As America reels from yet another devastating tragedy, the message of the ancient Hebrew prophets speaks to us afresh: A nation that is filled with violence is a nation on the verge of collapse. Consider where we stand today.
While grieving families in Aurora, CO come to grips with their agonizing losses, it is sobering to realize that the movie theater massacre was actually the sixth multiple-victim shooting in America so far in July, with a total of 24 killed and almost 100 wounded (again, this represents multiple-victim shootings only).
As we look back over the last five years, the roll-call of horror and pain is overwhelming, especially when we remember that each of these “statistics” represents a precious, irreplaceable, human life (and note that I’m not listing the large number of people who were wounded):
• Jan. 8, 2011, Tuscon, AZ: 6 dead (at a political rally)
• Nov. 5, 2009, Ft. Hood, TX: 13 dead (at an army base)
• Apr. 3, 2009, Binghamton, NY: 13 dead (at an immigration center)
• Mar. 30, 2009, Carthage, NC: 8 dead (at a nursing home)
• Mar. 29, 2009, Santa Clara, CA: 6 dead (family members)
• Mar. 10, 2009, Samson, AL: 10 dead (including the killer’s mother and grandparents)
• Dec. 24, 2008, Covina, CA: 9 dead (at a family Christmas party)
• Sept. 2, 2008: Alger, WA: 6 dead (at several locations)
• Feb. 14, 2008: Dekalb, IL: 6 dead (at a college campus)
• Feb. 2, 2008: Chicago, IL: 5 dead (at a store)
• Dec. 24, 2007: Carnation, WA: 6 dead (family members)
• April 16, 2007, Blacksburg, VA: 33 dead (at a college campus)
… Talk of gun control or media censorship is hardly the solution. The fact is that we have lost the consciousness of God and the fear of God, and without a heartfelt, genuine turning to the Lord, our future looks more bloody than blessed. The hour is as late as it is urgent.