"The question isn't why an all-powerful God allow tragedy to happen; the question is what is wrong with us that we take the freedom God made us with and use it for tragedy?" – Steve Deace
THIS is the column I've been procrastinating on writing. Through personal experience, I've been forced to study the subject of mass shooters. I knew one. I even traveled with him to events and shared motel rooms with him. In the middle of March, 2005, he shot and killed seven of my close friends and himself during a church service. I was on my way there, but due to a car problem I turned around and went home. I lived to write another day.
Ironically, on new year's day that year, I had posted a column entitled "Why does God allow such things to happen." To the end of his life, the leader of our church wondered why such a thing happened. Could it be that God allowed it so that some of us could relate to the victims and survivors of mass shootings, and to enable us to find causes and solutions?
The apostle Paul warned us very strongly about allowing a root of bitterness to take root in our minds.
" . . some commonalities do stand out. A 2016 study published by psychologist Dr. Peter Langman revealed that 82% of the perpetrators of mass shootings came from broken homes with seriously dysfunctional families where 'not just divorce and separation, but also infidelity, substance abuse, criminal behavior, domestic violence, and child abuse' were present.
The shooter in our case lived with his divorced mother. He had been bullied on the school bus years ago, something we didn't know. I saw his temper, and sadly offended him once. His defense mechanism was humor, but life was getting tougher for him, not better. And finally, we believe, he was possessed by a demon. A judge's husband had been shot in Chicago a few days before, and the killer drove to Milwaukee. A cop thought he was parked suspiciously and approached him, and the guy committed suicide. Unfortunately, that doesn't kill the demon. And it looks for someone else to possess. We believe it found Terry a few miles away, and the rest is history. A few days later an Indian school in northern Minnesota was shot up, probably by the same demon. The shootings in 2022 ought to convince us that America needs a great spiritual Awakening. If not now, WHEN? Here's the column I wrote a couple of months before the 3-12-05 Brookfield shooting:
"Why does God allow such things to happen?"
"If there is no God, what makes the next Kleenex pop out?" — anonymous
"If God allows such things to happen, He must be cruel." — anonymous
"non sequitur, n; (Latin) it does not follow" — Webster
I RECENTLY mentioned that I think we are living in the time described by the Bible as "the time of the Great Hatred" (Hosea).
" . . For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there shall be famines and pestilences and earthquakes in diverse places . . . And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another." — Matthew
Well, in consideration of Japan's 2011 tsunami, I want to repost the article I posted on New Year's day in 2005 — shortly after the Indonesian quake and great tsunmi of December 2004. A friend of mine said that it was one of my best columns. Here are at least a few excerpts.
— www.RenewAmerica.com/columns/Dahlgren/050101 —
Atheists, agnostics, and doubting Thomases do not "feed" on the WORD (instead they focus on talking points, catchphrases, and non sequiturs). In recent years, almost any pithy or overused phrase might end up being referred to as a non sequitur, but I'm talking about the original meaning: in logic: a conclusion or inference which does not follow from the premises. Darwinism is such an "inference"! It was even based upon deliberately-chosen faulty premises, which is even worse. Start with a fallacious premise and you will end up with fallacious conclusions, given enough time!
Atheists always ask, "If there's a God, why does He allow such things to happen?" Turning the question into its unstated premise, it is essentially: "If there were a God, he/it wouldn't allow such things to happen" (another faulty premise leading to many faulty non sequiturs).
At times such as this one, we need to get "back to the basics" with a child-like Faith. Someone sent me a cartoon this week showing a little boy in prayer, and he says to God, "Things are going pretty well here in school and everything. Is there anything You need?"
Believe it or not, the Word says that there are some things God needs!
A) "I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before Me for the land [as Moses did], that I should not destroy it." — Ezekiel 22
B) Another thing God needs is people who are "ready to give an answer to every man who asks you a reason for the hope that it in you" — as Peter said — or "give an answer to an honest question."
Darwin's faulty premise that growth in scientific knowledge would lead naturally away from God, has not proven to be a credible premise in actual practice. The more we know, the less we really know, if you know what I mean, and about 2/3 of Americans refuse to accept Darwinism or macro-evolution (adaptations may produce changes, but they say nothing about origins).
On December 10, 2004 the AP said, dateline New York, "A British philosophy professor who has been a leading champion of atheism for more than five decades has changed his mind. He now believes in God — more or less — based on scientific evidence and says so on a video released yesterday. Antony Flew, 81, has concluded that some sort of intelligence or first cause must have created the universe. A super-intelligence is the only good explanation for the origin of life and the complexity of nature, Flew said from England." — Seattle Times, 12/10/04
"UNCOMMON DISSENT: Intellectuals Who Find Darwinism Unconvincing" is a recently published book by William A. Dembski. Scientific studies analyzed by the National Institute for Healthcare Research have shown that religious activity increases one's life expectancy (and the more public the religious activity — active worship and church volunteer work, etc. — the longer the life).
P.S. I'm sorry, and so is God, that so many lives are cut short. He's going to click on the "pause" button (maybe soon) on "nation against nation" and all the anger, bitterness, and hatred.
PPS: And our demons will be restrained. "Cut the days short for the elect's sake," Father.© Curtis Dahlgren
The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.