When There Was No Crime
CAN you imagine a world without crime? Probably not if you have read news reports like the one that appeared in the German daily Süddeutsche Zeitung: “Crime experts are talking about a new dimension to crime. Their language is full of for[e]boding and the picture they paint is apocalyptic.”
According to a 1995 survey of thousands of Europeans, almost everyone worries about being victimized by crime. In Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, Russia, and the United Kingdom, crime is at the top of the list of what people fear most. Fear of crime was rated second in Denmark, Finland, and Switzerland and third in France, Greece, and Italy. Of the 12 nations surveyed, only Spain did not list crime among the top three reasons for fear.
The crime rate has risen dramatically in Eastern Europe in the past seven years. In a number of these countries, the increase has been between 50 and 100 percent, whereas in the other countries, it even ranges from 193 to 401 percent!
Yet, at one time, there was a crime-free world. When was that, and how was that world ruined?
Where Did Crime Originate?
Crime, defined as “a gross violation of law,” had its origin in the spirit realm. The first humans, Adam and Eve, were not created with criminal tendencies, nor were they wholly responsible for the introduction of crime into human society. A perfect spirit son of God allowed wrong thoughts to take root in his heart, which, when nourished, gave birth to crime. That one was responsible for corrupting the original crime-free world. By breaking God’s law, he made himself a criminal, and he is identified in the Bible as Satan the Devil.—James 1:13-15; Revelation 12:9.
Having embarked upon a course of opposition to God in the invisible heavens, Satan was determined to spread his criminal ways to humans on earth. The Bible account of how the Devil did this is short and simple, but factual. (Genesis, chapters 2-4) Adam and Eve, misguided by this wily, superhuman criminal, refused to abide by God’s standards. They became criminals by disobeying God. Later, they no doubt recoiled in horror when their firstborn son, Cain, went so far as to rob his brother Abel of his most precious possession, life itself!
Thus, of the first four people to inhabit the earth, three turned out to be criminals. Adam, Eve, and Cain thereby forfeited their opportunity to live in a crime-free world. Why, after all this time, can we be sure such a world is now at hand?