God spoke to the children of Israel saying, "I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants"(Deut. 30:19 NASV). Unfortunately, Israel ultimately chose death in the sense they rebelled against God's order bringing about the destruction and subsequent captivity of first the kingdom of Israel and then the kingdom of Judah.
Rebellion against God and His ways leads to consequences in every area of society.
God's law of the harvest, set forth in Galatians 6:7 is still in force today. Paul told the Galatian believers, "Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap"(Galatians 6:7 NASV). America is now reaping the bitter harvest of the seeds of violence and the abandonment of principles of life which have been sown over the last 40 years.
The Terri Schiavo case demonsntrates how far we have fallen as a society. Who would have thought we would ever tolerate the forced starvation of an innocent woman whose only crime was her inablity to feed herself.
Some other culture of death chickens are nnow coming home to roost for our society. The state of Florida is reeling from two brutal incident perpetrated on young girls in just the last few weeks. Last weekend, we discovered the grisly truth concerning the disappearance of 13 year old Sarah Lunde, who recently exchanged a troubled lifestyle for the grace and mercy of God that comes through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
Sarah has just returned home from a Christian camp with her newfound friends. At approximately 9:00pm., she asked her 17 year old brother to go out and get her somethinng to eat. Her brother left, but he did not return until 4:00am the next morning. Discovering the front door open and Sarah missing, he called the police.
When I read this story last Monday morning, I prayed that the scenario we have all seen played out too many times would not apply in this case. But alas, we now know tht this precious 13 year old girl, whose life was yet to begin in earnest, was murdered by confessed killer David Onstott, a once convicted rapist who was freed from jail to prey on another victim. So far, the news has been that Sarah was not sexually molested, but rather killed in a fit of rage when David didn't find Sarah's mother at home and an argument broke out between David and Sarah.
Just a few short weeks ago, we were all subjected to the story of 9 year old Jessica Lunsford who, like Sarah, was abducted and murdered by a convicted sex offender. This depraved individual has been arrested 24 times over 30 years accumulating a rap sheet that telegraphed to anyone who cared to look that he was literally a murder looking for a place to happen. He sexually molested this beautiful, vibrant, 9 year old, killed her, and disposed of her body. God forgive us as a society if swift justice is not administered to both of these men who are the very essence of evil.
We should not miss the important connective strands in these two stories. Both crimes demonstrated a total disregard for life and one of the crimes was sexually motivated. As a society, we hvae glorified violence to the point of making it hum drum. Beginning with the slasher movies of the 70's our culture has devalued life, turning horrible acts of violence and sexual depravity into avenues of entertainment. The desensitization of our society has now reached epic proportions. We seem to absorb crimes like those against Sarah and Jessica as merely the price we pay to live in a world where sex and violence are considered forms of entertainment.
How can we rescue our culture from the brink of self-destruction? When can we expect to see an end to the headlines screaming out the news that another young, innocent girl has been kidnapped and murdered?
The end will come when we wake up and realize we must turn away from our national obsession with sex and violence. When movies, TV, video games, the web, and magazines stop glorifying death and illicit sex we will begin to see a decline is this kind of behavior.
When our justice system decides to deal swiftly and finally with depraved killers instead of locking them up for a few years, pronouncing them fit for society, and then releasing them to rape and kill again, we will see a reversal of this disturbing trend.
Finally, the violence will end when we cry out to God, confessing our national obsession with sex and violence and begging Him for His mercy and forgiveness. Until then, how many more tears will be shed for the most innocent of our culture? How many more times will I turn away in disgust from a news story involving the death of a young girl?
May God in heaven help us to see when we so seeds of sexual immorality and violence the harvest will be bitter indeed.