(BNC) — No matter what philosophical garb it wears or political stripe it professes, Christians are always dismayed at acts of violence. Aggression and physical harm have become more commonplace and have been justified in many American media.
In Charlottesville, Va., a man smashed a car into a crowd of protestors on Saturday, killing one woman and injuring 19. A number of saints spoke out yet again to condemn this most recent act of violence and point to a superior way.
From Edmond, Okla., teacher Phil Sanders, of the TV program, “In Search of the Lord’s Way,” posted his perspective on Facebook:
So much hate. When people lose sight of the Lord Jesus and follow their passions, they cease loving their enemies. And peace flies away.
Violence is the worst of solutions. No one resolves the anger through violence.
Matthew 5:44-48; 7:12 is still the best way. Those who talk Christianity but employ violence are not friends to true righteousness.
Participant in the Remington Ridge church plant, as well as president and CEO of Western Surplus Lines Insurance Agency in Abilene, Tex., Ron McElyea emailed BNC with this observation:
Regrettably, this is just another circumstance in our culture that is predictable. When God and His truth are taken out of any society and culture the results are always chaos and confusion caused by human selfishness. History is full of identical situations and circumstances, both ancient and more recent history. “We are doomed to repeat history”, is often suggested. Since the very beginning, any culture or society that diminished God and His teachings has always been doomed to repeat the same mistakes and bring about the same results that sin always brings, corruption and violence. Paul was writing the Christian church in Galatia but the words he wrote apply as a guiding principle whether biblical or secular. Paul makes these statements in Galatians 5:14-15, “For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself. But if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another.” Truth is always truth! We are living “truth” of that, aren’t we?
Christians are quick to point to causes of violence, especially in personal decisions and attitudes and to their solution. Christian blogger Mike Riley, of El Paso, Tex., directed BNC to a post of his from last month, where he decried,
In all of my 70 plus years on earth, I have never seen the amount of hatred spewing out from the minds and mouths of men toward their fellow man as I have seen in the past year. We see hatred in the fabric of our whole society, through social media, in the political arena, and in our daily interaction with others, i.e., hatred of police and other authority figures (cf. 2 Peter 2:9-15; Jude 1:7-10 NLT).
Mike quickly pivoted to point out the Bible as the answer to the hatred and violence in American society. He said that
… we have to be willing to be guided by the teachings of the Holy Spirit in order to cease any hateful attitude we might have and be pleasing to God. We have to stop the seemingly endless fighting and bickering between one another or we will destroy one another. The question is, are we willing to stop?
Joey Ferrell, president of Tennessee Home Theater in Woodbury, Tenn., and vocational evangelist, also noted on Facebook a general comment Aug. 14, that, as he told BNC, applied to Charlottesville. He made it personal:
Some of my best friends are of a different skin color. Some of the brethren that I admire the most are from a foreign country and talk a little funny to me. Many of the Christians that I come into contact daily in my social world are from different ends of the equality segment in wealth. And that is quite all right. When the focus of the heart is centered on the true aspect of the soul…none of these things matter any more than others. Has it been a problem? Yes! Will it continue to be a problem? Yes! Can we stop it? No. Can we brush it under a rug? No. But we CAN make a difference by changing our heart if we fall into a category of not loving a soul because of sex, race, wealth, skin tone, language, origin of birth, or any of these things. I know I am trying my absolute best to continue growing in this, and you should be too. If you are not? Shame on you!
Christ’s disciples not only show dismay over violence, but these quoted above, together with all his faithful people, proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ as the only means to bring peace with God and among people.
Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three married children and six grandchildren. He sometimes writes “7 Points.” http://randal.us