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Summary: I am terribly saddened at what took place at appx. 11:30 am on Tuesday April the 20th at Littleton, Colorado, at Columbine High School where Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris, two young men wearing long black trench coats approached the school. In the parkin

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TEXT: 1 Kings 22:51-53

TITLE: WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO THE FAMILY?

I am terribly saddened at what took place at appx. 11:30 am on Tuesday April the 20th at Littleton, Colorado, at Columbine High School where Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris, two young men wearing long black trench coats approached the school. In the parking lot, they began their assault. From there they went into the school toward the school cafeteria, shooting as they went. They proceeded upstairs to the library, still shooting.

Students testified of the ricochet of bullets, running, hiding and witnessing unspeakable horror. Over 30 bombs have been found. The scene has been described as a minefield. The current death tool stands at 15 (11 males, 4 females) including the suspects and one faculty member.

The blame could be put on a lot of people as well as a lot of things. But today, I want to suggest that this might not have happened if the family had been doing its part.

But this isn’t the first time such a thing has happened?

•May 21, 1998 – Springfield, Ore. – A 15 year-old student shot and killed two students and wounded 22 when he opened fire at the Thurston High School

•May 19, 1998 – Fayetteville, Tenn. – A senior at Lincoln county High School, age 18, shot and killed 18 year-old senior Robert Creson.

•April 25, 1998 – Jonesboro, Ark. – Two boys, ages 11 and 13, shot and killed a teacher and four girls at Westside Middle School. Nine girls and one other teacher were wounded.

•December 1, 1998 – Paducah, Ky. – A 14 year-old boy shot and killed three girls at Heath High school. Five others were wounded. The youths targeted were having a prayer meeting.

•October 1, 1997 – Pearl, Miss. – A 16 year-old student shot and killed his ex-girlfriend and another girl at Pearl High School after slitting his mother’s throat. Seven other students were wounded.

So I want to ask you, WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO OUR FAMILIES? Parents have a big influence on their children! Grandparents have a big influence on their grandchildren!

Ahaziah was the 9th king of Israel. He was the son of Ahab, which means he was also the son of Jezebel.

He followed policies which showed evidence of his mother’s pagan influence. After reigning only two years, he “fell through the lattice of his upper room in Samaria” (2 Kings 1:2) and was seriously injured. Sending his messengers to ask Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron, about his recovery, Ahaziah was frustrated when the prophet Elijah interrupted their mission and prophesied Ahaziah’s death. Enraged by Elijah’s predictions, Ahaziah tried to seize him, but the men sent to capture the prophet were destroyed by fire from heaven and Elijah’s prophecy was quickly fulfilled (2 Kings 1:9-17).

The point is he was influenced in a negative way by his parents.

The evil of the world is knocking on our front doors and asking if our children are at home.

It says that it has a message just for them.

It wants to bombard them with alluring information about cults, contraceptives (esp. condoms), open marriage, gay liberation, drinking, drugs, violence, and smoking.

The messages are there and we can’t deny it. The devil and the world would say there is nothing we can do about it. We can’t control the messages or our children. Or can we?

Are the pressures today much different from the deadly lion and a bear that fought a little shepherd boy named David? After those tests of courage, he stood against Goliath and won. Later he refused to take vengeance against the demented king who sought his life.

What child has matched the disappointments and temptations handed Joseph? Despised by his brothers, sold into slavery, blatantly tempted by Pother’s wife, he stuck by his commitment to his master and landed in jail.

Or what child dares to be a Daniel, maintaining his stand for the God of Israel at the risk of his neck?

Or Queen Esther, probably a teenage beauty when she was hustled away to the king’s harem?

How many of our teenagers, like little Samuel, could survive the care of a priest whose too sons turned out to be scoundrels?

Somewhere along the line, in their early home training, these famous young people of the Bible had been greatly influenced in a godly way.

•Daniel came from a priestly stock.

•David’s father Jesse feared the Jehovah-God of his ancestors.

•We know of Hannah’s prayers for Samuel.

•Mordecai visited the palace windows to encourage Esther.

These parents made a significant influence in their children’s lives that gave them the strength to stand when it became necessary.

If we are to stop such tragedies as the one in Colorado, we as parents and grandparents must make a positive influence on their lives.

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