Tag Archives: massacre

DEMONS AND MARTYRS

DEMONS AND MARTYRS

By Carolyn Dale Newell

But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come… and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived.

2 Timothy 3:1, 12-13 NKJV

In the span of five weeks, we have witnessed horrific tragedies. Pure evil exploded with the Las Vegas massacre, the NYC terrorist in a rental truck, and now, a church massacre in a tiny Texas town. If a church is no longer sacred, what is?

I could not wrap my head around the first report which said the congregation was shot while praying. I know what the Bible says, but how does God allow His children to be slayed during prayer?

I consulted my pastor, and he explained how these slaughtered Christians were special. Like Stephen, they became martyrs. I know, this type of thinking is difficult. We think of multiple funerals and lives taken from children, but they were transported directly into the throne room of God.

Our humanness cannot comprehend the beauty of a Christian’s martyrdom. We see the grief and a life cut short. We need to get our minds focused on Jesus. Joining Jesus in heaven is the most beautiful moment we will experience. If loved ones could speak to us that may be what they would say.

Later, reports explained the shooting began outside, not necessarily during prayer.

Evil has been present since the Garden of Eden. Cain killed Abel. In Noah’s day, wickedness resulted in a worldwide flood. Moses was born when all Hebrew male children were slaughtered. That heinous act repeated itself when Jesus Christ was born. God allowed Jesus to suffer greatly. His own sinless Son tortured and crucified to save sinful man.

I recall a time when morals were high and crime rates low. From 1900 to 1959 there were a total of 24 mass shootings.

In the early 1960’s The Supreme Court ruled in favor of killing innocent babies, and they decided school prayer was unconstitutional. In 1980, the Ten Commandments were removed from schools. In 1985, all nativity displays in government buildings were deemed unconstitutional.

Since God has been kicked out of schools, the number of mass shootings have climbed to 148 (from 1960-2017). These statistics are from http://www.heraldnet.com/news/the-history-of-mass-shootings-in-the-u-s/

Despite 24/7 news, I really believe there was a time when America was good. The facts speak for themselves. Everyone asks where is God? The USA asked God to leave.

Jesus warned us about the beginning of sorrows (Matt. 24:6-14). There is an eerie resemblance to today’s events in these Scriptures.

Satan, the evil one, has been at work since the beginning. We live among demon possessed people. Many do not want to believe there are demonically controlled people living in 2017 in our nation. Demons are not a thing of the past, nor are they confined to third world countries. What makes a person terrifyingly evil? Demons.

Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, 1 Tim. 4:1NKJV

What do we do? We proceed cautiously, trusting God. We make plans for safety everywhere we go. We protect others like the heroes outside the Texas First Baptist Church. God used the two men not in church. Amazing!

Senseless makes sense to God. Trust Him.

Lord, we cannot understand the violence we see. We know we don’t need to understand it all. We just need to trust you. Help us do that. Shelter us from the demonic acts of our enemy. Deliver us from the evil one. In Jesus’ name, Amen

DIG DEEPER

Read Matthew 24:6-14.

HIKING THE TRAIL

We must realize we will never understand why evil happens. Pray for the protection of your family and church, daily. Study spiritual warfare. Continue to share the love of Jesus.

Copyright 2017 Carolyn Dale Newell.

Healing For Charleston

HEALING FOR CHARLESTON

By Carolyn Dale Newell

For God has not given us a spirit of fear,

But of power and of love and of a sound mind.

2 Tim. 1:7 (NKJV)

Americans are devastated by the news of the massacre at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston South Carolina. Wednesday evening, Dylann Roof entered the African American church, sitting with the people for an hour. Surely, they expressed love to him, but he pulled out a gun and began to shoot. Nine people were killed, and there were three survivors. This was an act of terrorism from the enemy himself, Satan.

Our focus doesn’t need to be on the killer’s motives. It certainly doesn’t need to be on racism or gun control. The focus of the church, the bride of Christ, needs to be on healing. Healing for Charleston and beyond the city limits to the heart of every Christian. We must pray for comfort from the God of all comfort. We must seek the peace that surpasses all understanding.

God is still sovereign. This did not surprise Him. Christians in foreign countries have faced persecution, and now the church in the United States can no longer deny its presence.

Persecution is no stranger to the church. The early church, especially the apostles, faced persecution with boldness, and that is what we must do. Yes, the church in the book of Acts met behind locked doors, not because of fear, but because of wisdom. God doesn’t give us a spirit of fear. Satan takes care of that. God gives us a sound mind to make wise decisions.

The enemy, Satan, comes “to steal, and to kill, and to destroy” (John 10:10). Nine Christians were murdered during a time of Bible study and prayer. These martyrs are now in heaven receiving their crowns. Satan has destroyed the lives of their families and the 3 survivors who must live with the trauma of this tragedy, but we cannot allow Satan to steal love and peace from the church.

How many people will not share the gospel today because of fear? How many visitors will not receive love on Sunday morning because of suspicion? Even worse, will any strangers be turned away from a church because of Satan’s reign of fear?

If we fail to boldly proclaim the gospel, and if we fail to love, we are giving in to Satan’s terrorism. The church will cease to be what God called us to be.

As we move forward, we must pray for boldness. We need the courage of Paul who was not afraid to go to Jerusalem where chains awaited him. He was not afraid to go to Rome where he was beheaded. He wrote from a Roman prison, “In nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death” (Phil. 1:20b).

Pray, church, now more than ever! Pray for healing in Emanuel AME Church. Pray for healing for the families. Pray for Christians everywhere that in spite of the horror of this event, we will love like never before. We will not be silenced by Satan. We will not allow him to sow seeds of discord.  Hatred is of Satan, but love is of God. Now, go share the love of Jesus today!

Copyright 2015 Carolyn Dale Newell.