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Violence for Its Own Sake

April 24, 2022

File:Classic Walther PPK.jpg

Classic Walther PPK/S, .380 cal., Author Tomascastelazo, © Tomas Castelazo, Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0)

  • On an ordinary Tuesday, at least 29 passengers were injured in a shooting on a Brooklyn, NY subway [1].  Many more in the area were traumatized.
  • The weekend before, a 16 y.o. girl was killed and 2 other teens shot walking home from school in the Bronx [2].  The victims were not the intended targets.
  • That same weekend, 2 died and 10 were injured during a shooting at a birthday party in a Cedar Rapids, IA nightclub [3].
  • One man was killed and 5 others shot at a house party in Elgin, IL (a satellite of Chicago considered the quintessential midwestern town) [4].
  • Earlier, a shooting occurred in Sacramento, CA in which 6 were killed and 12 injured [5].  This was Sacramento’s second mass shooting in a matter of weeks.

The list here is by no means a full tally of the gun violence which occurred in America during that particular 10-day period.

Much of this was violence for its own sake — for the twisted “thrill” of taking a life, perhaps revenge over some real or imagined slight.

We need hardly be told that this is not how Christians are to resolve conflict (1 Peter 3: 9).  How though are Christians to respond to such a barrage of distressing news?

The natural reaction is one of discouragement — anger at the state of the world, coupled with a feeling of helplessness.  While we cannot ignore these feelings, we must not let them fester.

Satan is the present ruler of our world (Matt. 4: 8-9; Eph. 6: 12).  But that ruler will be cast out (John 12: 31; Rev. 20: 10).  In the end, God will triumph [6].

Meanwhile, we must not allow discouragement to keep us from doing the good within our power.  We must not let our love of God grow cold.

That is Satan’s ultimate purpose for senseless violence.

And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold” (Matt. 24: 12).

[1]  Washington Post, “Shooting incident at Brooklyn subway station leaves at least 29 injured” by Emmanuel Felton et al, 4/12/22,

[2]  NBC News/New York 4, “1 Teen Dead, 2 Wounded in Shooting Outside Bronx High School” by Associated Press, 4/8/22,

[3]  NBC News, “Man charged with murder in Iowa club shooting that left 2 dead, 10 injured” by Associated Press, 4/12/22,

[4]  Chicago 5 News, “1 Killed, 5 Injured in Mass Shooting During Party at Elgin Apartment”, 4/10/22,

[5]  Sacramento Bee, “6 killed, 12 hurt in Sacramento shooting; police find gun, search for ‘multiple shooters'” by Sam Stanton et al, 4/4/22,

[6]  Seattle PI, “God and good will triumph over evil” by Billy Graham, 6/11/07,


  1. My wife and I attended a house church in another suburb yesterday morning (our Saturday). Someone shared this analogy: satan built his sandcastle on the beach, but Jesus was the tide! Amid all the sadness, as we labour for the Lord, I have to remind myself of that clear Easter hope for all seasons. Maranatha!

  2. All respect for life, morals, respect of others has gone down the tubes and its only going to get worse until Jesus comes back. We gotta’ hang onto Him.

    • Yes, may the Lord return soon.

    • Respectfully, what about being salt and light in this present needy world? Is Jesus not in charge of this world, even now as bad as it is? ‘Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven…’ The kingdom (rule of Christ) is both past, present and future: the kingdom has come, is coming and will come. Therein lies my hope, yes, in Christ alone, through his people.

      • You are right, Erroll. We have the privilege — and the charge — of being God’s hands and feet in this fallen world. We must not forget that.

  3. Iso sad Ann. I dont understand personally someone wanting to be the hand of suffering and death. An evil heart always finds a way to be evil from the beginning of mankind. The only way out of evil is a changed heart by God.

    • Yes, the Bible speaks of God replacing our hearts of stone with hearts of flesh for a reason (Ezek. 35: 26).

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