GOD’S 2 CENTS
What does the Bible have to say?
The Shooting Tragedy In Connecticut
This message was brought by Pastor Tim Schwindt Sunday morning Jan. 27th. Him and a panel of 3 other Pastors: Senior Pastor Rick Boyes, Pastor Dave Andrews & Pastor Blair Mercer spoke on 4 “World Topics”.
The Other 3 Topics:
- The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy (Pastor Dave) ~ (BLOG here: The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy )
- The Teacher Strike (Pastor Rick) ~ (BLOG here: The Teacher Strike )
- Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters (Pastor Blair) ~ (BLOG here: Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters )
For each topic a list of scriptures were given to use to reference. Here’s the PDF of Questions & Scripture References To All “4″ Topics: Sermons ~ God’s Two Cents
PASTOR TIM’S SERMON NOTES
The Shooting Tragedy in Connecticut
On the morning of December 14, in Newtown, Connecticut, 20-year-old Adam Lanza took one of his mother’s rifles, walked into her bedroom where she was still in bed, and shot her in the head 4 times. He then took her car, drove to Sandy Hook Elementary School, where he had attended years earlier. He walked into the school and shot the principal and the school psychologist, killing them. An employee ran through the halls warning of a gunman on the loose, and someone switched on the intercom, alerting people in the building. Teachers locked their doors and ordered children to hide as shots echoed through the building. Lanza was able to get into a first-grade classroom, and proceeded to murder the teacher and 15 of the 16 children there. Most of them were shot multiple times at close range. The one child who was not shot managed to survive by playing dead and remaining still until the shooting stopped, at which point she ran from the school, covered in the blood of her classmates, and was the first child to escape the building. When she reached her mother, she said, “Mommy, I’m okay, but all my friends are dead.” Lanza then entered another classroom, where the teacher had hidden the children, and told the shooter that they were in the school auditorium. But several of the children then came out of their hiding place out of fear and tried to run for safety, and were shot dead. The teacher tried to put herself between her students and Lanza, but he fatally shot her. A teacher’s aide who worked with special-needs students shielded a six-year-old boy with her body, trying to protect him from the bullets that killed them both. After Lanza realized that he had been spotted by a police officer who had entered the building, he shot himself in the head, taking his own life. By the time it was all over, Lanza had killed 20 students ages 6-7, and six adults. The incident became the second-deadliest school shooting in U.S. history, next to the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre.
1. Why is there so much violence, and will it get even worse than it is now? What does God think about it? Where was God when this happened? Did He care about those children and families as much as the families themselves did?
Genesis 6:11-13 ~ Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence. God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. So God said to Noah, “I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth.”
2 Timothy 3:1-4 ~ There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.
Psalm 10:12-18 ~ You, God, see the trouble of the afflicted; you consider their grief and take it in hand. The victims commit themselves to you; you are the helper of the fatherless. Break the arm of the wicked man; call the evildoer to account for his wickedness that would not otherwise be found out.
2. Did God love Adam Lanza as much as He loved the children Lanza murdered? Do you swallow hard and say “yes” because you think that’s the correct biblical thing to say, even though you can’t imagine how God ever could? What would be your reaction if I suggested that God did love him, but then hated him because of his wickedness? How are we supposed to feel?
Psalm 11:4-7 ~ The Lord examines the righteous, but the wicked, those who love violence, he hates with a passion. On the wicked he will rain fiery coals and burning sulfur; a scorching wind will be their lot. For the Lord is righteous, he loves justice; the upright will see his face.
John 3:16-19 ~ “For God so loved the world… Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.”
3. What should our response be to this tragedy? What can we do about this, if anything?
Proverbs 24:10-12 ~ If you falter in a time of trouble, how small is your strength! Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter. If you say, “But we knew nothing about this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay everyone according to what they have done?
4. What are the right ways for us to protect ourselves or others? Should no one ever have access to a gun, in order to prevent someone like Adam Lanza from obtaining one? Or is it true that the only answer to a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun? That we should allow good people to bear arms, in order to adequately defend themselves and others? Is there a difference between defence and revenge and justice?
Isaiah 10:1-3 ~ “Woe to those who make unjust laws, to those who issue oppressive decrees, to deprive the poor of their rights and withhold justice from the oppressed of my people, making widows their prey and robbing the fatherless. What will you do on the day of reckoning, when disaster comes from afar?”
Romans 12:17-21 ~ Do not repay anyone evil for evil. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
5. Were you glad that Adam Lanza killed himself? Were you especially glad that he did that rather than shoot more children? Would you have felt even more sense of justice if one of the police officers had been able to shoot him dead before he took his own life? What is the appropriate action and response to a man like that? If he hadn’t taken his own life, what would the right consequence or punishment be for him? And would that punishment be better than him taking his own life? Is capital punishment biblically and morally acceptable, or not? Is it ever right to kill in certain circumstances, or is it always murder?
Genesis 9:5-6 ~ “From each human being, I will demand an accounting for the life of another human being. Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind.”
Matthew 5:21-22 ~ “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a fellow brother or sister will be subject to judgment.”
1 John 3:11-15 ~ For this is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another. Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. Anyone who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates a fellow brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.
Additional Scriptures: Exodus 21:12-14; Proverbs 21:7; Hosea 9:15-17; Leviticus 24:17; Isaiah 59:1-9; Isaiah 60:18-19; Matthew 15:18-19; John 13:34; Ephesians 4:26-27, 32; Colossians 3:13