Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Darkness Inside

It has happened before, and will happen again: a disgruntled worker enters his place of business and starts to kill people before taking his own life.

A community is left behind, grieving, to ask all the usual questions and seek in vain for the answers. Were there signs? Could something have been done? Did the shooter's girlfriend dismiss his violent threats, and if not, then why didn't she warn somebody? Why did this happen, and why did the innocent have to suffer?

Since the day that Cain in angry hate ended the life of his own brother, mankind has wrestled with these questions. What causes something to go so wrong in the mind and soul of a man, that killing people seems to be the way to solve whatever problems or ease whatever suffering or vent whatever wrath he is experiencing?

Our materialistic culture will seek materialistic answers. We will look into the man's upbringing and home life, history of any trouble with the law, violent outbursts--or sullen aloofness--and at all the sifting details of a short life.

But while some answer may be culled from all that sifting sand, at a level many people don't even admit to anymore we know that we will not find the answers to the problem of evil in such trivia.

There is a darkness at the heart of man, a darkness wholly inexplicable to the evolutionists, who can't possibly explain how man should have evolved to carry within him the seeds of his own destruction. The shooter in Kentucky was not acting out of motives of self-preservation, after all; and what possible evolutionary reason for suicidal and murderous self destruction could there be?

To the Christian, the answer isn't that difficult--man is not what he was intended to be. That shadow that can drift across his soul until all light and goodness is obscured by something so heavy and dark that it chokes off all impulses to love, kindness, peace, happiness, or joy--that tenebrous weight which crushes grace and destroys hope--it is sin. It is, moreover, Original Sin, which stained us by the actions of our first parents, who chose for us all when they chose to turn away from God and seek power at the hands of the enemy.

And that capacity for sin has weakened us; that allure of the enemy's empty promises is more appealing to us than it would ever be, had we the undarkened intellect and will our first parents enjoyed in the Garden.

Whatever the details of the case in Kentucky, disturbingly like so many other things our eyes have seen, we know that the darkness inside is not a murkiness unfamiliar to us. Though by God's grace we may be far from falling to such a horrible depth, it is no merit of our own that we have been so preserved. When we pray "Lead us not into temptation," it is this sort of trial, this kind of test, we are begging to be spared--and God hears that prayer, and places a loving hand of protection over us, to keep the shadow of evil far from our souls. May it please Him to do so always!

3 comments:

Alexandra said...

"That shadow that can drift across his soul until all light and goodness is obscured by something so heavy and dark that it chokes off all impulses to love, kindness, peace, happiness, or joy--that tenebrous weight which crushes grace and destroys hope--it is sin."

Yes! I was a pro*bation and par*ole officer for 13 years, and it is that simple. Forget the psycho babble. There is right and there is wrong, and without the grace of God any of one of us can succumb to evil. Regardless of our situations, we all make choices - not just in our actions but in our hearts and minds.

Tarcisius said...

"There, but for the grace of God, go I."

matthew archbold said...

Interesting thought you alluded to. The fact that man is the only "animal" who commits suicide. I've often thought about "love" being solely human but never thought to evidence it by proving the opposite. Nice job. Moving post.