Tragedy in America
Many of us awoke Monday morning in shock over the details of a shooting in Las Vegas. It was hard to fathom that one man from a hotel room had many guns, killing nearly 60 individuals and wounding over 500. It has been labeled as the deadliest shooting spree in modern American history. As the news continued to show images and more details came to light throughout the week, I spent a lot of time thinking about what to say in this article. While these are in no way all of my thoughts, here are some reflections that I pray cause us to take pause and consider.
The first thing we must understand is that this world is full of evil. Here are five reasons we see evil in this world as shared in the article: “If there is A God, why is there so much evil in the world”.
- Satan is the god of this world. He brings the death and destruction, not God (2 Cor. 4:4; John 10:10; 1 John 3:8).
- Man chooses to harm his fellow man. We all have a free will to obey God and be blessed or to reject God and be cursed. It’s our choice (Deut. 30:19; Matt. 13:15; Job 36:11; 1 John 3:22).
- What a man sows he will reap (Gal. 6:7; Pr. 12:14; Pr. 22:8).
- There is a law of sin and death, and it operates just like the law of gravity (Rom. 8:2; Rom. 7:23-25; James 1:15; Pr. 13:21).
- The earth itself rebels against sin (Ps. 68:6; Lev. 18:25; 1 Chron. 16:30; Ps. 67:5-6; Rom. 8:22).
The second thing we must understand is that God is our refuge and strength. As I drove into the office on Monday, God gave me Psalm 46. Allow me to share a few verses from that psalm.
- “God is our refuge and our strength, an ever present help in trouble.” (vs. 1)
- “The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.” (vs. 7)
- “He says, be still and know that I am God.” (vs. 10)
Third, Jesus is the only Hope for our world. We cannot legislate morality or surrender our life and hide in fear. Instead, we, the church of Jesus Christ, must be the voice of hope. It is only through the message of the Gospel and through the name of Jesus that evil must flee. Only when people are transformed by the grace, mercy and power of Christ will we see change in our culture. This truth points directly to our mission. God has allowed us to be here for such a time as this to Win, Build and send disciples of Jesus Christ. Who are you pouring into? Our country is on edge and looking for real answers. We have the only answer this world needs: JESUS CHRIST!
Finally, when evil becomes evident and the storms come, God is there! How many news stories of heroism, faith, compassion and miracles do we have to see before we stop getting on the “If your God is real, why do bad things happen” bandwagon? Scripture does not teach that God prevents all tragedy, but instead tells us that He is in the valley of death with us. Scripture does not teach that bad things do not happen, but instead that He will never leave us or forsake us. Scripture says that WHEN THE STORMS COME He will be our rock and foundation as long as we know and put into practice His Word. The promise of Scripture is that it will rain on the just and unjust alike; however, Christ is our shelter in the storm.
Our country is hurting. Perhaps your faith is exactly what someone in your life needs “for such a time as this”.