Posted in childlike faith, newtown, sandy hook school, shooting

Putting Newtown behind and Jesus ahead, we ask ‘Why the children?’

Children are important to Jesus. That is why satan seeks to kill them.

Did you know that on the same day as the horrific Newtown killings, a deranged man stabbed 22 young children at a Chinese elementary school? And that it was the third such type of stabbing attack at a school within the last two years?

Why the children? Here is why–

“and they said to him, “Do you hear what these are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes; have you never read, “‘Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies you have prepared praise’?” (Matthew 21:16).

Jesus said this in response to the following in the verse prior, and note carefully!

“But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying out in the temple, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” they were indignant”

The children were shouting hosannas!

The Pharisees were indignant over the children’s joy in recognizing Him!

In Gill’s Exposition it says, “This owing to God’s disposing them hereunto, putting it into their mouths, and strengthening them to declare it in a very strong and powerful manner; so that his strength was made perfect in their weakness, and his praise the more glorious.”

Do not overlook the children in their clear praise and strength of faith in one Jesus the Christ. Children are Christ’s answer to pure faith, and a rebuke to all who would squash a religious child’s enthusiasm for proclaiming Him. Woe to those who squash it! Woe!

“Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” (Luke 18:17)

“But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 19:14).

Jesus sets a great store on children, and uses them for praise to Himself and as a warning to adults to follow their faith example.

Why were the children killed? Why? We cry. I believe it is because children are the last segment of the population to be attacked by satan.

Satan has the mothers via the corruption and eternal discontent of feminism. He has the fathers through pornography and adultery and abandonment. He has the youths through drugs and the narcoleptic spellbinder of technology. He has the institutions of government, entertainment, and even religion. What’s left for him to freshly attack?

Children.

For example, abortion. Child molestation is another way satan has attacked the children. The hidden shame of child trafficking in America (and in the rest of the world) is a scourge on us all. But those and other methods of attacking children are indirect. So Satan had a thought- why not kill them directly?

There is nothing to make a nation, even a world, weep and mourn as much as a child massacre. Just the thought of vulnerable little bodies strewn bloody on the floor is enough to make the world stop and take a collective gasp.

Jesus indicated this when He spoke of the abomination of desolation during the tribulation- “And alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days!

As Gill explained, “whose tender affection to their infants will not suffer them to leave them behind them; and yet such their weakness, that they will not be able to carry them with them; at least, they must be great hindrances to their speedy flight.”

What defeats a family more, or crumbles their faith more, than losing a child to senseless violence? Not only would satan delight in the fact that a precious one’s childlike faith has been snuffed out, and that they can no longer praise Jesus in purity and trust, but he will also delight in the family’s grief and difficulty traversing the mountain of sorrow back to firm faith in Jesus again- if they ever do. Those of no faith will be unlikely to ever turn to Jesus. That likelihood diminishes with each bullet sent from a gun to slay a babe.

Satan is not overlooking the children in his attacks. But neither is Jesus. He ordained praise from babes. He taught us all to have childlike faith and trust in Him. He said that the little children should not be hindered from coming to Him. They were among the first before religious adults to recognize who He was on earth and they sang with joy.

I personally believe that the children who were killed in CT were young enough to see the angels God sent to minister to them as they hid in closets. “See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you, that their angels in heaven continually behold the face of My Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 18:10). It’s something to imagine anyway.

Right now we trust in Him to create something good out of man’s horror. If you are finding it hard to move on to the solid rock of trust in a Good and Holy Savior, then ask the Spirit to increase your faith. (Luke 17:5). He surely does equip us to handle what comes in this world, a world I remind us all, is not our home.

As heavy as this affliction is, it is but a light affliction. (2 Corinthians 4:17). The children sang hosannas at the temple, and so should we. Though we cannot see the mercies and the glory that will emerge from this atrocity, we should have a childlike faith that something merciful and good will. If you don’t have that kind of faith, then at least do it for the children.

