Thursday, June 18, 2015

Blood and Sacrifice

What about the Galileans whose blood Pilate mixed with their sacrifices? Luke 13:1

While driving to work this morning my wife called me, “Troy, did you hear about the shooting in the Church in South Carolina? Almost insensitively  to the shock of murder especially in the south, I responded “There is always a shooting in the south” It wasn’t as if I thought the north was any safer, it’s just that redundancy of hearing bad news across the airways had driven me into a sort of current event seclusion.

I had stop reading the news, stop watching the news, and even when news came on my favorite gospel music station I would turn away from the news. I had resolved within myself that the only good new I would hear in this lifetime was the good news of Jesus Christ.

“No” my wife continued, “I heard there were like 9 people that were killed d even the pastor” At that moment the very reason I stop watching news, resurfaced. My body began to quiver uncontrollable as if I was about to throw up.  “Let me call you back” I said to my wife as I pulled into the parking lot of the Wawa at Rhawn and the Roosevelt Blvd.  Still dazed after a while I heard my son say “Dad are we gonna’ just sit in the car or are we going in the store?”

Let’s not get this wrong we are not talking about some divine punishment for hidden sin, we are talking men and women of God whose blood was spilled in God’s house. I don’t know these people, though they are with me brothers and sisters in Christ. I do know they did not deserve to die; they did not deserve to be gunned down for no other reason than their ethnicity, or religion, or color of their skin, or even political positions. Or whatever answer someone can resolve as justifying their murders

So when we hear these things we mourn, we suffer, we become fearful, because the very essence of who we are in Christ is always hated by the world. In fact the Apostle Paul tells us that the very desire to do what is right will bring about persecution 2 Timothy 3:12. Because the enemy (The God of this world) has no desire to see the word of God spread throughout, no desire to see the hungry feed, the sick healed, he has no desire to see men walk upright in Christ. And he will do all that he can, and send whomever he can to stop our efforts of living a godly life. The proud, the arrogant, abusive, disobedient, ungrateful, slanders, swollen with deceit, treacherous people are all tools that the enemy will send to destroy you and your walk with Christ.  2 Timothy 3:2-4 And we can be sure of it, because those are the very same people that the enemy sent for Christ, not knowing that in Christ’s death victory is ours!

As Christians we have to realize that the enemy will attack! Sometimes covertly, sometimes overtly, sometimes passively, sometimes violently But he will attack and seek to destroy us  Jesus said "If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you!" John 15:20

In light of these tragic events my thoughts wondered to Luke 13:1 that upon hearing the reports of the murder of the Galilean in the temple, Jesus never flinched. He did not try to answer why this had happen, or where God was when Pilate was killing Galileans.  In the light of all the sorrow Jesus tells a story of an unproductive fig tree and warns us to repent.

It’s easy in light of hate to want to reward violence with more hate and violence, But Jesus is telling us to stay focused, repent, love your neighbor, and  love your enemy, preach the gospel, feed the hungry,  and heal the sick because these are the weapons of our warfare.