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Sunday, April 21, 2013


“I was there,” said the lady when I found her in her living room watching television. I had waited for her at the appointed place for around fifteen minutes and decided to go to her house to see if she were ill. She swore that she was at the appointed place—even as she sat in her living room. She wasn’t there (probably forgot to go), but she’d never admit it.

“The horse ate the bill,” was a woman’s excuse for not paying. Yeah, right. Either she took her mail to the barn, or the hungry horse came inside the house. And we’re supposed to believe that?

A young woman is sitting in the school office flanked by a school policeman and the principal. She had been fighting another young woman, and the policeman had broken up the scratching, clawing, name-calling fight. The young lady’s father says, “My daughter would never fight another person. She’d never hurt anyone. It’s your fault! She doesn’t deserve suspension.” Caught in the act, but she didn’t do it.

Years ago, people used to laugh at the actor Flip Wilson, who excused every bad action with the phrase “The devil made me do it.” Well, maybe, probably . . . .

This week, when the alleged Boston bombers were identified, their parents claimed it was an FBI set-up. Their sons couldn’t have done it. The boys had never told them they were radicalized. Etcetera.

It makes no difference that there’s photo footage of at least one of the brothers planting his bomb. It makes no difference that the brothers told the owner of the hijacked SUV they were the Boston bombers. It makes no difference they were in possession of explosives and other arms (which they used against police). It makes no difference that the youngest participated in a one-hour shooting standoff with police, when he was discovered bleeding, and hiding in a boat. No, they couldn’t have done it.

You tell me: if a criminal is planning a crime, does he tell his mother? “Mom, I’m thinking about robbing a bank. I plan to do it next Friday at ten o’clock. My accomplice is my friend Buster, and this is how we’re going to pull it off . . . .” No one does that!

Even though a person may seem to be normal, well adapted, intelligent, and all the other adjectives we’ve heard bandied about, if he’s guilty, at one time or another, he made a conscious choice to do wrong.

Was he capable of making a wrong—terribly wrong—choice?

Of course.

The Bible tells us where sin comes from:
For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies (Matthew 15:19).
For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man (Mark 7:21-23).

The Bible also describes the process of sin:
But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death (James 1:14-15).

Could those two young men have been terrorists? Yes.

If they are guilty (as it seems), something was wrong in their hearts.

I honestly feel sympathy for their parents. It’s hard to imagine what they must be going through. I pray for them, that they will come to Christ.

I also understand their denial. Who would think their children capable of such an act?

But, I also think we can learn valuable lessons from this situation. Our children, but for the grace of God, are capable of sinning. We should understand this, since we ourselves are tempted daily. We need to pray for our kids.

Remember Job? Job sent and sanctified them (his ten children), and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually (from Job 1:5).

  • Are we praying for our children, daily? Job offered sacrifices to the Lord for his children every morning.
  • Do we deny that our child might be capable of doing wrong? Everyone is capable of doing wrong when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
  • Do we deny our own wrong actions or thoughts when cornered? We should be honest.
  • Do we make excuses instead of taking responsibility for our actions? Do we make excuses for others?
  • Do we blame someone else (the devil, the FBI, outside influences, etc.) for sinfulness?
Let’s not be in denial!

(All illustrations in this post are true.)

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