What is it that drives some people over the edge? What is it that will motivate them to be defiant, to do the unreasonable? To do, what is to them, the unthinkable? Is it exclusively rebellion and sin that can cause an otherwise reasonable, law-abiding citizen to carry out outrageous actions?
I believe that it is. Whether it is the rebellious person breaking the law, the pride of an overzealous “enforcer,” or a misunderstanding of a situation, one can usually trace it back to our sinful nature.
Jesus Christ did not come to eliminate the law but to fulfill it. We all deserve the death penalty for our sins. His death on the cross paid our penalty. We deserve judgment and have already been found guilty. No high powered attorney can negotiate a plea deal for us. We are powerless to remove our guilt through any effort of our own. It is only through faith in Jesus Christ.
We are a nation of laws. There are individuals who have no respect for some of the laws men have implemented. Some individuals break laws because they are ignorant of the fact that they exist. There are other laws believed to be unjust or obsolete and irrelevant so they choose to ignore or disobey them. Sometimes, however, there are occasions when just laws can be administered unjustly by those entrusted with their enforcement.
Christianity is faith, that at its core is a message of forgiveness, and yes, tolerance. Those who follow Christ are to strive to become more like Jesus. He suffered unspeakable injustice for our sake–and he tolerated it. He asked that God forgive us, knowing we didn’t comprehend the magnitude of our sin.
Luke 24:34 “Then Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them. They do not know what they are doing.’ ”
We are able to forgive because Christ forgave us. Period.
It is not “preaching” against the evils of societal injustice that will prevent outrageous actions. It isn’t billboards, bumper sticker slogans, protests, or PSA’s that will end bullying, intolerance, and violence. Nor will it end racism, sexism, age-ism, or any other “ism” for that matter. It is not more laws to dictate thought and speech that will reign in a sinful heart. It is the love of Christ in the heart of mankind.
1 John 4:19 “We love Him because He loved us first.”
In a nation growing increasingly intolerant of Christianity, we may continue to see outrageous and violent actions from our citizens. True followers of Jesus Christ may be be silenced or persecuted for their faith but will strive to forgive others as He has forgiven them. Those perpetrating evil will continue, oblivious to their sinful nature. Those who claim to believe in Jesus, but do not follow Him (as do the demons) and those who reject Him, may become enraged–with nothing to restrain their intolerance of injustice.
There is only One Way to forgiveness and reconciliation.
John 14:6 Jesus said, “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one can go to the Father except by Me.” (NLV)
Do you need to be reconciled through Jesus–free to be reconciled others? How do you think this reconciliation would change your life? Have you seen the movie Woodlawn?