The Horror of Mass Shootings and the Pervasiveness of Sin

In the late 19th, with the advent of Darwin’s “The Origin of the Species,” in which he details his views on how species evolve. At the same time the world’s philosophers were on the cusp of “The Age of Enlightenment,” which could also be known as the age of reason and science.

The intellectual community, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, began to see itself as having evolved much like Darwin’s theory about the species of this planet. The intellectuals of that era began to think and believe that human kind had evolved so much that war was no a possibility. We would solve all future conflicts with our minds and our reason.

Then low and behold WWI occurred. Not only hadn’t we “evolved” from our base nature’s instinctive descent into violence when we don’t get what we want, but we had advanced so much technologically that we now had ways to kill people in the millions. The bloodshed in WWI (over 20 million civilians and soldiers) was so large that it boggled the minds of people living in that era. And the world didn’t even have time to catch its breath before we came face to face with the over 40 million people killed in WWII.

I mention these wars because I want to show the folly of thinking that science and reason can change the base nature of human beings. We are still sinful and broken people without Jesus.

In the last 30 days we have had four senseless mass shootings and we are shocked and outraged and so we should be. But the church doesn’t seem to see its role in combating these horrific acts.

We show solidarity with the victims and their families, and that is a good thing. We write our Representatives and Senators, and demand something be done.

But where is the church’s recognition of the role that sin and brokenness play in these events? Where is our call for revival and awakening.

I define revival as call for the people of the church to “wake up” and come back to Jesus. Awakening is among those who don’t know Jesus to come to know Him.

At the root of all of these tragedies from World Wars to the horrific murder of people is sin. The church has been entrusted with the remedy for sin, a life transformed by the surrender of that life to Jesus Christ.

Yes as Christians we should mourn with those who have lost loved ones in these tragedies, and I do. And yes I recognize the role that mental health plays in many of these acts of violence, but the church needs to recognize the role that sin plays in all of this.

Jesus came to destroy sin’s power over us. His death and resurrection was He remedy for the disease of sin. It is the only true remedy.

I sometimes wonder if the church has forgotten or worse still no longer believes in this its primary mission. That we have somehow become evolved to the point where the cross is merely an old symbol from days gone by when we were a less sophisticated people.

Today I hear the call of Jesus to come back to our roots. To be the church that He created by His death and resurrection. Reclaim our role in this world. As Paul said so well;

18For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise;
the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”

I don’t have the intellect of the great minds who wrestle with the great problems of this planet, but I have the cross of Jesus. And I will continue to preach that cross for it is the power of God.

I will always be an advocate for taking the stigma away from people getting mental health treatment. But I will never forget that my primary responsibility as well as the church’s is to work for the health of the human soul. And until that soul knows Jesus Christ it will remain a soul that is in need of healing.

Let’s not neglect the role that the church has to play in the world; it’s bigger than we think. We are called reach new people with the life transforming message of the cross of Jesus. Let’s not be ashamed of that message

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