When Violent Death Hits Home
I have sent among you the pestilence after the manner of Egypt: your young men have I slain with the sword, and have taken away your horses; and I have made the stink of your camps to come up unto your nostrils: yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the LORD. Amos 4:10
Could it be that when school and mass shootings take place, that it is an indicator that God is judging that nation? It is very possible. Please consider Amos and his warning to the Hebrew people in ancient Israel.
In Amos 4, the Lord sends Amos to give a warning. He preaches that God would send judgment in an effort to see the people turn back to God. Read the chapter if you like. 5 times God says: “Yet have ye not returned unto me.” In each verse, the Lord describes various forms of judgment; taking away food, rain, sending famine, pestilence and more are warned of. Instead of turning to the Lord, the people of Israel are said to have been led away with a hook and a fishhook in verse 2. Like a carrot on a stick, they followed what was in front of them to satisfy their perceived need and actual greed.
When Amos ministered in Israel, the people were still very prosperous. They had wealth. They had money. They had stuff. When God started to take all that away – they kept looking for more material things. Food, money and stuff. They had become so “self-sufficient” that they neglected to turn back to God.
Then in our verse above we find God even begins to allow their children to be “slain with the sword.” This indicates violent deaths for their young people in their land. Anytime a child dies it is particularly difficult for the parents and family. When you add uncalled for violence to the mix, it adds another level of pain. Our prayers go out for all those families who have lost children.
When God judges sin, there is collateral damage. Just like the wind, rain, and sunshine falls on everyone, so does the judgment of God. Not only are the people He is judging affected, but others are affected as well. Look back at the 10 plagues that God judged Egypt with in Exodus. Most of those judgments affected God’s people too. In Amos 4, the seemingly natural weather events like drought impacted everyone.
Back to the school shootings. Whenever young people die violent deaths, it could be part of God’s judgment on that nation. Think of it this way, instead of people turning to God and training their kids to love God (who in turn teaches us to value and cherish human life) we are teaching our kids naturalism, materialism, and humanism. Instead of telling our kids about God, we are told (as a whole) there is “no God.” God wanted His people to turn back to Him and He used Amos to give warning, but when they did not turn back, the Lord finally sent His judgment.
It may not be that God is even judging the specific children that die in a mass shooting. They are the sad casualties of a society that has turned its back on God. Like the weather patterns, everyone is affected. I have believed for years now that abortion is also part of God’s judgment on a people who have rejected Him. Anytime humans start killing the most innocent and needy among us, we are in deep trouble. Abortion is a violent form of killing and is another example of choosing personal (sexual) sin instead of choosing Jesus. In abortion, the pre-born baby is paying part of the price for the parent’s sin. It is a form of judgement on a people who are against God.
Kids are needlessly dying today. May God help us. We must follow the admonition of Amos 4:12 – “prepare to meet thy God.” When homes and families begin teaching the Bible and turn to God through His Son Jesus Christ – then and only then, will lives be changed and human life valued like it should be.