Where does murder come from?

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With recent events in America, one wonders, “Why?  Why are people killing others?”  Meanwhile the left is using these tragedies as an excuse to shift the blame to an inanimate object.  This of course makes the right angry enough to commit murder of the heart, while the left is angry enough to actually commit murder.  Their pundits are encouraging it on the nightly news, if that is what you call it.  Of course on the right we’ve taken to calling if fake news, because we are tired of all the lies, half truths, and godless, communist, propaganda.  Before you run off, assuming this is a political rant, I urge you to keep reading.

Murder is nothing new.  Mankind has been killing since the beginning.  The agnostic, or atheist left would have you believe it is a matter of education.  They assume that people are naturally good intentioned, and if they grow up to be hateful, bigots, evil conservatives, or murderers, it is simply because they were given wrong, or inadequate education.  As a Christian, a Father of 4, and a Corrections Officer of 24 years, I can assure you that is not the case.

We are born with one thing on our minds, our own individual pleasure.  Our flesh is the most important thing to us.  We learn to love our parents, because they take care of us.  It still boils down to self.  Without them, I would have nobody to feed me, clean me, comfort me.  We don’t wonder why they do those things at first.  We just accept it.  We must have some quality about us that is worthy of that kind of affection, but then the lessons begin.  Punishment for doing bad things.  Rewards for doing good things.  Well the nature of a child loves rewards.  The flesh loves goodies, and compliments, but it hates spankings, physical pain, removal of fun things.

Being selfish, and evil is our nature.  We have to be taught to be good.  We want to be comfortable, and enjoy pleasurable things.  That is not necessarily sinful, but when it involves committing a sin, or sins of omission to achieve that comfort, or pleasure, then we are guilty.  Read what God has to say about it in His word,

James 4:1-10 (NASB) Things to Avoid
​  What is the source of quarrels and conflicts among you? Is not the source your pleasures that wage war in your members? You lust and do not have; so you commit murder. You are envious and cannot obtain; so you fight and quarrel. You do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures. You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture speaks to no purpose: “He jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us”? But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, “God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”  Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.  Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.  Be miserable and mourn and weep; let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy to gloom.  Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.

It is pretty clear that we murder because we are selfish, sinners at heart.  We don’t rightly fear God, nor do we heed his laws.  We make up our own to please our flesh.  We make up our own gods as well.  Some depressed teen surmises that nobody loves him, or they don’t live up to his unrealistic expectations of how they should behave towards him, which further drives him to hate those who don’t participate in his self-pity, so he decides to teach the world a lesson.  This by the way is the result of all the self-esteem nonsense pushed down our throats for the last 40 years.  People don’t need to feel better about themselves, or esteem themselves more, especially if that esteem is misplaced.  We need to see ourselves as God sees us.  We need the truth.

You didn’t see this happening in the 60’s and 70’s.  We used to drive to school with our rifles in a wrack on our pickup cab rear window.  It was common place.  Kids would come to school with their dear, or elk in the back of the pickup to show it off after a successful hunt.  The problem isn’t guns, kids, or video games.  It is the sinful heart of man, and the lies that we are telling our kids.  This is a necessary consequence of becoming a godless secular society.  You want to blame someone leftists?  Blame yourselves.

People seem so shocked by murder partially as a selfish way to virtue signal.  We also are shocked by it because we see ourselves as good, and deserving happy lives with many rewards, and pleasures.  To think that someone would not value us they way we value ourselves is a shock.  Of course there are exceptions to the rule.

There are people who are shocked for the right reasons, most of those people are Christians.  They see the value of human life according to the word of God.  They understand that we deserve death, and hell, and that every day is a blessing from God where we should seek to glorify Him.  They understand the inherent idolatry, and blasphemy of destroying an image bearer of God, and spilling the blood unjustly, the blood of His creatures who belong to him, the blood that contains the life.

What we need is for people to be taught the truth.  We are sinners.  We need for Christians, the Church, to preach the gospel of Christ.  If people come to Christ, and are changed, they won’t become mass murderers.  Do you want to see America great again?  Preach Christ!  More laws won’t do it.

