Have you ever stopped to think about the amount of violence we’re exposed to in our culture? I read a recent study that said the average child today will see 200,000 acts of violence (including 6,000 murders) on television by the time he or she reaches age 18. It’s alarming!
This epidemic of violence in the media is hardening our society to the point where many have become numb when they hear about real problems. We see genocide around the world, murders in our cities, and infanticide in the wombs of many mothers right here in America, and many people don’t even care.
Thousands of years ago, God gave the commandment to the Israelites, “You shall not murder” (Exodus 20:13). And throughout history, the act of wantonly taking the life of another has been condemned… all the way back to Cain and Abel, the children of Adam and Eve. That’s because one of the most horrific results of the sin is hatred between people, which often fleshes out in murder.
So what can we do to counter this epidemic of violence? Well, it begins in the home by creating a culture of life, not death. Be careful about the type of media you and your family allow to enter your mind. Help stem the tide against violence by loving life, not death! (1)
Here’s the vast difference between a godly person and a worldly person. A worldly person just tries to “make it through” dark times. But a godly person trusts and finds God at work in and through all things.
Maybe today, you’re on the receiving end of someone else’s cruel behavior. Or, perhaps you find yourself on the giving end of cruelty. Wherever there is hatred and anger, combat it with the truth wrapped in love. Overcome cruel behavior by fighting evil with good and speaking the truth in love!
“Difficult times will come.” It’s a fact of life, isn’t it? There are good times and bad times in everybody’s life. We are fallen beings living in fallen bodies in a fallen world, surrounded by other fallen people. And that is only going to get worse as we move towards the “last days”.
God allows us to experience the fallenness of life, just like everyone else. It is in our spiritual response to the difficulties of life that God is most glorified.
What is God saying to you through this passage today? If you are experiencing dark times, don’t think it is unusual or that God has abandoned you. God wants you to know that until you go to be with Him, you will have the stress of life in a fallen world. The difference is that God walks through that experience with you, transforming both you and those you touch.
(1) Dr. Jack Graham, “How to overcome evil against you”, PowerPoint Ministries.