The Police Who Deserve Our Respect

Bad Apples

Every vocation has them: unethical or incompetent individuals who give their profession an undeserved bad name.

But has there been a time in recent memory when the police have been so vilified as they are today? It’s a wonder anyone these days would choose law enforcement for a career.

Granted, there are those wearing badges who are bullies or racists.

They’re the exceptions.

But the majority are public servants in the best sense, courageously willing to be placed in harm’s way, who would pull out their guns only as a last resort.

Think how stressful it must be for those whose duty it is to investigate domestic disturbances, drug trafficking, and other potentially volatile situations in our increasingly violent world.

And what must it be like for their spouses and loved ones?

A call for common sense

Imagine your community without law enforcement: no one to call when you desperately need protection from those who have absolutely no respect for law and order.

Recently I talked with an officer whose duty it is to handle fraud cases. It was obvious he genuinely cared about those who are scam victims.

Everyone should read what the apostle Paul wrote about our obligation to submit to governmental authorities. God has ordained government, he says, to keep order and to restrain wrongdoers. “Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God . . . .” (Romans 13:1-7).

We are to pray for “all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity” (1 Timothy 2:1-2).

In light of all the messiness, danger, and disrespect they must deal with on a daily basis, the police are definitely underpaid and underappreciated.

May the Lord watch over those who watch out for us!

police cars-tagged

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB: http://www.lockman.org/

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When Blood Runs in the Streets

blood-tagged

Murder is satanic.

God warned Cain not to do it, but Cain went ahead and killed his own brother (Gen. 4).

Although Cain was the first human to commit murder, he was not the first murderer. Jesus said of Satan, “He was a murderer from the beginning” (John 8:44).

“For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another; not as Cain, who was of the evil one and slew his brother” (1 John 3:11-12).

Murder is against everything God stands for.

Proverbs 6:16-19 lists seven things God hates, including “hands that shed innocent blood.”

Murder, Paul says, violates the great second commandment, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Romans 13:8-10).

God told Noah that murder is a capital offense because “in the image of God He made man” (Genesis 9:6). Human life is sacred to God and should therefore be sacred to us. Why? Of all God’s creatures, only people are created in His image. Murder is sacrilege.

“Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him” (1 John 3:15).

Unrepentant murderers “will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8; 22:14-15).

Murder in perspective

Abraham explained to the Philistine king why he had said that his beutiful wife Sarah was his sister: “Because I thought, surely there is no fear of God in this place, and they will kill me because of my wife” (Genesis 21:11).

As it turned out, there was some fear of God in that place, but though Abraham was wrong to lie, it is still true that a place where people don’t fear God is a dangerous place indeed!

How much fear of God is there in our nation?

Whether a mass shooting or a single homicide, Satan rejoices, but God grieves.

And God, by the way, knows what it feels like to lose a Son to murder.

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB: http://www.lockman.org/

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The Roots of Violence

One day as I was taking my morning walk near the lake on campus I was witness to a fight. I stood and watched but made no attempt to break it up. Was I wrong?

The two contenders, by the way, were ducks. I don’t know much about bird behavior, but probably this little fracas was normal, perhaps even necessary. In fact, I’m not even sure it was a fight, although with all the wing-flapping and shoving, it certainly looked like one.

Such things in the natural world may be perfectly normal, but what about conflicts between those who have been made in the image of God?

Downward spiral

The world God destroyed in Noah’s day was “filled with violence” (Genesis 6:5, 11-13). Our own world is growing increasingly volatile.

Domestic violence, school fights, bombings, gang warfare, mass shootings—on and on it goes. These continue to rip and tear at the fabric of society. Should we find this disturbing? Or is it just the way it is?

Surely the dark motives underlying human strife are not factors in the world of nature. Can you imagine ducks nursing grudges or feeling hatred or plotting revenge?

Murder, Jesus tells us, begins in the heart (Matthew 15:19). Violence in its various forms is fueled by such factors as pride, prejudice, anger, hatred, envy, greed, and resentment. None of it is admirable; all of it is ugly—all the way from the hidden motive to the bloody deed.

The ultimate solution

“For we also once were foolish ourselves, disobedient, deceived, enslaved to various lusts and pleasures, spending our life in malice and envy, hateful, hating one another. But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us…” (Titus 3:3-5).

Those who follow Christ’s example and teachings not only avoid divisiveness (Titus 3:9-11), but are actively engaged in doing good (Titus 3:8, 14).

Oh, what a difference the gospel makes! Former enemies have become friends. Service replaces strife. Peace reigns in the place of discord.

If only the world understood.

battered woman-tagged

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB: http://www.lockman.org/

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