Reacting to Atrocity


Biblical Texts: Luke 7:18-28, Matt 5:1-12
Full Sermon Draft

St. Augustine, in a sermon long ago, said: Bad times, hard times, this is what people keep saying; but let us live well, and times shall be good. We are the times: Such as we are, such are the times.

We have been hearing lots of calls for action and change in the wake of another school shooting. But most of the calls that I’ve heard have been forms of taking something away from the other guy. Take the guns away. Lock up or medicate the mentally off. Everybody thinking they are safely on the other side of some bright moral line. Nobody looking at the culture that we collectively produce and allow. Looking at that would put us all on the same side of that moral line. We might have to repent i.e. change. But, such as we are, such are the times.

Until we are willing to really change, to live well as Augustine would define that, things like Newtown will continue to happen. We are simply staring in a mirror. And the deepest gospel, in the middle of this Advent season, is Come Lord Jesus. That is the only thing that finally changes the image in the mirror.