Friday, September 21, 2012

Needless deaths - could it be different?

We are all affected when we hear of someone being murdered in the course of their work life. This is especially pertinent when the victims are people involved in public duties i.e. police, nurses, teachers, firemen etc. We feel that our freedom has been violated and we are more vulnerable as a result. The murders of PC Nicola Hughes and PC Fiona Bone are just the most recent examples of the violent and sick society that we live in. Sadly this is not a lone incident, as it is not long since we mourned the death of PC David Rathband who found life impossible to go on living after losing his sight  as a result of violent crime in July 2010.

Can we do anything to change the course that society is on or is it just something that we have to live with?

I know that what I believe is not popular but I believe that it is the truth. The Bible teaches that 'righteousness exalts a nation and sin is a reproach to any people". Our society is now so far removed from the word of God (the Bible) that the basic principles that govern behaviour and cultivate a good society have been lost. The reason we need laws, police etc is because we all have a bias to do what is self centred and wrong. Thankfully this does not manifest itself in the grosser forms of evil in every individual but we all do things that are wrong and have the capacity to do all sorts of evil.  The Bible states the case plainly when it says 'for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God'. God's standard is majestic and not just at the level of rule keeping and ticking boxes.  The bible teaches that the heart of man is deceitful and desperately wicked. This is the potential that we saw unleashed in these acts of violence.

What can we say then about good citizens like PC Hughes and PC Bone? They, like us, had a sense of justice, they wanted to improve society and they gave their lives to see that happen. As one of their senior officers promised when he was being interviewed his aim is to make sure they did not die in vain. My prayer is that they will succeed in this.

As I close can I give you some hope. Things can be different! This is precisely what the message of Jesus, his death and resurrection is all about. Christ died for our sins, he knew that we could not save ourselves or improve our society without his redeeming grace and forgiveness. He is willing to forgive those who confess their sin and accept his forgiveness. When this happens in the experience of the individual they become a whole new person, old things pass away, all things become new. Believe me, I have seen it in the lives of the most unlikely individuals.

Yes we do need great police officers on the beat, we need laws and law enforcement to prevent tragedies like we have witnessed reoccuring but we need to preach the life changing and soul saving gospel of Jesus Christ to reform the people of our country from the inside out.

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