 

Q. What kind of sick, depraved, ghoulish, satanic, mind would think it reasonable to sell chopped up human babies?

A. The kind that we had before God so mercifully saved us.

Ouch! I know it stings, but what do we expect? Do we actually expect the unregenerate to think, feel, act, as regenerate? I mean… come on. We need to remember how darkened and depraved our reasoning was before we were saved, so we can relate to the unsaved. We need to see them as people in need. Paul said he was the Chief of Sinner. He hunted Christians to jail them and kill them. Before our conversion each and every one of us was just as depraved as many of the people we are surprised by. I was disgusting in my sins, yet God saved me according to His sovereign will by His grace. God actively restrains humans from being as evil as they potentially could be. This is called common grace. It might not seem like it, but He does. Without His restraint, we would, each one of us, be worse than Hitler. So when lost people do ghoulish things it shouldn’t surprise us. We should be aghast. We should be overcome with grief. We should be so moved that we do something. Not just moved to talk about it for a couple of weeks and then move on to the next scandal, but rather moved to God glorifying action.
So, what should we do? What should Christians do in the face of abortion? First, we pray. We pray to God for strength, wisdom, and compassion. We pray for Him to bless our efforts in witnessing to the lost who are working at the clinics or there to get an abortion. We pray for God to save them, for their hearts to be changed in the second birth. Second, we ask our Pastors and Elders for permission and instruction before we go. Third, we go as an organized group to preach the gospel, listen to their heartfelt cries, share the truth in love, offer them any assistance we have available, and we serve them in humility.
What we don’t do is another thing we should address. We don’t get into screaming matches. We don’t go to argue with, “those people.” We don’t go to argue with the police. We don’t go to get arrested. (If we are doing what we should be and we get arrested that is fine.) We don’t go to win a debate. If we act in a way that is disgraceful we are effectively ruining our witness and defiling the worth of the cross with our actions.
What’ at stake? Think about it. Human lives are at stake. People made in the image of God for His glory are being ruthlessly murdered and mutilated. We know what we can do. Are we going to do it? I hope so. I hope I will be faithful. It is one thing for me to sit at a keyboard and write about it. It is another to actually get out and do something about it. That is my prayer, that we will get out and do the work that is our good work prepared for us before time.

Should we, as Christians be ready to defend ourselves and others with lethal force?

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This evil man happens to be a muslim carrying out the commands of the Quran. If the Brits could carry guns someone could have stopped him from beheading a man in broad daylight in the middle of the street.

 

 

Luke 22:36, “…And He said to them, “But now, whoever has a money belt is to take it along, likewise also a bag, and whoever has no sword is to sell his coat and buy one…” This verse has long been asserted to be allegorical. Theologians have said that this verse tells us to be prepared to fight the spiritual enemy in spiritual places. That it doesn’t mean physical fighting. They say that we must be ready to fight temptations. Here is a quote from Calvin’s Commentary for verse 36,

But now let him who hath a purse take it. In metaphorical language he threatens that they will soon meet with great troubles and fierce attacks; just as when a general, intending to lead the soldiers into the field of battle, calls them to arms, and orders them to lay aside every other care, and think of nothing else than fighting, not even to take any thought about procuring food. For he shows them–as is usually done in cases of extreme danger–that every thing must be sold, even to the scrip and the purse, in order to supply them with arms. And yet he does not call them to an outward conflict, but only, under the comparison of fighting, he warns them of the severe struggles of temptations which they must undergo, and of the fierce attacks which they must sustain in spiritual contests. That they might more willingly throw themselves on the providence of God, he first reminded them, as I have said, that God took care to supply them with what was necessary, even when they carried with them no supplies of food and raiment. Having experienced so large and seasonable supplies from God, they ought not, for the future, to entertain any doubt that he would provide for every one of their necessities.

Here is a quote from the Geneva Study Bible notes, “{m} Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.

(m) He says all this using an allegory, as if he said, O my friends and fellow soldiers, you have lived until now in relative peace: but now there is at hand a most severe battle to be fought, and you must therefore lay all other things aside and think about dressing yourselves in armour. And what this armour is, is shown by his own example, when he prayed afterward in the garden and reproved Peter for striking with the sword.”

Here is John Wesley’s notes on the verse, “22:36 But now – You will be quite in another situation. You will want every thing. He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one – It is plain, this is not to be taken literally. It only means, This will be a time of extreme danger.”

They site Luke 22:50-51 as support for this assertion. Luke 22:50-51, “…And one of them struck the slave of the high priest and cut off his right ear. But Jesus answered and said, “Stop! No more of this.” And He touched his ear and healed him…”

 

I tend to agree with John Gill’s understanding of the verse. Here is a quote from his exposition of the Bible,

