One cannot help but weep over the senseless murders and hurt of innocent people around the world. So many hearts have needlessly been broken, with countless numbers of tears shed. Many tears have been shed with the families and victims, and many prayers have been offered to God on their behalf.
As this writer sat in a hospital waiting room on Friday, May 18, 2018, breaking news flashed across a TV screen of the Santa Fe, Texas, high school shootings. Ten (10) were reported killed and ten (10) injured that day. News and comments were heard by many. The next morning brought news of shootings at a school in Georgia, following an event. As usual, TV hosts, guests, and others, talked about why these things are happening, and how and what to do to stop the madness. During this time reports of other evils ran across the bottom of the picture. For example, there were reports of priests allegedly abusing young children and others covering it up. A mother was accused of attempting to kill her baby by putting drugs in the formula given to it. A politician was accused of sex crimes. On and on went the reports.
It has been interesting to hear the same debates on the same subjects, using almost identical words pro and con. Some call for stricter gun control, and some even call for the elimination of guns. Others plead for the second amendment, giving them the right to bear arms. So many things are put on the table as solutions to these senseless acts, generally called madness. These atrocious acts ought to be called what they are, “works of the flesh” (Galatians 5:19-21), “unrighteous” acts (1 Corinthians 6:9-11), “a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness…murder….” (Romans 1:28, 29). Romans 1:15-18 describe such persons, saying, “Their feet are swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of God before their eyes.” By the way, those who do these things, and do not repent, “shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.” (Revelation 21:8; Acts 17:30, 31). There is a way to end all of this, but those who have control of the microphones and their guests seem reluctant to give the only solution to the problem. Rather, they steer clear of the way out of this bloody massacre. This writer wrote and printed a tract on this subject following the many other murders after the twin towers, which is also available on pilgrimbiblestudy.com, where these few thoughts may also be viewed.
First, Jesus is “The Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6). There will only be peace when people follow Jesus. Any departure from Him only brings division and more hurt. The angels in announcing the birth of Jesus, proclaimed, “on earth peace, good will toward man.” (Luke 2:8-20, especially, verse 14). However, God also knew that His sending Jesus with His message would result in those who rejected Him fighting those who followed Him. Cf. Matthew 7:13, 14; 26:3-5, 50, 55, 57-75; 27:1ff. These, and many more verses which could be cited, are the reasons for the words of Jesus in Matthew 10:34, “I came not to send peace, but a sword.” Read verses 32-42. To enjoy true and lasting peace, heed Jesus, who said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6), and, “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12). Sadly, in spite of all Jesus said, most reject His way. (Matthew 7:13, 14). Why not try it? You have tried unsuccessfully so many other ways.
Second, please consider the teachings of Jesus, which will end the heartaches caused by sinfulness, unrighteous and atrocious deeds. Jesus taught, “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.” (Matthew 7: 12). This golden rule taught to and obeyed by all would end all strife, hatred, bitterness, and evil actions! Jesus also calls for everyone to be filled with the same love for others that they have for themselves, including enemies. (Matthew 5:43-47; 19:19). True love is described in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, “Charity suffereth long, and is kind…envieth not…vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up. Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth.” Romans 12 calls Christians to be holy, have renewed minds, think soberly, be united, show mercy with cheerfulness, have pure love, hating evil, cleaving to good, serving the Lord, rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing instant in prayer, helping saints, hospitable, blessing persecutors, rather than cursing them, rejoicing or weeping with those who rejoice or weep, being of the same mind toward others, not looking down on others, not proud, doing unto others as they do unto you, providing things honestly, seeking to live peaceably with all, not taking vengeance, helping even enemies, overcoming evil with good. Chapter 13 calls upon all to obey the law. Only in matters where the law of the land contradicts God’s law should the Christian choose to obey God over the laws of man. (Acts 5:29).
There are so many other things Jesus taught which would bring an abrupt end to the killings, murders, and hurt being experiences daily around the world. Illicit use of drugs of whatever nature, whether pills, powder, alcohol, etc., are the result of many non-premeditated deaths daily, such as, automobile accidents, physical abuse, and the like. Hate, wrath, malice, and the like, cause many pre-meditated murders daily in this society. The love of the world or sinful things (1 John 2:15-17) frequently brings about much heartache to many. Attire and/or indecent exposure contribute to lust and/or evil actions. (2 Samuel 11:1ff; Matthew 5:27, 28). So much more could be listed. However, would to God every person in the world were a FAITHFUL child of God and follower of Jesus. Using the talented singer, Louis Armstrong’s song, WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD we could have. Imagine not having to worry about being robbed, mugged, murdered, or having to place burglar bars on your doors and windows, no more entry locks, the end of broken homes, no more divorce, etc., etc., etc…..
Some object, saying, “I know some, or have heard of Christians doing awful things.” True, but these are UNFAITHFUL children of God, hypocrites. Do not judge the Christ by those who are not true to Him. Rather, make righteous judgments. (John 7:24; Matthew 7:15-23). When people truly follow Jesus, they will produce good fruits. (Galatians 5:22-26; Philippians 4:8; etc.). “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” (Matthew 6:24). This is true, whether it be the mammon (money) of this verse, Satan (Matthew 4:1-11), or any other person or thing. Faithful people are doing the things the people did whom Jesus called to life eternal. (Matthew 25:34-40, 46).
Money does not cause greed, fraudulent actions, and such like; people do. Lay any amount of money on a table, and it will never hurt anyone. Likewise, trucks, cars, and other means of transportation, do no harm to others; inattentive, intoxicated, evil people use them to inflict death and/or hurt. Knives, guns, poison, and such like, are inanimate things, until and unless used by sinful people to inflict hurt and death. One could eliminate any and all of these things, and evil people would still find ways to perform their evil and destructful deeds. Minds must be changed, whether they are mentally unstable or outright evil.
Lastly, some have mistakenly called upon the President, Senate, House, and others to “do something.” They need to do their work. However, part of the blame for these senseless and shameless acts lies in the lap of each and every person. May all come to realize that the solution to this and all problems can be solved in FAITHFUL OBEDIENCE TO JESUS. Teach your children to follow Jesus faithfully. TAKE them to Bible study and Worship. Teach them how Jesus wants them to live. Teach them how to act when others do not treat them well. OR, continue on the same road, with the same dialogue, reaping the same results. Jesus is the answer to murder and hurt. Choose carefully and properly!