In the wake of the evil that unfolded in Connecticut last week, I'm struck again by the hope of the gospel -- because it's the only thing that makes sense of the real world in which we live.
As Pastor Douglas Wilson recently wrote: "Sharing the gospel is not a matter of trying to teach nonbelievers the password that will get them into Heaven. Sharing the gospel is an explanation of the world, and it explains all the relevant issues, including our stubborn resistance to any true explanation of the world."
The nonbeliever is hard pressed to say that there is something wrong with this world... and if so, what exactly it might be... and why he considers it to be wrong.
Categories like "wrong" assume that there is a right. And a category like "right" assumes a law that would apply to all people, at all times, in all circumstances. And that kind of thing begins to point in a direction that gives nonbelievers the heebie jeebies.
Pastor Wilson again: "It is not possible to build a culture around a denial of God-given standards, and then arbitrarily reintroduce those standards at your convenience, whenever you need a word like evil to describe what has just happened. Those words cannot just be whistled up. If we have banished them, and their definitions, and every possible support for them, we need to reckon with the fact that they are now gone. Cultural unbelief, which leads inexorably to cultural nihilism and despair, is utterly incapable of responding appropriately to things like this, while remaining fully capable of creating them. In the prophetic words of C.S. Lewis, 'In a sort of ghastly simplicity we remove the organ and demand the function. We make men without chests and expect of them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honour and are shocked to find traitors in our midst. We castrate and bid the geldings be fruitful.'”
The gospel alone provides a credible explanation for why we know that what happened in Connecticut is wrong. And not only wrong, but deserving of sheer judgment.
And, at the same time, the gospel alone provides an answer for the gracious healing of this sin-sick world.
The gospel alone gives us a Savior.