Posted in children, newtown, shooting

Massacre of the innocents

How long, O Lord? [Additional thoughts here]

“Twenty-seven people, including 20 children, are dead after a shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Another person was found dead at 36 Yogananda St. in Newtown, sources told The Courant. The shootings at the school took place in two rooms, one of which is a kindergarten classroom, sources said. One entire classroom is unaccounted for.”

Evil against children has always been in the world.

“Then the king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other Puah, “When you serve as midwife to the Hebrew women and see them on the birthstool, if it is a son, you shall kill him, but if it is a daughter, she shall live.” (Exodus 1:15)

But God heard Israel’s groaning–

“During those many days the king of Egypt died, and the people of Israel groaned because of their slavery and cried out for help. Their cry for rescue from slavery came up to God. And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. God saw the people of Israel—and God knew.” (Exodus 2:23-25)

Evil is still in the world.

“Then Herod, when he saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, became furious, and he sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under, according to the time that he had ascertained from the wise men. Then was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah: “A voice was heard in Ramah, weeping and loud lamentation, Rachel weeping for her children; she refused to be comforted, because they are no more.” (Matthew 2:16-18)

But God hears their groaning and He sends a Comforter–

“Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.’ (John 16:7)

Posted in aurora, shooting, theater

UPDATED- Aurora Colorado shooting

Many tears this morning for our evil, sinful dying world, and the people affected by the tragic and wanton shooting in Aurora Colorado. The only Light of this world is Jesus. ‘When the darkness closes in I will still say Blessed be the name of the Lord’.

Though the fig tree should not blossom,
nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail
and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold
and there be no herd in the stalls,
18 yet I will rejoice in the LORD;
I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
19 GOD, the Lord, is my strength;
he makes my feet like the deer’s;
he makes me tread on my high places.
(Habakkuk 3:17-19)

—————Update————–

OK I’ve had time to cry, pray, mourn, sing, run to the bible, and pray some more. That’s what I do on tragedy days.

Jesus is Good. How so, one might ask? Well, how many angels did He send to tend to the people who love Him? “Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?” (Hebrews 1:14). If we were blessed with spiritual eyes being opened as Elisha’s servant was, (2 Kings 6:17) and God allowed him to see the myriads of chariots in the spiritual realms standing at the ready for battle, we might see legions of angels sent from on high at the command of God, to minister to those in pain and anguish in Aurora Colorado this morning.

He is Good because though the evil stain of sin and hate overspread the Mall in Aurora, His victory will out pace all that satan can do or ever thought to do. Satan is a loser and all his schemes and plans will fail. The Holy God of Israel has won! Take heart even in the darkness because He is the Light! He has the victory.

Therefore who can say how many miracles were given in grace to the people at the shooting location? Who can say how many medical miracles He effected through the hands and minds of the paramedics, nurses, and doctors? Who can say who many miracles were effected by His own hand, directly? Because He is good and loves us, we can have assurance that His eyes were on the situation.

“For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.” (2 Chronicles 16:9a)

What else is Good? We do not know how many people who were threatened with death at any second will re-think their time on earth and finally repent to Jesus unto salvation. He sends Gospel seeds which flower, and do so ever more when there is darkness and sin. This is so He can be glorified ever more brightly.

He is Good because He will accept true repentance from all who come to Him, even the shooter himself. His mercies are so far above us, we cannot conceive of a loving God such as this. Yet He does love us. He is Good because of this, caring for and redeeming a sinful humanity.

It is satan that is bad. But we are not unaware of satan’s schemes (2 Corinthians 2:11) and we persevere in love so satan will not steal the joy, even on a dark day such as this. My love for Christ does not depend on positive circumstances. Let our love for Him and our faith that He is working in this situation just as He always has in every situation, ever since He said, “in the beginning…”

Posted in end time, end time. prophecy, perilous times, shooting

It’s open season on humans

Forget deer season, the moose lottery, and duck hunting. There’s a new season, and it’s humans who are now the hunted.

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)