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Bible Ballistics: Vol. 14 No. 21  Why Is Violence Violent???

 

What is violence?  We usually connect it with crime, and that is a suitable use of the word, but I think it goes beyond that, for it goes to the heart of man; and our culture is drowning trying to assign it to other things.  Most of you know by now, that my daughter was murdered recently, and just last week there was a conference held to discuss and try to avert the tide of violent crimes in a nearby city, particularly violence in the ‘domestic’ arena of our culture; and I’d like to address that issue today.  There are several definitions to “violent/violence”:

Violence: swift and intense force…

…rough or injurious physical force, action or treatment…

…damage through distortion or unwarranted alteration

And I believe the most apropos for our day—

…rough or immoderate vehemence, as of feeling or language… 

The key here being “immoderate vehemence”–

Immoderate:  not moderate….  Exceeding just or reasonable limits; excessive; extreme…without bounds.

Violence is “violent” because it is the result of abandoning God’s Word, His ways, and His “bounds”!  Rather than peacefulness and moderation (which used to be taught as virtues to be pursued but are now ridiculed as unnecessary and restrictive) we have turned loose a culture with no moorings of reason at all, where hate is rampant, with or without warrant.  We have created a mindset of entitlement, which has bred at least two generations expecting to be fed, pampered, coddled, and entertained at any cost, with no regard to the affect it may have on others—even if they have to steal, kill and destroy!  That sounds familiar—there is an enemy to our life and souls!

The thief cometh not,

but for to steal,

and to kill,

and to destroy:

I am come that they might have life,

and that they might have it

more abundantly.”  John 10:10

Just because it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duke—it may not be a “duck”; but you may need to “duck” for cover in Jesus!

There is a way that seemeth right

unto a man,

but the end thereof

are the ways of death.”  Proverbs 16:25

Jesus referred to this very thing in His sermon on the Mount.

Enter ye in at the strait gate:

for wide is the gate,

and broad is the way,

that leadeth to destruction,

and many there be

which go in thereat:

14 Because strait is the gate,

and narrow is the way,

which leadeth unto life,

and few there be

that find it.

15 Beware of false prophets,

which come to you in sheep’s clothing,

but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

16 Ye shall know them

by their fruits.

Do men gather grapes

of thorns,

or figs

of thistles?

17 Even so every good tree

bringeth forth good fruit;

but a corrupt tree

bringeth forth evil fruit.

18 A good tree

cannot bring forth evil fruit,

neither can a corrupt tree

bring forth good fruit.

19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit

is hewn down,

and cast into the fire.

20 Wherefore by their fruits

ye shall know them.”   Matthew 7:13-20

Jesus warns us to beware of the ‘actions’ or fruit of the people around us, for there is that “way that seemeth right” that isn’t!  We live in a world gone crazy with listening to pretty talk that is in total opposition to God’s Word and God’s ways!  Yet it feels good, it appeases the flesh, and it leads to hell!  I know I quote this passage often, but it is an important message that we need to hear, for we live in the ‘evil day’!  What/who are you listening to?

See then

that ye walk circumspectly,

not as fools,

but as wise,

16 Redeeming the time,

because the days are evil.

17 Wherefore be ye not unwise,

but understanding

what the will of the Lord is.

18 And be not drunk with wine,

wherein is excess;

but be filled

with the Spirit;

19 Speaking to yourselves

in psalms

and hymns

and spiritual songs,

singing

and making melody

in your heart

to the Lord;

20 Giving thanks

always

for all things

unto God

and the Father

in the name

of our Lord Jesus Christ;

21 Submitting yourselves

one to another

in the fear of God.” Ephesians 5:15-21

We must make a choice!  We must decide what “government” we will align ourselves with—The God who Reigns–or the god of this world?  Have you allowed the light of God to shine in your heart or are you blinded by the enemy of your soul?

Therefore seeing we have this ministry,

as we have received mercy,

we faint not;

2 But have renounced

the hidden things of dishonesty,

not walking in craftiness,

nor handling the word of God deceitfully;

but by manifestation of the truth

commending ourselves to every man’s conscience

in the sight of God.

3 But if our gospel be hid,

it is hid to them

that are lost:

4 In whom the god of this world

hath blinded the minds

of them which believe not,

lest the light of the glorious gospel

of Christ,

who is the image of God,

should shine unto them.

5 For we preach not ourselves,

but Christ Jesus the Lord;

and ourselves

your servants

for Jesus’ sake.

6 For God,

who commanded the light

to shine out of darkness,

hath shined in our hearts,

to give the light

of the knowledge

of the glory of God

in the face of Jesus Christ.”                        2 Corinthians 4:1-6

Are you on the throne of your own heart or have you bowed before the Cross of Jesus Christ to receive His forgiveness and salvation—receiving HIS peace in place of the violence of the world?

