Monday, April 16, 2007

Tragedy at Virginia Tech


By now, many of you are aware of the massacre that took place today, on the campus of Virginia Tech University. As I write this, at least 32 people are confirmed dead, and at least 28 wounded/injured. The incident is already being called the worst shooting in United States history.

It goes with out saying that we should all be on our knees in prayer for the wounded and their families. It goes without saying that we should all be on our knees in prayer for the brave men and women of the first responder community who answered the call. But let us not miss the opportunity we have at this critical moment to serve and glorify Christ. Romans 8:28 is true, even on a day as tragic as today. "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purposes."

Even in the wake of such horrific terror and carnage, God remains sovereign. God remains holy, righteous, and just. God remains merciful and kind. God remains good.

The good that can come from this tragedy is this. Men and woman around the world may be brought to their knees in repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. But let us not forget. "How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher? How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it written, 'How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news of good things'" (Romans 10:14-15)!

Will you sit glued to the television, radio, or computer today absorbing bad news? Or will your heart break for the unsaved to the point that you will find lost people with whom to share the good news of Jesus Christ?

Should we pray? Yes! We must pray. But we must also go! We must go into all the world, onto our high school and college campuses, into our malls, and maybe into the living rooms of our own homes, and preach the gospel. We must take this tragedy and use it as the impetus for conversations with fellow students, friends, co-workers, family members, and strangers. This incident will be transfixed in the hearts and minds of people all over the world, for days and weeks to come.

We must love people enough to use this tragedy to bring them the only good news that will save their lives. We must lovingly, with great compassion and care, help people to understand what kind of eternity they will face, apart from repentance and faith in Jesus Christ.

Millions of people around the world are likely contemplating their own mortality, right now. Many people are likely gripped with fear as they contemplate facing a death similar to that faced by the innocent victims on the Virginia Tech campus. We must lovingly tell them what Jesus told His disciples. "Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell" (Matthew 10:28).

"Behold, now is 'the acceptable time,' behold, now is 'the day of salvation'" (2 Corinthians 6:2). Please, go tell someone. Please, go tell someone.

(The above photo, and others, can be found at: http://abcnews.go.com/US/popup?id=3045907&content=&page=2)

2 comments:

Leon said...

Great post!!!

Jim Baxter said...

Carl V. "Sam" Lamb and I served side-by-side as rifle-squad leaders; Fox Company, 'Chesty' Puller's 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division. He wrote a book about our experiences in the Korean conflict, 1950-1951. He included my remarks about an incident in which one of our people threatened to punch-out a fellow squad-leader-guideon who had black skin.
The page follows:

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THE LAST PARADE
by Carl V. "Sam" Lamb Page 296 (ref: 1951)

James Fletcher Baxter

"Sam" and I had a lot in common. We both resisted evil. After I
got out of the hospital, Big Jim Causey told of driving along
in his police cruiser and hitting a black man in his head
with his pistol. He thought it was funny how the guy sprawled
into the street. When he made this comment we were in a card
game. I didn't say anything, but then he said he was going to
kick the ____ out of Joe Goggins and I had heard enough.

I said, "If you're going to try that, you'll have to go through
me to get to him. I'm willing to give my life for a country
that values each individual. If that isn't true, I don't want
to fight for that country - but, it is true, so I'm not going
to let you rob me of the very good reason I may lose my life
tomorrow or next week. If you attack him, you attack me. I
may lose, but I guarantee I will make it very expensive for
you to get to him. Let me know what you decide."

He got up from our card game and said, "I'll have to think
about it."

I said, "Let me know. I'll be here."

He came back a little later and said, "You're right. I was
wrong." I thanked him for his manliness.

Joe Goggins came to me later and thanked me. He had wet eyes.

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5/10/07 JFB
Shortly after the above event, Jim Causey was called home for family
member medical problems. On his way back to the States, he passed
through a Naval medical facility. While there, he ran into my brother,
Sgt. Howard "Barney" Baxter, 5th Marines, who had just been sent
stateside for his Chosen Reservoir frost-bitten feet.

Causey told my brother what had happened and said "how much it
had changed his life." He said Joe and I had forgiven him and he
would "never go back to the old collective point of view." He was
really joyful because he was honestly able to forgive himself! He
became a more manly man - a good Marine - with honor.

