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It seems so strange for us in the West that people seek to murder the maximum number of total strangers (including innocent women and children) while blowing themselves up. Our western minds cannot grasp the total depravity of such actions. But we who grew up in a civilization grounded in the light of the Jewish and Christian scriptures perceive the world through different glasses. We have a sense of hope and we believe in the future. We love life and everything that it has to offer. We are optimistic of the future. Even those of us who were born into poor immigrant families hope to better ourselves and enjoy our time on this earth. We dream of marrying and having children, seeing them grow up to become doctors, lawyers and even politicians. These are the dreams of even the atheist and agnostic who are increasingly being churned up by our universities; institutions originally founded by pious men so that everyone could read the scriptures - now unfortunately, these are populated by atheist professors who think they are wise, but are fools. These are not my words, but those of the Creator of the Universe (Rom 1:22).


Most of us believe in a life after our time on earth is over. Jihadists hope to attain better life in the hereafter if they commit these heinous crimes. They have been convinced that the only assurance of entering into paradise if through this terrible act of self-sacrifice. It does not help that corrupt and morally bankrupt regimes (who are too cowardly to involve themselves in open war with the West) manipulate them to become their proxy swords and tanks; and bank roll these criminals by providing generous payouts to the families of these infamous murderers. Sadly, they are not going to paradise as they like to think, but instead to eternal damnation. How terrifying it must be to close your eyes in this world and instantly open them in the next and find yourself in the pit of hell. To find that everything you believed in was nothing but a lie and to know that those whom you love are also destined for this miserable place. But there is no way to go back and tell them. One thing is certain, whether we are believers in God or not, all of us will one day meet our Maker (Heb 9:27).


Pray for those who lost loved-ones in Brussels. Pray for those who are related to the bombers. Pray that you and your loved ones are not caught unaware when your time of death comes. Whether under tragic devised means as our brethren in Brussels or comfortably in your own bed, pray that you may be found innocent and worthy to enter the kingdom of heaven because our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ paid the penalty for you in the gruesome and cruel Cross of Calvary (Rom 6:23, Jhn 19). It is because of his sacrifice that we choose to love life and have it more abundantly (Jhn 10:10).

 

If a farmer plants seed corn he fully expects to reap corn! (Genesis 1:11,12)

What should a culture which plants seeds of violence, pornography, vulgarity, disrespect of authority, disdain for sacred traditions and institutions, intolerance and rejection of God and His word expect to reap?

The resent heartbreaking string of school shootings has been attibuted to guns, drugs, mental illness and poor parenting. But we have left one factor out...sin! We have abandoned that word! We have celebrated its many manifestations as liberation from our cultural conformity.

Entertainment and celebrity figures claim they have now taken the place of religion in american life and there is a seed of thruth in that!

But remember Galatians 6:7 " Be not deceived God is not mocked for whaterver a man sows that shall he also reap".

We have been warned!!

We hear the cries “Black Lives Matter”, “White Lives Matter” and “Police Lives Matter”.  All Lives Matter! We have politicized every aspect of life so that we are either for this group or the other, on one side of the issue or the other – Gender, Race, Politics.  We are a house divided against itself.  Maybe there is a transcending cry that needs to be heard: “All Life is Sacred!!” From the womb to the tomb, Creator God has put his seal of love on all of us and breathed the breath of life in all of us.  Until we can create life we have no right to take life.  Let’s stop desecrating the sacred gift of life.  In John 10:10 Jesus said: “…I am come that they might have life…” and that matters.

Often, the Bible speaks of God’s “better way” referring primarily to salvation (Heb 8:6) and heaven (Heb 11:16), but also interpersonal relationships (Phil 1:23). Recently, current events in Baltimore, Maryland; Ferguson, Missouri and Charleston, South Carolina have given the country and the world contrasting reactions to killing and violence. Actions in Maryland and Missouri demonstrated a natural, human instinct for retribution – “an eye for an eye” riots, burnings, looting and striking out. Actions in South Carolina, on the other hand, demonstrated an “unnatural” response to violence – prayer and forgiveness.

The aftermath in Maryland and Missouri is continuing unrest and no closure.

The aftermath in South Carolina is a peaceful, loving community which has found closure.

There is a better way for us as individuals, families, churches, communities and a nation to work out the big gnawing issues that continue to divide. It was visible to all the world in Charleston and in Oct 2006 in Nickel Mines (Lancaster County), Pennsylvania where an Amish schoolhouse was attacked and five young girls were murdered.

That way is the way of Jesus. 

Matthew 5:38 “Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth”

Matthew 5:44 “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”

It’s not a naïve way, it’s a better way.

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