1 Timothy 1:8 | Lawless Evil

Today is another day where there is a killing of the innocence without regard to human life at some soft target be it a school, a place of worship, a concert, a nightclub, a workplace, or a retail establishment. My heart breaks. Lawlessness abounds. Right is wrong and wrong is right as society thinks itself enlightened and progressing into supposed fairness and supposed justice.

8 Now we know that the law is good, if one uses it lawfully, 9 understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers 1 Timothy 1:8-9 ESV

One of the things that makes America great is law and order. It is a pardox that I did not understand in my youth. Law allows for freedom. I can safely go where I want because of laws. Anarchy restrains freedom. Without rules then I will live a guarded and fearful life because of the lawless and the murderer. Murder is evil and God has written into our very nature that it is wrong. Outside of the authority of government (war and capital punishment) God grants no person the right to take a life. I don’t need a law to tell me murder is wrong. But the law against murder condemns those who seek to take up that evil.

Peter in his first sermon on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2) speaks of lawlessness the same lawlessness that Paul is talking about here in 1 Timothy. Peter reminds the audience that it was lawless men who unjustly crucified Jesus (they corrupted the legitimate process of capital punishment for their own selfish desires) but that this lawlessness was done according the plans of God.

23 this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. Acts 2:23 ESV

Translation: God allowed Jesus to be murdered. God knew people would murder his son and he allowed it to happen. Today when people are gunned down God know this will happen and yet God allows it to happen. The restraining hand of the Holy Spirit is removed from society and evil lawlessness is allowed to roam free.

7 For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work. Only he who now restrains it will do so until he is out of the way. 8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of his coming. 2 Thessalonians 2:7-8 ESV

The evil of murder is just a taste, a mouth of ash, of what is to come when the restrains on evil are lifted completely. Outside of the freedom and greatness of America many have lived and continue to live in lawlessness. God has permitted this. God has allowed this evil.

God has also allowed peace and prosperity. God has allowed peace and prosperity that makes these killings all the more shocking. These killings are a wake-up call and a reminder that God’s grace and mercy are available. Everyone including the lawless will be held to account. God has not overlooked this lawlessness. God comforts those who draw near in this moment of anguish. And God sees the big picture that our life here be it long or short is temporary. God calls us to an eternal home where evil lawlessness is not found. This pain and this anarchy are temporary while we pass through. Are you making your home here and now or are you looking to an eternal home? Submit to Jesus repent of your lawlessness and draw near to the Creator. Ultimately peace, security, and home will only be found in Him.

9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. 10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed. 2 Peter 3:9-10 ESV