I'm pleased the Rutgers women accepted Imus' apology. They, and
others, need to forgive. We all need to grow. Good examples are
always in short supply. God bless my Country and its Individuals.

vincit veritas
Jim Baxter
Sgt. USMC
WWII and Korean War
5th Grade Teacher - 30 wonderful years! '57- '87
semper fidelis

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

INDIVIDUAL VALUE - Gift of Y'shua JESUS
by James Fletcher Baxter

The Old World method of measuring human value was,
and still is, by the group. Whether tribe, clan,
city-state, color, ethnic, or gender, the Old
World, ancient and modern, measures by the plural
unit. Individuals had and have no value of them-
selves but only as they were and are part of a
collective.

When Y'shua Jesus died on the cross, the veil of
the Temple at the Holy of Holies parted from the
top down. The individual believer in the congrega-
tion had, for the first time, a face-to-face, one-
on-one relation with his Creator. The Creator,
Himself, had validated each individual for the
first time.Thus, the Individual became the corner-
stone for later human value measuring systems:
socio-political, philosophical, religious, educa-
tional, economic, etc., henceforth and forever.
Western Civilization, America, English Law, civil
Rights, the 'democratic' process, etc., all sprang
from that single event. (Greco-Roman 'democracies'
were 95% slave throughout their entire histories.)
Biblical principles are still today the foundation
under Western Civilization and the American way of
life.

Many social systems attempt to borrow ideas of
"democracy" without the basic premise in The Indi-
vidual. Such a system is only superficially and
temporarily 'democratic.' The cornerstone of the
democratic process is The Individual and the
cornerstone of the value of The Individual is
Y'shua Jesus! It is not possible to have one with-
out the other. There is only One Source - there is
no other.

It is additionally interesting to note that all
value measuring systems are based on the single
definitive unit of the system. Ex: Number, Time,
Distance, Weight, Heat, Money, Angle, Volume, etc.

Only humanism makes the abusive error of measuring
human value by the plural unit and attempts to
build social structures, relations, and institu-
tions thereon. Such man-made systems can only be
abusive and oppressive because in reality there
are only individual persons. Groups or collectives
are merely convenient verbalizations about indi-
viduals. They are not reality.

I have yet to see a 'group.' All I have ever seen
are individuals.Have you ever seen a group - or is
it a verbal convenience? Reality is only in the
individual person. And, such a validation never
derived from a human source without the initiative
of the Creator. (The French Rationalists of the
18th Century favored the fruit - but rejected the
branch, tree, and root.)

Today, wherever Y'shua Jesus is rejected, the
group or collective is still the basic way of
measuring human value - or human non-value.

We thank the Lord God for revealing His validation
of each individual person. We thank Him for creat-
ing each person uniquely, in His image, and call-
ing each one to a courageous ascension by Y'shua
Jesus, who said, "I AM the Way..."

Praise the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and
His Son of Man, Y'shua Jesus.

Reference: Exodus 25:30,40 Hebrews 9 Matthew 27:51
Mark 15:38 Luke 23:45 KJV

vincit veritas
Jim Baxter



Q: ? "How many more Columbines and VA Techs
before we 'get it?' " jfb

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Santa Maria SUN January 11 - January 18, 2002
LETTERS

Opening Santa Maria's Eyes

I am sure your readers are as pleased as my wife and I are
that Andrew Petty and the Sun have recently published
the article, "Manhood paid with women's tears." [Sun,
Dec. 28, 2001] Such cowardly, abusive, and oppressive
behavior by men in the Latino community will never buy
them manhood, but does purchase contempt from their
women and children and rejection and earned and deserv-
ed contempt and rdicule from civilized members of our
society.

The problem, however, is larger than one ethnic group
and will not be resolved until the basic cause is recogniz-
ed and dealt with appropriately. It can be observed through-
out our city, state, and nation, from the immature over-
compensating, self-doubting male, exhibiting feelings of
inadequacy, low self-esteem, and a rampant inferiority
complex, who seeks a false outlet by way of crimes against
women and innocent children and their slavish submission
to his "muscle-mind."

Gang membership and activity, trendy road-rage, and youth
violence are all evidence of male feelings of inferiority and
will not disappear from our society from resulting police
action alone -- unless and until we successfully educate to
the prime solution: individual value and individual character.

Measuring human value by a group is not the American Way.
Until our males recognize and choose to live lives of unique
and individual value, we will all be burdened by those whose
inaccurate, mediocre, and sloppy definitions of manhood
will require one or more kind of patty-cake baby sitter. Can
he take the challenge?

The young ladies of Santa Maria need not focus so much on
boyfriend's hip-hop "personality," as his self-definition,
principled intelligence, spirit, and manly virtue. Can she take
the challenge?

Jim Baxter
Santa Maria
vincit veritas

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Individual Value or Collective non-value ????