A Tragedy In Albuquerque

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309 Responses

  1. Nonnie says:

    Why, why, why????? Why would he do this?

  2. One of my daughters asked me if the boy was demon-possessed. I told her that it was not beyond the realm of possibility. My question is, and I’m not expecting an answer, how many of these shootings are satanically influenced? I suppose all of them, in a certain sense.

  3. Nonnie says:

    Jesus said that the devil came to “rob, kill and destroy.” (John 10:10)

  4. Michael says:

    I have written, begged, and pleaded with people for three long years to consider that we were on the verge of increased demonic activity in this country. I have been scorned and ridiculed for doing so.
    Something awful has changed…and hell has come to visit.
    I am not going to pretend to understand these things, but if we don’t discuss them, we will never understand.

  5. The concept of “demon possessed” is folklore and the quicker we dispel such notions the better.

    It removes the responsibility of the individual who ultimately chooses to
    get a weapon,
    get bullets,
    load each one of them,
    one at a time,
    into the clip(s),
    then pick up the gun,
    get into the line of sight of the victim(s),
    methodically raise the weapon,
    sight each victim,
    squeeze the index finger on the trigger,
    one squeeze at a time as each bullet fires,
    then choosing to continue to squeezing the trigger until the victim falls to the ground,
    then CONTINUE the act while seeking the next victim.

    That is not demonic possession, that is narcissism, the self-elevation of the individual above the concerns, rights, well being and welfare of others. Couple that with picking up a weapon because of their perception of powerless and writing wrongs and there is a sure recipe for disaster, repeated over and over again as we are seeing almost weekly here in the United States.

    It is particularly prevalent among young men who are still developing their sense of who they are in relation to other beings, which is why these damnable weapons are folly waiting to be unleashed by these undeveloped bastards and the stupid families who insist on owning guns who ease their children into them as “sport”, but ignore the fact that the man-child is holding something deadly and all it takes is childhood rage to unleash what somehow remains unthinkable in the mind of the well meaning gun owner.

  6. Nonnie says:

    G, you can put it all in “natural” terms, but the fact remains that Jesus, in the red letters, said the devil comes to ” rob, kill, and destroy.” He talked a lot more about the devil than He did heaven. There is evil in this world. I won’t try to delineate between “demon possession over demonic activity. Only God knows.
    I just know there is a source of evil and that evil is out to rob, kill, and destroy.

  7. Describing this as “demonic” is an understandable reaction to the horror, but the horror is of our own making and the quicker we discuss it with reasoned “cause & effect” the more productive our processing and finding real solutions to removing these underdeveloped man-children’s access to destructive machinery.

    We limit individuals from operating vehicles. There is a discussion about someone having a “right to drive” instead of recognizing our culture has rightly framed it as “the privilege to drive”. No one get to use machines to extend their power without reasonable safeguards for the rest of us, so that the machine isn’t in “the hands of a child”. We rightly are outraged when guys get into their vehicles and street race with callous disregard for life and property.

    Same goes here for access and ownership of firearms. If you want sport, get a bow and arrow.

    If you want to shoot something, get a Nikon and learn photography. The memories are more enduring and no one gets hurt in the process unless you’re being an abusive jackass and disrespecting the rights and privacy of others.

  8. Is it one-or-the-other?

  9. Nonnie says:

    So G, what was Jesus talking about? If the killing of children isn’t “evil” I don’t know what is. What is your take on the evil that Jesus talks about in the Bible?

  10. Em says:

    when one talks of demonic activity, it is a mistake to interpret that as a cop out, i.e., “the devil made me do it”

    there is a great deal that has changed in society in the last 100 years – of course human nature stays the same, but there is a long list of contributing factors to what we’re watching unfold now … it is, at the very least, a diabolic coming together of a perfect storm of chaos

    guns are problematic IMV – they have been in families and used responsibly for a few centuries now, but we do seem to have fewer and fewer responsible families – still there is way more causing this horror than access to a gun … the question is, will doing so ramp this up to explosives? … next we’ll ban fertilizer? not a bad idea for other reasons

  11. ( |o )====::: says:

    There is a source of selfishness and transcendent evil, and people can wring their hands and say their prayers and bind and rebuke the devil ’til they are blue in the face and think they are doing something productive and take comfort in all that.
    And then there is a source of :: stupid ::
    and that source of stupid is each of us who tolerates the continued proliferation of these weapons and their access among families and teenagers and young, troubled and unstable men.

