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Volatile Times

6/7 Matthew 24:1-14, 2 Corinthians 5:16-21 #15 Jesus > Everything Neither politics alone nor any show of force can be the sole solution to quell the storm that was unleashed with the murder of George Floyd. It was going to - no, it probably needed to happen, or it would have just continued to simmer beneath the surface waiting to erupt.

It should be self evident that black lives matter, but it has not always been, but it needs to be. Our system in many ways has stacked the deck against the black community. And there is dirty laundry to account for. We cannot afford to let our love grow cold or indifferent. As white people, even with the prospect of any further residual violence and lawlessness, we must elevate justice and love mercy and walk humbly, after all, that is what we asked black people to do for so many years in the face of injustices. This in no way justifies violence.

The fullest appropriate and just charges should be brought against the former officer and accomplices for their heinous criminal action against George Floyd. Justice should be swift. It appears they were trying to make an example of Mr. Floyd so perhaps they should now be made an example.

In pointing out a horrific injustice, it should never automatically be seen as an indictment on the greater whole (i.e. all cops are necessarily bad and or racist, they are not). As a friend who is a law enforcement officer pointed out, “a system without good cops will be far, far worse.” I believe the vast majority of police are very, very good at their jobs. The sooner the removal of a cancer happens for the sake of the whole body, the better. Dealing very specifically, swiftly and commensurate with the crime for the four charged should send a clear loud message to the whole of law enforcement. But attacking the healthy part of the body does no good and is like the proverbial throwing out the baby with the bathwater. Then even worse, is this misguided idea of eliminating law enforcement is a utopian fantasy that will end very, very badly. People are not basically good. We are a sinful. The irony is that the very ones who need the law most are those proposing ridding society of it. And some are falling for it. “The law is not made for the righteous but for the lawbreakers and rebels” (1 Timothy 1:9), and the law needs to be enforced. This is part of our understanding of the gospel. Arbitrarily picking and choosing what and who is criminal and what to enforce and when, (or God forbid not at all) is what will help allow this vicious cycle in which we find ourselves to continue.

Our bigger long-term response moving forward now needs to be one of a renewing work in our communities to raise levels of awareness, accountability, and character in everyone. We must rebuild trust where broken and strengthen good relationships that already exist. Let’s be must be more specific and personal in how we interact with one another, treating each other as image bearers – since we all bear the image of God. And any proposed solution or plan that does not involve reconciliation, repentance and forgiveness does not align with the gospel and cannot not be supported. John Stonestreet said, “We need a population that can govern itself”, which is an inherit beauty of how this country was founded. This will take a whole team effort from a free people if we’re going to pull it off. And of course, we will still need leaders, but they must first and foremost be people of character, not of party, in order to set the right tone and the right course… May God work in us, through us and with us, as we work to make things new.

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