Nearly all of us has seen the figurine of the 3 monkeys—See no evil, Hear no evil, Speak no evil. It seems to exemplify the attitude of many celebrities, politicians, athletes, and ordinary people when dealing with mistakes, embarrassing behavior and sin. Toby Keith, the country singer, had a hit with the song “Wish I didn’t know now what I didn’t know then.” There are at least 3 wrong types of attitudes that allow people to “move on” and distance themselves from bad behavior and sin—Justify it, Ignore it and Deny it.
Truthfully, it is nearly impossible to unsee, unhear, unspeak or undo the past. Humans have tried different methods of avoidance such as monasteries, convents, and caves to try to keep from committing sin in the first place. But monks, nuns and hermits still have to deal with their thoughts of the past.
In today’s society it is harder and harder to avoid seeing and hearing evil on a daily basis. Speaking evil is more of a personal decision yet hard to suppress. (Js 3:6-12) Rather than trying to repair the past we can replace it.
The Christian RX for these 3 evils is a proactive course. We have to acknowledge the sin, have it forgiven and then adopt the new mind and new life spoken of by the apostle Paul. (Rom 12:2) Our thoughts should now be on the qualities of: truth, nobility, right, purity, loveliness, whatever is admirable, excellence and praiseworthiness. (Php 4:8-9) We no longer have to dwell on our old mistakes and sins because God doesn’t. (Jer. 31:34) (Heb 8:12) No more justification that “Everybody does it” or “It’s not as bad as what others do.” No more claiming it never happened or completely ignoring it. We don’t have to force the toothpaste back into the old tube, we now have a new tube and can MOVE ON.