Las Vegas

October 6, 2017

I feel a need to make some comment on the tragedy in Las Vegas this past week. I apologize in advance that I will likely not shed any light on this heartbreaking disaster.  I am deeply grieved for the families and the innocent victims of the mad man who shot, injured and killed so many.  My first response is not to blame anyone but the shooter.  I have no desire to condemn the “country western fans who voted for Trump so I have no sympathy for them” as was stated by a lawyer for CBS.  She has since been fired.  What a moron.  Nor do I have any idea what caused this man to act as he did.  But I do know this:  As Christians most of us believe that we are born in sin.  Our nature is one of brokenness and fallenness.  We sin because we are sin. Christians who would argue that humanity is basically “good” are blind or out of their mind or both.  And they clearly have not read several Bible passages… namely:

Romans 5: 12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—

13 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come.

15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!

18 Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.

20 The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, 21 so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Mark 10:18  “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone.

Psalm 51:5  Indeed, I was born guilty, a sinner when my mother conceived me.

Beginning in the 2nd century The Christian Church has embraced the theology of “original sin,” i.e., we are born in sin and we are sin.  So on a larger scale, why did this man commit this heinous act?  Because he was broken… just like all of us.  Why, in particular, he chose to act this way?  I have no idea.

People do bad things because humanity is bad. Some do worse things than others. There is not enough money or resources on the planet to change that reality.  Wars will continue.  Murder will continue.  Abuse will continue.  Theft will continue.  Unfaithfulness will continue.  Racism will continue.  Hate toward fellow human beings will continue.  Envy will continue.  Etc.…  That being said, we can be declared righteous through Jesus… but ONLY through Jesus.  And even then our old self continues to hang around and cause sinful havoc.

Allow me to say something about guns and politicians. First of all, I see absolutely NO REASON for citizens to have automatic weapons.  None.  Not for a second.  I have heard 2nd amendment people argue like adolescent boys over our “rights” but I am not convinced.  Why?  For this reason.  If we are going to argue that the 2nd amendment protects our rights to own weapons… then why can’t I have a rocket launcher?  Or a bazooka?  Or a case of grenades?  Or, heck… why not a nuclear weapon?  Why are those not protected?  I’m assuming they are not protected because they are dangerous.  Um… having guns that can kill loads of people in a VERY short period of time seems kind of dangerous too.  And I am sick to death that the Republican Party continues to kowtow to the NRA!  Just as I am sick to death of the Democrats doing the same with Planned Parenthood!  This political jargon where the Left blames the Right for having blood on their hands while not embracing their own guilt over 60 million plus aborted babies makes no sense.  And the sad part?  I can already hear the comments you on the Right and Left are making to justify your own political positions!

Once again, I am not speaking to the World. I expect nothing less than total self-absorption from them.  But for Believers?  We need to repent!  Repent that we have allowed ourselves to get so caught up in the politics of the World that we have forgotten the Truth of Jesus Christ.  We are too quick to say: “I am so sorry for the families, now let’s talk about politics and policies.”

I just read this quote last night: “This is our predicament.  Over and over again, we lose sight of what is important and what isn’t.”  -Epictetus AMEN!!

For believers… Jesus is of primary importance. Not the Republicans.  Not the Democrats.  Not the NRA.  Not Planned Parenthood.  Not our own agendas.  Can we start acting like Jesus is of foremost importance?  Can we?  No, I didn’t think so.

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4 thoughts on “Las Vegas

  1. Bill,
    First, we grieve over the loss of life. Even if there was some glaring reason to point to, it would make no sense aside from sin. And I’ll come back to that point in a moment.
    Second, I completely agree with you regarding the politics and policies. Neither side listens to their own agenda, let alone listening to those they oppose.
    Here is where I may differ from your point of view regarding the first point, just slightly. Although, I agree with your assertion that we are born to sin, clothed in sin, drenched in our own vileness (ok, maybe I’m over-working your point); we are also made in the image of God and the scriptures speak volumes of our own holiness and righteousness in light of our Redeemer’s love.
    It’s a dichotomy that humanity must grapple with and something we must strive to work towards (the good, not the bad). The problem I have is the Paul speech – “I’m a horrible creature doing what I do not wish to do because of the desires of the flesh” before he gives the BUT speech. We should not use our “born to sin” as an excuse for terrible human behavior.

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