By all accounts the tragedy in Newtown Connecticut was perhaps the worst tragedy in the history of the United States. I am of the opinion the killing of 20 small children and 6 adults at an Elementary School were even more horrendous than the events of 9-11. I say so because this carnage was, in effect, done by us to us, with small little children paying the ultimate price.
In my last article, published by the Sampson Independent on Nov. 2, 2012, entitled, “Faith and the Campaign,” I stated, ”America needs healing now and it will need more healing after the presidential campaign.
But it will never happen until the church understands that its walk with Jesus Christ is based on citizenship in the Kingdom and not membership to any religious and political organization.”
The events at Newtown that has caused so much misery and suffering throughout this country and the world may be just the tip of the iceberg of similar events to come. And what is so sad about the whole situation is that the ones we look to for solace, comfort and leadership doesn’t have a clue as to how to address the current sad state of affairs.
This was very apparent with the Interfaith Prayer Vigil held in Newtown on Sunday following the shooting. Any true follower of Christ should have been disgusted with the entire event.
To begin with there is only one person who has the solution to what ails us, and that is Jesus Christ. So it is amazing that this prayer vigil would include religions that do not recognize Jesus Christ as the one who has been given all power and authority in heaven and on earth. Secondly, whenever a tragedy happens anywhere in this country, we turn to religion and religion will never solve anything. We trot out various religious organizations, with their individual religious attire, religious doctrines and traditional prayers in hopes that somehow things will change for the better. Well, this is what got us here in the first place.
America has become defiled with its approval of a way of life that includes various abominations to the Lord. Same sex marriage, abortion, legalized drug use; the right of every American to possess a weapon of mass destruction, are just a few of the things that has defiled America. And God has clearly said, in Leviticus chapter 18 that whenever, the Land is defiled it must face His wrath and judgment.
In the very beginning God has given us dominion over all that He has created. In other words we are in charge of the land. God will only intervene when what we do interferes with the timetable of his will or when we defile the land and finally when we give him permission to intervene. Notwithstanding, God will not do anything because He has put us in charge and made us stewards over the earth. See Genesis 1:26
The tragedy at Newtown was the result of what we are doing and since no one could have predicted this no one had the opportunity to ask God to intervene. But there is one thing that the people of God can do to prevent such events from happening again, despite any other efforts by politicians and religious groups and churches.
God once said and he is still saying that, “If my people, who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sins, and will heal their land.” Herein lies the #1 problem in America and the world. I mention this verse in my last article but did not give you a more detailed meaning of what God is saying.
The people who are called by His name are those who see themselves as Citizens of the Kingdom of God, and not citizens of the earth. That is why the bible declares to believers, “You are in the world but not of it.” But in order to see yourself in this manner you must first have an understanding of what the Kingdom of God is and what it is all about. Unfortunately, 99% of so called religious faiths are too focused on tooting their own man-made doctrines and agendas instead of seeking first the Kingdom of God. This was evident in the prayer vigil. And as Jesus Christ said to the religious leaders of His day, he is saying the same thing to religious leaders of today. “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites: for you shut up the Kingdom of God against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither permit them that are entering to go in.” — Matthew 23:13.
We must humble ourselves, by admitting that our walk and life with Christ has nothing to do with being a Baptist, Methodist, Catholic, Buddist,
Muslim and etc. We must also humble ourselves by also admitting the solution to what ails us and our neighbors can only be found in Christ and His Kingdom. It cannot be found in a building where we congregate together to play church and to be entertained with music, dancing and great speeches sometimes called sermons. And fmally we must humble ourselves and give the Kings of Kings and the Lord ofLords permission to intervene into our problems by admitting we cannot solve what ails us and what ails this country.
When we do those two things above, then and only then can we pray in such a way that the Lord will hear us. Then and only then can we adequately seek his face. Then and only then can we turn from our wicked ways. And the Lord promises that He will hear us in such a way that causes him to forgive our sins and heal our land. Until then, we will see other tragedies such as Newtown.
(Editor’s note: Pastor Gilbert Owens can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.)