Overcoming the spirit of conflict surrounding us

I have never understood why people believe rioting solves anything. The current wave of violence spreading over America’s cities is crazy, unwarranted and obviously sparked by something other than a verdict in one court case. What is happening now is totally disproportionate in relation to the cause. In other words, the court case involved was NOT important enough to justify the rage, hatred and violence taking place.

Among the many things God frowns upon, rioting (or wantonness in the New Testament) ranks near the top of the list. There is absolutely no justification, from God’s point of view, for a crowd to run wild, throwing rocks through windows, setting vehicles on fire and physically injuring bystanders. God never told His people to riot against Pharaoh or against the Roman occupation. Rioting is never God’s way of dealing with a situation.

Riots are self-serving, disruptive and injurious to whatever the cause is. Riots solve nothing and in reality make a situation worse. I lived through the horrendous race riots of the late 1960’s and I can verify that nothing good came out of them. All they did was foster hate and destroy property.

People are simply looking for an excuse to riot. When a team wins the World Series, Super Bowl, NBA championship etc, there seems to always be a riot afterward. Why and how could winning a championship justify the destruction of property? It is all so absurd to me.

I see nothing wrong with having a demonstration as long as it is peaceful and does not break any laws. But, when a demonstration turns violent, the very cause being demonstrated against (or for) is quickly forgotten and replaced with the pent up desire for revenge. Are not the riots currently gripping this country merely the manifestation of the incredible anger and bitterness millions of people feel with respect to race?

In God’s sight there is neither male nor female, bond nor free, black or white etc. Within the Body of Christ, Christians are supposed to be “color blind”, but how many really are? Some of the most vicious examples of prejudice, bigotry, hatred and the desire to injure or destroy are found within the faith that is supposed to preach peace and manifest love.

If God’s people would stop attacking each other and instead reach out in honesty, understanding, love and compassion; we could do our part to generate an attitude of peace instead of a climate of animosity. This world is so full of hate that if Christians don’t watch out, they will become a part of the problem instead of a catalyst for finding solutions.

Just because the world is full of bad things should not give us an excuse to do bad things to each other. Just because the world is full of rage, anger, sarcasm, pride and injustice does not justify us manifesting the same things. We are supposed to be separate from this world and live on a higher plane which is the love, mercy and grace of God manifested in forgiveness, honesty and reconciliation.


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