    Look at cause and effect. Beelzebub didn’t shoot people, and he wasn’t talked out of going to the WalMart to take out as many people as possible, it was an “unhinged” teenager. What was that kid thinking? How did he view others? Were they “the enemy”, were they in any way important enough to him that he would reconsider? It took the risk of a courageous individual to bring him back to realty, and it takes the risk of each of us to influence our friends, families and neighbors to stop and reconsider the real danger of gun ownership

  12. Nonnie,
    There is a source of selfishness and transcendent evil, and people can wring their hands and say their prayers and bind and rebuke the devil ’til they are blue in the face and think they are doing something productive and take comfort in all that.
    And then there is a source of :: stupid ::
    and that source of stupid is each of us who tolerates the continued proliferation of these weapons and their access among families and teenagers and young, troubled and unstable men.

    Look at cause and effect. Beelzebub didn’t shoot people, and he wasn’t talked out of going to the WalMart to take out as many people as possible, it was an “unhinged” teenager. What was that kid thinking? How did he view others? Were they “the enemy”, were they in any way important enough to him that he would reconsider? It took the risk of a courageous individual to bring him back to realty, and it takes the risk of each of us to influence our friends, families and neighbors to stop and reconsider the real danger of gun ownership

  13. A Believer says:

    Amazing how Jesus was able to cast the folklore right out of people….

  14. Candace says:

    The friend he called prevented the killing of perhaps scores more. Whoever it was did the right thing by calling 911.

    Killing one’s entire available family denotes severe rage and mental illness issues. Looking little brothers/sisters in the face and then killing them…it’s unimaginable and terrifying to consider.

    This is one of the church’s own too. A homeschooled pastor’s son.

    What the hell happened.

  15. Nonnie says:

    G, I am not arguing for gun ownership. I don’t own any guns, could care less about guns, actually am in favour of some sort of gun control. However, in England, this weekend, a 4 year old boy was stabbed to death in his bed, sleeping next to his twin brother, who was unharmed. Evil does not need guns to rob, kill and destroy. Guns have nothing to do with what I am referring to. I am talking about the reality of evil and how it is manifested. Guns is only one way. Knives, sexual abuse, corruption, etc, etc, etc…….Evil is a reality. Jesus talked about it’s reality and I will not try to contradict Him.

  16. Em says:

    agreeing with Candace on this one and the whole nation is, i think, now asking what’s happening? most probably, the conclusion won’t be a Faith-based one … praying

  17. please... says:

    amazing to me how a guy who doesn’t believe the Bible speaks as an expert on it. G, don’t tell people to ignore what the Bible so clearly teaches as a reality. You can differ in your opinion but you are the last person to speak on Scripture with any authority at all.

  18. Yes, it is one or the other.

    Solving problems means removing that which cannot be controlled or managed, then working accordingly. That means being analytical, not religious, not thinking a “spiritual warfare” prayer of binding and rebuking and fasting is the solution. That is twaddle, a complete waste of time. It is like asking God to stop a barking dog. Pray all you want, you gotta do real things with the dog, for the dog, to the dog, maybe even training oneself to be a better owner. Maybe you pet the dog, probably you water the dog, feed the dog, care differently for the dog. Things change when a human takes reasonable and measured action within a cause and effect prod of reality.

    We choose to view things a little differently when we factor in “the bigger picture” spiritually, but all the religion doesn’t help when it isn’t applied to the specifics, which, in this case are unfolding.

    Scientific method is simple. That which is observable is demonstrable and repeatable.

    Observe, who is acting out?
    Young men who do not view others as having equal value as themselves.

    Observe, what do they do when they feel powerless?
    They get a machine to compensate for their perceived weakness and do something to make a statement.

    Observe, what is effective in lessening the effects of young, underdeveloped men who feel powerless and search out weapons as “equalizers”?
    Laws, regulations, counseling, community engagement, public service, working to solve the family issues, being honest and real about mental health issues and custodial care.

    Prayer and religion that has value changes US, to help us individually empower ourselves to view the troubled “other” with compassion, which gives us more patience with dealing with them, to be willing to dig in and help over the long term, and to help troubled families and bring all these things into the light where they can be addressed and dealt with.

