Violence in our society is overwhelming our humanity. We are losing touch with the dignity of being created in the image of a loving God.
The self-centeredness of our choices is pushing us to all types of violence–the physical violence of war, the economic violence of greed, the emotional violence of meanness, the spiritual violence of persecution.
The physical violence is easiest to notice, but it’s not just limited to far off battlefields; it has become seemingly the only way for “good” to win against “evil” in the created battlefields of our movies and games. Games, for God’s sake! Violence has become a way for us to entertain ourselves. It should make us wretch.
Leading up to Christmas, our televisions were bombarded with simulated war games that inserted regular, everyday young people into scenes of war horror with resulting smiles and exuberance. Buy the game and get the thrill of “killing.” Absurd!
And a movie came to theaters carrying the name of a classic children’s novel–“The Hobbit.” It was a feast of violence–fighting, fighting, fighting–unlike the book. It went on and on, and I grew tired. How many ways is it possible to kill an orc?
I am complicit. I loved the “Lord of the Rings” movies and many of the superhero flicks. But the toll is building; the fighting goes on forever and becomes more and more graphic.
Violence is no longer evil. Violence has become a computer-generated drug that has numbed us to the reality of life as God meant it to be live.
But this is not the worst violence. I have never known violence in my home, but I know many people live with it and the fear of it daily. Some people use guns and other available weapons in their homes, but many more use their hands and words as weapons. And the result is the same–destruction.
Weapons in our games. Weapons in our movies. Weapons in our streets. Weapons in our homes.
Jesus wielded no weapons.