GM: Death in Orlando: Life in Christ
The question is not, how did the #OrlandoKiller manage to kill so many people by himself! But rather what kind of twisted mind, and what kind of worldview would move someone to carry out such an act of egregious wickedness!
At another level, the question is not, how did POTUS handle this recent act of terror committed by a Muslim extremist, or whether or not Trump’s campaign will benefit from this madness, but rather a more existential arises; how does humanity deal with evil?
Do we ‘fight fire with greater firepower’, ‘ bomb the hell of out them’, and put up a wall to protect our borders? Do we, on the other hand, with patience, seek a greater understanding of another culture, thus avoiding the ‘blame game’, and the ‘hate response’?
Or do turn to the Word of God for answers to complex questions?
In this respect three Words came to mind, as I pondered on the Headlines which I would imagine all the world’s newspapers would be carrying on such a morning as this. #OrlandoKillings.
The first is the same Word which came when I reflected on the untimely death of a young patient.
” Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God”. 2 Cor. 1:3-4. NIV
Therefore at time like this, our first consideration is not to ‘ reason why’, but rather to offer comfort to the bereaved, the injured and the confused and shocked Gay Community in Orlando and beyond. To offer prayers on behalf of the dead, the anguished families and even the victim, his family and his community.
The second response is to reflect deeply on the Gospel appointed for my Church on Sunday which I was led to read this morning. It’s a well known story about a ‘ madman ‘, a man into whom a ‘ Legion’ of demons had entered. The ‘ Gerasene Demoniac ‘: found in Luke 8:26-39.
And at the end of the day the ‘ people…. found the man from whom the demons had gone, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind’.
So regardless of warped ideology, twisted theology, or just plain wickedness, for ‘ out of the hearts of men cone all kind of evil’, only Jesus can, in the final analysis ‘ bring people back to their right mind’.
Finally a Word to both those in the Church and those outside who mistakenly believe that homosexuality is special sin, and that homosexuals deserve whatever ‘ comes upon them’.
REPENT OR PERISH
At that very time there were some present who told him ( Jesus) about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with the their sacrifices.
He asked them, ” Do you think that because those Galileans suffered in this way they are worse sinners than all Galileans?.
No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as they did”.
Luke 13:1-5 NRSV
The point here, is that in the final analysis, it is not where you live, what religion you belong to, who you vote for, what kind of lifestyle you lead, or whether you go to church on Saturday or Sunday! The reality, whether you accept it or not, whether you believe it or not, and it is our ( the disciples of Christ) mandate to tell everybody, is that only two things in life matter. Judgement before the Crucified Christ, and whether or not you have repented of your sins or not!
So forget about Trump and President Obama. Forget about whether or not Muslims are more evil than anyone else. Forget about whether or not the Gay and Lesbian lifestyle is more sinful than any other. And concentrate on living a repentant life before a God who died on the Cross for all mankind. Or we too will perish.
For all have sinned, and all have fallen short of the Glory of God. And the wages of all sin is death, but thank God for Jesus, the gift of God is Eternal and unending and a Resurrected Life, in Christ Jesus. Once we turn to Him and Repent!
Whether in Orlando or in Afghanistan!
And that new life begins right here on earth, and guides us to offer compassion and mercy to all who need Jesus. The entire human race!
What a friend, indeed, we have in Jesus!
All, not just some, All our sins and griefs to bear.
In fact yesterday at Church, having reflected on the ” Holy Communion” hymn before going to Church:
Here, O my Lord, I see thee face to face;
here faith would touch and handle things unseen;
here grasp with firmer hand the eternal grace,
and all my weariness upon thee lean …
I spent a while at the altar, just ‘ pouring on the Everlasting Arms, all my weariness’.
I pray God, that on this very testing morning for the entire human race, we may pour out on Jesus, all ‘ our weariness’ about a sick, confused and broken World.