Our hearts broke as we heard the news of yet another mass high school shooting – this time in Parkland, Florida, where 17 souls were gunned down by a troubled, teenage boy named Nikolas Cruz. We can’t imagine what the families are feeling right now.
Our mom died last year – and that hurt badly – but to have lost her at the hand of a murderous teenage boy would’ve been unbearable. We continue to pray for the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, to comfort the families’ hearts.
A promise we remember during times like this is that one day Jesus “will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things (will be) gone forever” (Revelation 21:4).
We long for this day. We pray for this day.
Until then, it’s our responsibility as Christians to be the hands and feet of Jesus, by weeping with the brokenhearted and bringing comfort in every way possible (like many churches in the Parkland community are doing). Those of us who aren’t nearby can continue to pray and provide support as needs arise.
It’s also our duty to help make sense of it all – because the world system, especially the public school system, has no answers after something like this.
Metal detectors can’t fix evil hearts. Safe spaces don’t heal troubled minds. Political correctness doesn’t create better kids.
So, many people are just blaming the guns.
But an AR-15 didn’t kill these souls – Nikolas Cruz did. The weapon he used wasn’t charged with 17 counts of pre-meditated murder. The man using it was.
We know this deep in all of our hearts. Our consciences testify that human beings are moral agents, capable of both good and evil. And the spirit inside each of us longs for moral wrongs to be made right, regardless of how many public educators deny this transcendent moral truth.
Jesus said, “Out of the heart come evil thoughts – murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander” (Matthew 15:19).
The bottom line is that we live in a fallen world, where human beings have hearts capable of great evil, aided and abetted by demonic forces of Satan, who come only to “rob, kill, and destroy” (John 10:10a).
So when a horrific crime like this happens, we immediately know an evil man, possessed by an evil spirit, chose to take innocent life. This is the fallen world in which we live.
Yet his choice did not take place in a vacuum. He lives in and has been educated by an American educational system that has completely rejected God, His statues and His ways.
Scripture reveals that when this happens in a society, moral corruption will manifest itself through violence.
“Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence” (Genesis 6:11).
Our public schools are proof positive of this powerful truth.
Just pay attention to the downward trend. The major problems in schools decades ago dealt more with tardiness, smoking and disrespect than in today’s schools, where drug abuse, illicit sex and school shootings are commonplace.
And this digression can be directly pinned back to the 1960s, where a series of Supreme Court decisions aggressively removed God from our schools.
In 1962, the Engel v. Vital Supreme Court Decision eliminated prayer. Then, in 1963, Bible reading was removed as well, in Abington v. Schempp. The rest of 1960s saw an aggressive dismissal of moral standards. By 1980, the Ten Commandments were eventually removed from the walls of school as well in the Stone v. Graham Decision.
The majority opinion in that case, stated: “If the posted copies of the Ten Commandments are to have any effect at all, it will be to induce the schoolchildren to read, meditate upon, perhaps to venerate and obey, the Commandments. However desirable this might be as a matter of private devotion, it is not a permissible state objective under the Establishment Clause of the Constitution.”
Read that again slowly, and think it all the way through – in light of what happened last week.
Schoolchildren might actually “read, meditate upon, venerate and obey” a commandment like “Thou shalt not kill.”
Violence is filling the void.
The removal of God was complete in 1992, as the Planned Parenthood v. Casey Supreme Court decision encapsulated the entire 1960s moral revolution. The majority opinion, written by Justice Anthony Kennedy, stated, “At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning of the universe, and of the mystery of human life.”
Everyone does what’s right in their own eyes, including Nikolas Cruz.
A few years after this 1992 decision, before Nikolas Cruz was even born, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold stepped into their basement to record a video before walking into Columbine High School, killing 13 people and wounding 24 others.
There you have it: The moral revolution came full circle. Remove God, and violence filled the void.
It’s time to turn back to the only One who can save us. Banning guns won’t fix the problem – because there’s not a police force big enough to make a man do what is right.
But there is One, whose name is Jesus, who can penetrate the most hardened hearts.
We’ll still have trouble in this world because it is fallen until Christ returns, but we can find refuge and hope beyond the pain and suffering we feel now.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
Media wishing to interview Jason & David Benham, please contact [email protected].