Giving thanks unto the Father,

which hath made us meet to be partakers

of the inheritance

of the saints in light:

13 Who hath delivered us

from the power of darkness,

and hath translated us

into the kingdom of his dear Son:

14 In whom we have redemption

through his blood,

even the forgiveness of sins:”   Colossians 1:12-14

It’s all about Jesus—not about you/me!  For you see we wrestle not against other people but against the forces of evil in this world.  And until we recognize that God is still God, and the rules haven’t changed—It’s why Jesus came–we will flounder without hope.

For unto us a child is born,

unto us a son is given:

and the government

shall be upon his shoulder:

and his name shall be called

Wonderful, Counsellor,

The mighty God,

The everlasting Father,

The Prince of Peace.

7 Of the increase

of his government

and peace

there shall be no end,

upon the throne of David,

and upon his kingdom,

to order it,

and to establish it

with judgment

and with justice

from henceforth

 even for ever.

The zeal of the LORD of hosts

will perform this.”  Isaiah 9:6-7

Will you let Jesus rule in your heart; be at home in your heart or will you continue to pursue your own way and find yourself among the ‘violent’ ones who reject God.  Jesus has given His all—His own blood for our salvation—for you and me!  What have you done with His gift?  If you have received His salvation, does your life reflect His glory or the glory of yourself and the world?  We are to bow before Him and have His mind of holiness and servanthood on our lives.  Even though we live in a culture of selfishness and greed; a culture of me, me, me—”I will have my own way, and I don’t care what God says”!  How about you?  Do you know God and His Word?  God IS our only hope, and He enables us to walk in His Spirit and His Way, rather than the “way that seemeth” right (for now)!

Let this mind be in you,

which was also in Christ Jesus:

6 Who, being in the form of God,

thought it not robbery

to be equal with God:

7 But made himself of no reputation,

and took upon him the form of a servant,

and was made in the likeness of men:

8 And being found in fashion as a man,

he humbled himself,

and became obedient

unto death,

even the death of the cross.

9 Wherefore God also

hath highly exalted him,

and given him a name

which is above every name:

10 That at the name of Jesus

every knee should bow,

of things in heaven,

and things in earth,

and things under the earth;

11 And that every tongue

should confess

that Jesus Christ is Lord,

to the glory of God the Father.

12 Wherefore, my beloved,

as ye have always obeyed,

not as in my presence only,

but now much more in my absence,

work out your own salvation

with fear

and trembling.”  Philippians 2:5-12

So, my question for us today is, “Who’s in control of your heart and life?”  Are you living in excess and sin, or moderation by The Spirit of Christ?  Is your life so full of the world that there is no room for Jesus?  Or will you bow before Him as Lord of All?  Do you know God and His Word or are you walking your own way?  Will you get into God’s Word so that you will know what God says?  Or will you keep cussing, fussing, drinking and holding onto your ‘stinkin’ thinkin’?  The choice is yours, but choose wisely, there is a test—and I can’t help but think that it is nearer than we can even imaging.

Study to shew thyself approved unto God,

a workman that needeth not to be ashamed,

rightly dividing

the word of truth.”  2 Timothy 2:15

All scripture

is given by inspiration

of God,

and is profitable

for doctrine,

for reproof,

for correction,

for instruction in righteousness:

17 That the man of God

may be perfect,

throughly furnished

unto all good works.”  2 Timothy 3:16-17

And one last thing, remember that what you’re living is teaching more about life to your children than anything you can say, or any instruction that you can give them—as an old adage says, “What the parents do in moderation, the children will do in excess!”  If you live a life that marginalizes God, your children are likely to exclude Him totally and miss heaven all together.  That is the ultimate ‘violence’!   God gave Moses the perfect plan in Deuteronomy 6, I’ll share just a small portion of verses with you, and I recommend that you take some time to read and study the whole chapter.

And thou shalt love the LORD thy God

with all thine heart,

and with all thy soul,

and with all thy might.

 6 And these words, which I command thee this day,

shall be in thine heart:

7 And thou shalt teach them diligently

unto thy children,

and shalt talk of them

when thou sittest in thine house,

and when thou walkest by the way,

and when thou liest down,

and when thou risest up.

8 And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes.

9 And thou shalt write them

upon the posts of thy house,

and on thy gates……

…20 And when thy son asketh thee

in time to come, saying,

What mean the testimonies,

and the statutes,

and the judgments,

which the LORD our God

hath commanded you?

21 Then thou shalt say unto thy son,

We were Pharaoh’s bondmen in Egypt;

and the LORD brought us out of Egypt

with a mighty hand:”  Portions of Deuteronomy 6:5-21

If we’ll follow God truly and faithfully—others will ask why!  How about you—will you follow Him?  I pray that you will choose HIM!  What is your life telling others, especially your children?  Do they see Jesus or the world?

Amen and Amen!!!