“Then said he unto them,…. That is, Jesus said unto them, as the Persic version expresses it:

but now he that hath a purse let him take it, and likewise his scrip; signifying hereby, that from this time forward, immediately after his departure from them, after his death, resurrection, and ascension, when they should be sent into all the world to preach the Gospel, it would be otherwise with them than before; that they should be reduced to great penury and distress, should neither have food, nor money to buy any with; and that they should suffer hunger, and thirst, and nakedness, and have no certain dwellingplace, as was their case; see 1 Corinthians 4:11 and that they would not be received, and entertained in the manner they had been; and therefore it would be advisable, if they had any provisions, to take them with them in their scrips; or if they had any money, to carry it with them in their purses; for glad would they be to provide themselves with necessaries at any rate:

and he that hath no sword; the word “sword” is not in this clause, but in the next; it is only in the original, “he that hath not”; which, at first sight; looks as if the sense was, he that hath not a purse, or a scrip, to sell, and buy a sword with, let him sell his garment, and buy one: but, as De Dieu observes, the phrase, “he that hath not”, is the same with “he that has nothing”; who is a poor man, and has no money to buy a sword with, let him part with his garment, which rich men, who had money, had no need to do; though the Syriac, Persic, and Arabic versions put the word sword, in both clauses;

he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment and buy a sword; that is, if he could get one no other way. Christ here uses the common dialect of the nation, as Dr. Lightfoot observes. So on the feast of dedication of the temple,

“if a man had not any thing to eat, but what he had by alms, he must beg, or , “sell his garment”, and take oil, and lamps, and light them (u).”

These words of Christ are not to be understood literally, that he would have his disciples furnish themselves with swords at any rate, since he would never have said, as he afterwards does, that two were sufficient; which could not be enough for eleven men; or have forbid Peter the use of one, as he did in a very little time after this: but his meaning is, that wherever they came, and a door was opened for the preaching of the Gospel, they would have many adversaries, and these powerful, and would be used with great violence, and be followed with rage and persecution; so that they might seem to stand in need of swords to defend them: the phrase is expressive of the danger they would be exposed to, and of their need of protection; and therefore it was wrong in them to be disputing and quarrelling about superiority, or looking out for, and expecting temporal pomp and grandeur, when this would be their forlorn, destitute, and afflicted condition; and they would quickly see the affliction and distress begin in himself. In “seven” ancient copies of Beza’s, it is read in the future tense, “he shall take, he shall sell, he shall buy”.”

(u) Maimon. Hilch. Megilla Uchanucha, c. 4. sect. 12.

There clarification we need is clear when we add context. The first assertion stops at the rebuke by Christ when one of the disciples used a sword to attack the slave of the high priest. This is to support the notion of physical pacifism today. The fact that Christ rebuked him for using force against an aggressor is misunderstood to mean that the use of force against an aggressor is wrong in all circumstances. We all agree that our true enemies are of the spiritual world and they are not of flesh and blood, but we must acknowledge that these enemies use flesh and blood as fodder for their war against God and His servants.

We must also look at all of the text. If we read verses 52-52, “…Then Jesus said to the chief priests and officers of the temple and elders who had come against Him, “Have you come out with swords and clubs as you would against a robber? “While I was with you daily in the temple, you did not lay hands on Me; but this hour and the power of darkness are yours.”…” We see that Jesus is explaining to the chief priests and officers of the temple and elders that He has never given them cause to come with weapons against Him. He wasn’t saying that there is never a time to use force. He was saying that that moment wasn’t the time for it.

We can also see from the entirety of the New Testament that Christ came to fulfill a purpose that was from the Father. For the time that He was here and through the time of His ministry He would not be stopped until that time which was decreed. When His kingdom was established and He would ascend then the disciples would be open for persecution much as He was.

They would be hated for His namesake. There would be all sorts of dangers and hardships. They were to spread the gospel and establish the Church in opposition to the world, Contra Mundum. Provisions would be required. While Christ was with them, they didn’t need anything and were sent out with the provision of God to show them that He would care for them. They were now being sent out. They would be providing for others out of God’s provision for them, both spiritually and materially. When we see someone being oppressed unjustly, assaulted or abused, we have an obligation out of love to assist them. Certainly while the disciples were waging spiritual warfare they at times must do physical battle with the enemy’s forces as well.

I’m not suggesting that they were like the crusaders. They weren’t running around fighting great battles. I think it is reasonable to assume they were to defend themselves and others from thieves, murderers, and other such offenders. We know that if a man lives by the sword he shall die by the sword, but that isn’t what they are being told to do. They aren’t being told to go out as murderous killers or warriors like the Muslims. They are simply being warned that things are going to get bad once Jesus is no longer bodily with them. They are being told to be wise as serpents and gentle as doves. I personally have no problem owning firearms and protecting myself and others when prudent. I won’t tell you to violate your conscience either.

I believe it is much more loving to live in an ordered society with laws, but when the police aren’t around to help you must stand up and deal with evil men. Love for people will move us to defend them from the enemy’s minions. Love for Christ will make us prudent in our use of force. If we don’t love Christ, our use of force will surely turn into cruel tyranny. This is what we see going on all around the world today.

We must first and foremost be Christians. We must be people who have repented of sin and put our faith in the Lord Jesus for our salvation. We must seek His kingdom first and make Him preeminent in our minds, and lives. When His will is Lord over ours we won’t take a life without great cause and deliberation.