Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Stop the Violence?

It is hard not to feel pain when listening to reports from Arizona about a gunman who took the life of six people and wounded 15 others. Among the victims was a nine-year-old girl who was born on 9-11 and wanted to attend the town hall meeting to meet her Congresswoman. Christina-Taylor Green was well on her way to becoming someone involved in politics, someone who would help lessen the problems of the world, someone who cared. Will you join me in prayer for her and the other victims of this latest tragedy?

After the shooting I listened to the local news report. There were four shootings and one case of reported arson. I did a quick web search throughout the United States and Canada and found numerous instances of shootings and other acts of violence. Teachers report how school children are being bullied; news reports bombard us with acts of violence, and flag-draped coffins continue to be sent home from the war's front. People who used to wave friendly greetings to each other on the highway now see their wave returned with only one finger. Kids who got in trouble and used to lament that their parents would "be mad at them" are now telling their friends they will "be killed." We live in a violent society, and it appears the violence is only increasing.

Some have speculated that part of the growing trend in violence is the enormous popularity of graphically violent video games. Some have postulated it's the weak global economic situation that has created tensions significant enough to spawn violence. Some have suggested that inflammatory political tactics and polices have contributed to the spike in violence. Some conclude the violence stems from the ongoing war on terror and those religious zealots who instigate others toward acting on their hatreds.

While it's easy to say a combination of all these influences makes for a violent society, I offer another idea: could it be the world is irretrievably lost and the above instances simply reflect that grave condition? It doesn't take a university-trained sociologist to tell us the world has got problems -- big problems. While some of our global malaise is due to tanking economies and ignorant political rhetoric and religious fanaticism and yes, even video game violence, those are merely surface tumors on the face of society.

The real cancer goes to the bone or -- to the soul -- in our case: sin. The world is lost and in love with the very enemy who is hell bent to destroy it: Satan. What a sorry, miserable state of affairs.

And so it would be without help from above. "But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ" (1 Corinthians 15:57).

Men, is it time for us to band together and study the Prince of Peace and His plan for our lives? Is it time for us to join together and love God and love our neighbor as ourselves?

What do you think? Is it time?

1 comment :

Bill said...

Yes, the story of Christina-Taylor Green's life and subsequent death brought me to tears. It is truly heartbreaking the effect sin has in our world. Although I don't believe in praying for those souls that have departed this earth I do pray this young life will be an example to others of the good the Lord desires us to strive for in this world. And yes, we do need to be deeper in the Word, seeking His will for us on this side of eternity!