  19. “Amazing how Jesus was able to cast the folklore right out of people….”

    And when you become Jesus, you can go right ahead and try it as well.

    ‘Til then, I’ll take what works, like societal integration, training, mentoring, and removing guns from households with teenagers and unstable family members, and encouraging them to take up hobbies and sports where pointing the device down range renders a picture instead of a splattered skull

  20. Hey G,
    All those questions you just asked, how do they apply to the Sandy Hook Shooter. It has been my observation that aside from initially saying he had “mental problems” or was “autistic” nothing more has been said. In fact they are strangely silent on the subject. Maybe it is because the analytical method doesn’t work against evil or demonic activity. You act like science can just give up all the answers, but it has been my observation through life that if we don’t even know ourselves and our own hearts, how can we know others? This seems to be borne out through each shooting….it always comes down to why? And no one has an adequate answer. I think Michael’s answer is more valid than anything man comes up with.

  21. Nonnie,
    Mental illness, abuse, the many things you describe may have many root causes, but to call it “demonic possession” opens a whole range of questions about methodology to solve the problem.

    Obviously we can’t say that anything in the movie “The Exorcist” worked, so now what?
    Do a search of The Daily Mail and look for recent articles on exorcism, you’ll read of horror perpetrated by religious people. And then there are stories of exorcisms because of people being gay.

    So, other than acknowledging the fact that we live in an imperfect world, going from there, what actual, tried and vetted solutions can you offer?

  22. Nonnie says:

    G, I specifically did not call it “demonic possession”….I said evil….Just as I believe in a holy and good God (as Jesus affirmed), I will also take Him at His word that there is an opposite being, He refers to as the Devil or Satan, who has come to rob, kill and destroy….

    I am not talking about Hollywood films…I’m just saying there is an evil outside of what is human….just as there is good, outside of what is human.

  23. filbertz says:

    I think we are enslaved to the “making sense of it” taskmaster. It wouldn’t be “senseless violence” if we easily could dissect it and make logical conclusions. There are multiple questions in this tragic situation that may never have satisfactory answers and defy the desire of all of us to ‘prevent the next incident.’ Further, despite our wish to control our destinies and circumstances, we daily interact with countless strangers who are cloaked in mystery. We crave an answer that allows us to exert influence or control over life…whether it be gun control, spiritual warfare, increased mental health services, bans on violent video games, parenting classes, etc. Instead, we have to conclude life is dangerous, risky, often tragic, and none of us get out alive. If the ‘enemy’ is cancer, and I do everything to avoid the risks associated with cancer, I still may get cancer–and that makes it both tragic and ironic. But it happens, perhaps frequently. I am left with two things to cliing to. First, love others without prejudice or restraint. Second, walk in gratitude for every blessing I might encounter and enjoy–they are gracious gifts from a benevolent Father. I refuse to live in fear and consternation about things over which I have no control. We are not given to a spirit of fear. And I won’t deny the spiritual world that transcends and may well influence our temporal existence. I will, instead, hold onto the faith in the One who is unseen but joined us through the incarnation and invites us into relationship and fellowship with Him. Meanwhile, we grieve, we groan, we wonder…and lean on the everlasting arms.

  24. Then, Derek, feel free to believe any conspiracy theory that comforts you because you are inferring that silence equates a cover up.

    If I ever lose my keys, I will be sure that your hotline to heaven will solve it for you, and you can pray all you want and take the credit for praying and give God all the glory, but I will be retracing my steps, checking my desk, nightstand, pockets. Perhaps you can persuade the demon of distraction to release his hold on my vision…


    Tell you what, I’m going to step away and let you all process in your own way as I process in mine. I’ll be fascinated to read the solutions you arrive at and your methodology.

    Graphic design calls me a few hours

  25. Michael says:

    All of the things G speaks of are factors…but failing to recognize that we may also be dealing with demonic oppression and influence will leave us helpless no matter the worldly solutions we invoke.

  26. G,
    That cover up thing was uncalled for. All I said was they are saying nothing of motives. Which means to me they don’t have a clue on motives or they would have released it. I see even the red letters don’t matter when you disagree with them.

  27. Nonnie says:

    G, you are loved and respected here. I trust you can agree with me that we can disagree on issues, but still respect and honour one another. Blessings to you, friend.

