Saturday, December 15, 2012

A pastor's response to the Newtown School shootings

My friend Pastor Phil Andrukaitis of the First Baptist of South Portland Maine wrote this essay in response to the massacre of children in an elementary school that occurred yesterday in Newtown CT. I hope it blesses you as it did me:

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“A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation and bitter weeping, Rachel weeping for her children, refusing to be comforted for her children, because they are no more” (Jeremiah 31:15; Matthew 3:18). The same bitter weeping for the twenty children and six adults of Sandy Hook Elementary School is being heard all over our country this evening.

It sickens our hearts to realize young innocent lives were violently murdered in the city of Bethlehem when Jesus was a toddler, but also during this 2012 Christmas season as Christians prepare to celebrate God’s greatest gift, the birth of Christ The Savior.

Christians, let us not lose heart in the midst of this awful tragedy, perpetrated by a wicked person. No doubt, many individuals may point to this incident as evidence that God is not all-powerful or all loving. They will ask with an accusatory tone, "Why didn’t You stop this twenty-year-old man who was hell-bent on fulfilling his evil plans?" Perhaps the best response to their question is answered with passionate prayers and compassionate deeds because our hope is in God.

God answered this evil deed and every evil deed committed against man when He sacrificed His Son on the cross for our sins and raised Him from the grave. The cross is the ultimate expression of God’s love and compassion and the resurrection is the ultimate display of God’s power over death and evil.

Let us continue to pray for these grieving families, teachers, students, and all the authorities God has appointed over us to restrain evil. Mourn with those who mourn. And let us believe that God will bring good and glory out of this horrific event, just as He did on Mount Calvary.

And may the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, guard our hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Amen.

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