Friday December 14 will be remembered as one of the most horrific days in recent American history as one young man murdered twenty of the most innocent defenseless among us along with seven other adults. Since that event I have read a number of analyses of the killings in Connecticut on Friday. Some of them are good seeing the events as pure evil while others are way off base blaming circumstances. (One of the better Christian responses using cultural data is the article by Michael Craven below. Few others support the Christian world view with the type of data Craven uses). As most of you know I believe that the biggest cause of these horrific atrocities is the one I shared from the pulpit yesterday: There is no longer a fear of God in the land. This is why suicide and murder occur so frequently. No one believes anymore that upon death they will be accountable for their actions. There is no respect for God and His Law.
Matthew 10:28 reads, “Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul, but fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in Hell.” The fear of God restrains evil and without that fear then evil runs rampant. Murder and killing are not condemned as they should be thus creating a culture of violence. When one destroys another human being created in the image of God, they are attacking a valuable intrinsically worthy being. Just as fear of the death penalty decreases murder, so should fear of Hell deter evil actions. Without the fear of meeting a Holy, Righteous God who holds humans accountable for their actions then people are “free” to do the evil desires of their hearts. It is this lack of fear of God and His Law that has brought about the abortion culture of death. God will bring about vengeance upon evil. Little did the young man who killed the children in Connecticut realize that the moment after he put the gun to his own head that he would find himself summoned before a Holy God who cannot look upon evil and find himself condemned for an eternity in Hell. Like most in modern America he did not realize that God is “a consuming fire” and that he will not be mocked by self-righteous arrogant human beings.
In 2001 after the slayings of thousands of Americans I was publicly quoted as saying, I was afraid that God was withdrawing His protective hand over America because of its sin. We have become too comfortable with violence, death and murder as explified by acceptance of increase of murders in our cities, indiscriminate bombing of children and the violent slaughter of unborn babies. Restrictions on semi-automatic weapons or guards at school buildings will not eliminate the desire for violence coming from the human heart. It will only be by a internal change in the human heart that begins with a healthy fear of God. It is time for pastors and leaders in society to again preach God’s Law and His character of Holiness and Righteousness.
By Dr. Mark Hamilton, Professor of Philosophy at Ashland University, Ashland, OH