
That is like juggling knives without being lacerated.
We often deny the obvious warnings of God because we think we know better. However, our rejection of God’s warnings simply proves that we are not any wiser than the intended audience of manufactures’ most ridiculous product warning labels.
God warns us for our good and because He loves us. Let us not foolishly ignore the common sense warning of the obvious – it is better to be with God than against Him.