Columbine (1999), Virginia Tech (2007), Sandy Hook (2012), and now Oregon! What is going on? Schools that used to be safe places for learning have now become crime scenes for murder and bloodshed. Why is this happening? Is it about gun control, mental illness, media glamorization, or just needing more metal detectors? What is the solution? Well here is what God has to say…
Mark 7:20-23…“What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.”
Scripture is very clear that what we “do” is based on how we think and the perspectives we hold. In other words, sinful behavior is a reflection of sinful thinking. For decades, we’ve seen this play out both at home and around the world. Whether it’s murder and genocide in other countries or drive-by shootings and an Oklahoma City bombing here at home, these tragedies originate from personal inner turmoil and sinful thinking.
Now, as a culture, we’ve tried our best to contain and protect against these terrible occurrences. We’ve established new laws, increased law enforcement, and even built more prisons. As a result, today we have more jails and prisons than we do accredited colleges and universities. Yet, with this latest shooting in Oregon, the situation doesn’t seem to be getting better. Why?
Although some may not want to hear the “real” answer, here it is from God’s perspective…. The problem isn’t legal, it’s spiritual!
We are all born with a sinful condition and laws can only try to “contain” it, but they will never change it. The only one that can do that is God. The big problem today is that we as a culture, community, and individuals have been increasingly walking away from God. We’ve been systematically removing Him from our daily lives (i.e., schools, governing institutions, etc.). When this happens, our sinful condition goes unchecked, selfish motives grow and flourish, and our care for life and others is diminished The impact starts small but quickly escalates and becomes systemic which is what we see happening today.
Yes, policies, laws, and law enforcement will always be a necessary and important part of governing, but there is much more to the equation when it comes to the solution. That is why Jesus came to solve our sinful condition on the cross (see my blog “Hell No”).
So as the political debates ramp up and we scramble to look for answers to these tragic events, let’s not overlook the fact that we have been increasingly excluding the ultimate solution to our problem, God! It’s time we take a hard look at the results of the last 20 years of godless decision-making in our country and do more pointing back to Jesus and His word. It’s never too late! The Lord will always respond to those who humbly seek Him.
Psalm 51:10 – Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.
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