"So Chapman was 'obviously' not saved because he shot a man in the back and then read a book? Are you saying that no "saved" Christian has ever been angry at someone behind their back, and then sat down to do some menial task as if nothing had ever happened?" Lurker
Every Christian falls into sin. However, a true converts never "willfully" sins. He has a daily battle with things that he knows are wrong. He is torn this way and that way by sinful enticements, and what the Bible calls the "works of the flesh." But a true Christian fights the battle, and if he loses a skirmish, he is quick to get onto his knees and ask God for forgiveness.
The difference between the true and the false convert is that the Christian falls (against his will) into sin, while the hypocrite dives (willingly) into sin. If I get up on a Monday morning and say to myself, "Today I plan to sin," then I need to seriously examine myself and see if I am truly saved.
Chapman planned the murder of another human being. He harbored hatred. He prayed to the devil for help. He was filled with self-pity and guilt, and fed his mind on a book that was filled with blasphemy and sexual sin. He was a devious, hate-filled, jealous, cowardly, bitter, calculating, cold-blooded murderer who shot a man who had just shown him great kindness, in the back. And then he calmly read his favorite book while he waited for the police. He was a hypocrite of the worst kind. Mark David Chapman's "I converted to the Lord at 16," stated years after the murder are evidence of his shallow understanding of the Christian faith.
For the Piranha Bowl
Eight people were tragically killed at a California car race recently, when a speeding truck veered off course and ran into the crowd of mostly young spectators. The "California 200" was held in the Mojave Desert, 100 miles north of Los Angeles. Footage of the incident showed spectators lining close to the track, with no safety barriers. Standing that close was said to be part of the excitement of the race. Such excitement came at a terrible cost.
Graveyards are full of people who thought that excitement was worth the risk. Twisted parachutes, bad heroin, alcohol overdoses, fatal sexually transmitted diseases, and the excitement of a fast-moving car have taken many young people to an early death.
One of the main reasons young people are recruited for war, is that they think they are invincible. They are risk-takers. Yet for every young war hero, there are a thousand body-bags.
But that invincible-attitude tends to change with life's painful experiences. I'm sure the tragedy in the Mojave Desert has matured many young minds about human vulnerability, and about what really matters in life.
Of course, some won't learn the lesson. They will keep taking risks as they age, because they don't value the precious gift of life. That's why the Bible says, "Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth, before the difficult days come, and the years draw near when you say, 'I have no pleasure in them'" (Ecclesiastes 12:1 (italics added).
For the piranha bowl:
An ex-atheist once wrote, "You will have noticed that most dogs cannot understand pointing. You point to a bit of food on the floor; the dog, instead of looking at the floor, sniffs at your finger. A finger is a finger to him, and that is all. His world is all fact and no meaning. And in a period when factual realism is dominant we shall find people deliberately inducing upon themselves this doglike mind."
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How true are his words. Evolution believers dumb themselves down, believing that they are simply apes that have evolved a little more than their animal brethren. But man isn't slightly brighter than the animals. He outshines them in the area of arts, creativity, music, the preparation of his food, an appreciation of his being, the study of his history, language, speech, God, and in many other complex facets of life.
However, one area where he completely outshines the animal kingdom, is the area of law. No animal comes anywhere near man's desire to see that justice is done. The most primitive of us (foul-mouthed white men with ugly tattoos and gaping holes in their ears) believes in retribution. Snatch his beer from his clasping hand, and it's payback time. This is because those of us who are still sane are moral beings, made in the image of Him who is called "the Habitation of Justice."
You may stare at the pointing finger if you wish, and make out that the intuitive morality you have isn't God-given, but we all know what the issues are. Some of us just admit it, that's all.
Pic. Los Angeles Police care enough about justice to send 30 squad cars after two lawbreakers.
For the Piranha Bowl:
 C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory (reprint: New York: HarperOne, 2001), p. 114.
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