Summary: How must we respond to the evil that took place at Virginia Tech? 1- We must exhibit compassion 2- We must ask God 3- We must not blame 4- We must point to the truth
INTRO.- We all know what took place at Virginia Tech on Monday, April 16th, of this last week. A 23 year-old South Korean Senior student at the school went on a shooting rampage, killing 32 students and professors and then killing himself. Some 15 others were wounded.
You know well about school shootings since it happened here in Jonesboro at Westside School on Tuesday, March 24, 1998.
Cho Seung-Hui, a 23-year-old senior majoring in English, arrived in the United States as boy from South Korea in 1992 and was raised in suburban Washington, D.C., officials said. He was living on campus in a different dorm from the one where Monday’s bloodbath began.
Police and university officials offered no clues as to exactly what set him off on the deadliest shooting rampage in modern U.S. history.
"He was a loner, and we’re having difficulty finding information about him," school spokesman Larry Hincker said.
News reports also said that he may have been taking medication for depression, that he was becoming increasingly violent and erratic, and that he left a note in his dorm in which he railed against "rich kids," "debauchery" and "deceitful charlatans" on campus.
Classmates said that on the first day of an introduction to British literature class last year, the 30 or so English students went around and introduced themselves. When it was Cho’s turn, he didn’t speak.
The professor looked at the sign-in sheet and, where everyone else had written their names, Cho had written a question mark. "Is your name, `Question mark?’" classmate Julie Poole recalled the professor asking. The young man offered little response.
Cho spent much of that class sitting in the back of the room, wearing a hat and seldom participating. In a small department, Cho distinguished himself for being anonymous. "He didn’t reach out to anyone. He never talked," Poole said. "We just really knew him as the question mark kid," Poole said.
Why that young man went berserk and shot those 32 people, only God knows. And now he’s facing his judgment along with those other 32 innocent people.
PROP.- From our text in Romans (and others) let’s consider our response to this evil and to all other forms of evil that take place in life and in our lives. How must we respond? 1- We must exhibit compassion 2- We must ask God 3- We must not blame 4-We must point to the truth
I. WE MUST EXHIBIT COMPASSION (toward the hurting)
Rom. 12:9-10 “Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.” 15 “Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.”
Matt. 9:35-36 “Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.”
ILL.- A man put up a sign in his yard that read: "Puppies for Sale." Among those who came to inquire was a young boy. "Please, Mister," he said, "I’d like to buy one of your puppies if they don’t cost too much." "Well, son, they’re $25."
The boy looked crushed. "I’ve only got two dollars and five cents. Could I see them anyway?" "Of course, maybe we can work something out," said the man. The lad’s eyes danced at the sight of those five little balls of fur.
"I heard that one has a bad leg," he said. "Yes, I’m afraid she’ll be crippled for life." "Well, that’s the puppy I want. Could I pay for her a little at a time?" The man responded, "But she’ll always have a limp."
Smiling bravely, the boy pulled up one pant leg, revealing a brace. "I don’t walk good either." Then, looking at the puppy sympathetically, he continued, "I guess she’ll need a lot of love and help. I sure did. It’s not so easy being crippled." "Here, take her," said the man. "I know you’ll give her a good home. And just forget the money."
Brothers and sisters, how can we not sympathize with hurting people since we, too, hurt at times? We may not have lost a child in a tragic shooting like those at Virginia Tech, but we all suffer hurt and pain at times. Consequently, we need to reach out in love and compassion to others.
President Bush said, “As you draw closer to your families in the coming days, I ask you to reach out to those who ache for sons and daughters who are never coming home.”
There needs to be more compassion in our world and American and in the church! And if it isn’t in the church then it won’t be in the world!