Sunday, October 4, 2015

A Sin Problem

"We Don't Have a Gun Problem.  We have a Sin Problem."

I saw this on social media the other day, in reference, I am sure, to the shooting at the community college in Umqua, Oregon.

We have a Sin Problem.


 I'm a pastor.  It's hard to argue with that.  We do have a sin problem.  We also have a gun problem, which is not to say that I believe that all that we have to do is get rid of all of the guns, if we could even do that.  But yes, we have a sin problem, and yes, I also think that we have a gun problem as well, which is to say, that our sin problem has, at least in part, to do with guns.

Since sin is one of my specialties, let's talk about the sin problem.  I am not sure, but I suspect that when  some people say "we have a sin problem" (rather than a gun problem), they are talking about the individuals who do evil with guns, that the problem is not with guns themselves, but guns in the hands of evil, disturbed people.  It is a problem of individual sin.

But what do you do about that?  There have always been sinners; there will always be sinners.  The increase in these random acts of violence reveal something else about us, not just as individuals, but as a culture.

And then there is our inability to take some sort of action -- not to eliminate evil -- we can never totally eliminate evil.  But our inability to do something, anything, to take any steps, to even talk about what might work, to protect the vulnerable against acts of evil -- this also is sin.

We have a sin problem.

My fear is that somehow saying this will seem like enough, that someone will say, "we have a sin problem" and "let's pray about it", without realizing that the next step, after praying about it, might be to listen, really listen to what God wants us to do about it.  The next step is to repent, to change our mind, to change our ways, to change ANYTHING.

We have a sin problem.

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