A letter to the editor today in the editorial pages of my local newspaper caught my attention. The writer lamented yesterday’s slaughter of 27 innocents in Newtown, Connecticut – as we all do. Then he identified the culprit – guns.
We’ve never heard of a “mass-knifing” claiming so many victims, he pointed out. His implication was that, if we scrap the Second Amendment, there will be no more funerals for victims of mass murder.
Of course, nothing could be further from the truth.
Timothy McVeigh did not use a gun in 1995 when he killed 168 people, including 10 children, at the Alfred P.Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. His weapon was ammonium nitrate, a common agricultural fertilizer, and nitromethane, a motor racing fuel.
Mohammed Atta and his fellow jihadis did not use guns to kill 2,996 men, women and children in their 2001 attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. They used fuel-laden jetliners.
So guns are no more responsible for yesterday’s massacre in Newtown than fertilizer and racing fuel was responsible for the carnage in Oklahoma City and commercial jets for the terror attacks in New York City in Washington, D.C.
There is, however, one common thread in the atrocities committed by McVeigh, by Atta and his fellow terrorists and, by young Adam Lanza. They were all, everyone of them, operating under demonic influence.
Indeed, the Apostle Peter warned us, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.”
And the Apostle Paul echoed, “We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
The devil preys upon those who do not have God in their lives, using them to kill, steal and destroy. He also manipulates for his evil purposes those who practice false religion, like Atta and his fellow Islamist jihadis.
That is why those of us who are Christ followers must be vigilant in our prayers, asking the Almighty to maintain a hedge of protection around our families, our friends and our communities.
For He promises the faithful, “No weapon formed against you will prosper.”