Early Reformation Day Quiz: Can you name the man in this picture?
(Note the Stealth bomber bolo tie and unmistakable Halloween-themed Jack T. Chick tract)
Here at Mockingbird, we’re always looking for people, places, and cultural artifacts “out there” that reflect the historic truths of the Christian message (helpfully articulated by the Reformers we celebrate every October 31). One such artifact is this quote from the above-pictured former frontman of the super-important punk band, the Dead Kennedys, Jello Biafra:

“For every prohibition you create

you also create an underground.”

A major theme here at Mockingbird is the idea that human behavior does not respond well to demand. “Stop that!” “Don’t do that!” “Make good choices.” In fact, demand to change often provokes revolt, resistance, and rebellion. At best we get reluctant compliance with a huge steaming side helping of subterranean resentment. St. Paul noted this phenomenon in several of his letters to 1st century churches (letters that now make up a major chunk of the New Testament). He wrote to the Romans: “The Law [God's Law for how to behave rightly] came in to increase the trespass” (Romans 5:20). Paul writes about hearing the commandment “Do not covet” and how he was immediately filled with all kinds of covetous desires.

So if St. Paul and Jello are right that demand doesn’t create action (but reaction), that prohibition creates an underground, what does change people?