Shootings are increasing and their randomness, lack of motive, or trivial motives are growing more shocking daily. We have:
Professors shooting colleagues
According to a faculty member, the professor had applied for tenure, been turned down, and appealed the decision. She learned on Friday that she had been denied once again. Officials said the dead were all biology professors, G. K. Podila, the department’s chairman; Maria Ragland Davis; and Adriel D. Johnson Sr. Two other biology professors, Luis Rogelio Cruz-Vera and Joseph G. Leahy, as well as a professor’s assistant, Stephanie Monticciolo, are at Huntsville Hospital in conditions ranging from stable to critical. The shooting came just a week after a middle school student near Huntsville shot and killed a classmate.
Elementary Teachers shooting Administrators
A fourth grade teacher at Inskip Elementary School (TN) is charged Wednesday with the shootings of the principal and assistant principal at the school. Foster entered the office at Inskip Elementary School and lured the victims, Elisa Luna and Amy Brace, into the principal’s office,” the police complaint states. “(Foster) then shot victim Elisa luna multiple times at close range…and shot victim Amy Brace multiple times at close range…”
Restaurant-goers shooting patrons
Police say a man opened fire inside a Gresham (OR) restaurant, killing one person and wounding two other before killing himself.
Children shooting parents
A 12–year old Iowa boy is charged with killing his stepfather and injuring his half sister. Neighbor and good family friend, Candy Burmeister, describes the Peek family as, “salt of the earth.” She says the parents raised their children with strong morals and kindness. Police are trying to piece together what led to the shooting.
Teens shooting children
Richmond (CA) police have arrested a 17-year-old boy on suspicion of shooting a toddler riding in a car with her father. Sgt. Bisa French says the shooter did not know the girl or her father when he shot into the moving car while on foot.
Clients attacking their hairdresser
An Athens (GA) woman attacked another woman Tuesday morning because she was upset over how the victim styled her hair, Athens-Clarke police said. … The victim tried to call police, but Fleming ripped a cell phone from a rope around the victim’s neck and drove away, police said.
Paul wrote in no uncertain terms to Timothy about the state of affairs in the last days. He said they would be “perilous.” (KJV) “For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” (2 Timothy 3:2-5)
When I read these verses I think of national peril, such as America is in now being an ever-growing economic and military target, but I also think of individual peril. It’s perilous for individuals to simply go about their daily business. It’s perilous to drive an ice cream truck, go to a restaurant, have a faculty meeting, teach in a school. It’s perilous to cut hair, to dwell in your home, to ride in a car with your baby.
Making the days even more perilous than the shootings’ penetration into daily lives are the reasons for the shootings. Being denied tenure? Not liking your haircut? Not responding quickly enough during an armed robbery? Trivial reasons, as if any reason could ever justify a shooting. Selfish and ungodly. As moral people we seek answers and reasons. Though we do not condone a shooting we can understand self-defense in extreme situations, or simply the heartbreak of true psychological madness. But in the shootings highlighted above, the reasons make the times perilous, because they are trivial and selfish, just as Paul said men would be. Worse, are the many shootings that have no motive. People simply show up somewhere and begin shooting randomly. Note that the list of shootings are not scraped together over a period of years, they all occurred in the last week. Tragically, it was easy to find examples simply by googling the search term “shooting” under the news search and thousands of results popped up.
Notice the ages of the shooters. More and more often they are teens. In one of the news stories above, a 12-year-old boy killed his step-father. Children shooting parents is simply unthinkable. Paul mentions disobedience to parents in the verses above and there is no greater disobedience to parents than killing them or their siblings.
Satan is the god of this age and surely he hates humans as much as he hates God. Attacking us through our minds is his primary way he subverts any incipient Godliness and bring to the fore the appearance of godliness as described by Paul in the verses above. Since this is only a form of godliness it is false and easily crumbles when the sinful thoughts are not taken captive. James 1:14-15 says, “Each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin.”
It is not only perilous times because of bodily danger, but perilous because of our sinful natures to begin with, and satan’s war against humanity is increasing. Failure to take captive all sinful thoughts immediately lends a person vulnerable to satan’s wiles. People with corrupt motives creep in and for the people who are outside of Christ, I cannot even imagine how difficult it is to withstand the onslaught of deception and corruption. It is open season and every human is at risk. If you have not asked Jesus to forgive your sins, do so and do not delay. If you are truly sorry for the bad things you have done, thought, or said, ask Jesus to forgive them. Make Him the Lord and Savior of your life. If you are saved, you are not immune to being hunted either. Satan hates the Godly even more than the godless, and it is incumbent upon every Christian to persevere daily in the diligence of seeking His face. Doing so brightens His light inside us, and in these perilous times, what better antidote than being the Light of Jesus shining into the eyes of those who dwell in dark places? It is a gift to be bright for Him, because the unsaved are “the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.” (MAT 4:16)