  28. Gotta go y’all. Got a book to write and care not a whit for posting methodology or what not. I agree Michael, but when even most christians refuse to take the idea seriously, all we can do is pray.

  29. tim says:

    G –
    Wow, that was condescending. Where is the love and tolerance you so often expect from others?

  30. Alex says:

    Nonnie asked, “Why, why, why????? Why would he do this?”

    I hope to God there was no hidden abuse in that home. Sometimes, in some cases, the outburst of violence like that is due to hidden abuse (physical and/or sexual) that has been supressed. Not saying that is what happened here, but can’t help but speculate as to the “root cause” of the outburst. Often times kids deal with the abuse through suicide, sometimes Denial, sometimes they are able to Detach and then deal with it in adulthood in a healthy manner (lots of counseling etc, like have, confronting the abuse etc). This, unfortunately, is the result of abuse in some cases. Again, not sure at all that this is the case here, but it is possible.

    Not sure about the “demon possession” thing. While I’ve first-hand experienced the results of violent rages where the abuser looked demon-possessed…I’m more inclined to agree with G that is something psychological and physiological rather than literal demons taking over the person. It is very possible Jesus healed sever mental illness like paranoid schizophrenia etc that was called “demon possession” back in the day b/c they were ancients and that’s how they explained the irrational behavior.

  31. pstrmike says:

    Having dealt with demons, having had manifestations that I actually have seen with my own eyes; having had a few experiences of being drawn into another dimension, a spiritual realm while being completely aware of and able to see my physical surroundings and the other people in the room; having had out of body experiences where I could see my body lying in bed next to my wife; having had my wife participate in an actually exorcism of a young girl who was intended to be sacrificed as a bride to Satan the following week ; I can assure you that demonic activity and the possessions of humans by demons is real. Might be inclined to think otherwise had I not experienced it myself.

    So, yes , Michael, you may very well be right on this. When I read the news flash of this situation in ABQ yesterday (I haven’t yet read te story), I immediately thought of C of ABQ and you. And this too, is no mythology.

  32. Sorry, I was and am condescending because of this sh*t happening every few weeks and
    no one is linking the glaringly obvious connection of screwed up young men who grab a gun and bullets as their sorry solution.

    I’m just very frustrated with the whole way we christians process things. It’s like we’re taking our cues from people who want to ignore reason and reality in the name of spirituality.

    Look at the tragedy here, a pastor, a chaplain who, for all reports wasn’t an abusive creep, but something was terribly wrong for this kid to do what he did.

    It isn’t lack of prayer, it isn’t lack of godliness, it isn’t lack of praying in school, it isn’t any of our “spiritual” diagnoses that Mike Huckabee or James Dobson offered, and just because Jesus cast out demons from someone on a super rare occasion doesn’t mean that is the first place we go to solve the issue or even begin asking questions. Jesus squarely put responsibility on people to own their stuff, change their ways, choose better things. When a person is incapable of doing so are we really gong to go to our default problem solving and say “it’s demonic”, or are we going to work to solve the issues with that which is reasonable, that this is mental illness, paranoia, lack of normal socialization?

    …and simultaneously removing the weapons from the household, including potential weapons like the guns in the closet and the knives in the kitchen?

    And the strength of my words and outrage don’t invalidate my general tone, Tim. I remain loving and tolerant of others and I am pointing out how functionally absurd “going spiritual” is when facing real world problems.

    Dr King rightly pointed out, “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”

    We can pray all day long but someone has to actually DO something, risk, go against public opinion, demand that people change, as did Dr. king and others within our Black churches when people refused to give ground while innocent people suffered racism. This gun madness will continue until we who name the Name of Jesus actually DO something which costs us, to trust God more than our guns and stop hiding abuse in our households and churches, and stop enabling our children to be one enraged moment away from grabbing the weapons within our homes.

    Back to design

  33. Em says:

    i think the goal is to stay balanced on this subject as we are (fortunately, IMO) unable to trot out a demon in shackles and say, “see here’s one” … i believe pstrmike’s #31, while i might not believe my own experiential sightings or feelings
    i had a relative whose own sister said that she “had a demon;” my own assessment was that she had some trauma’s and resulting personality disorders … eternity will tell on that one – however, i defensively, kept her at arm’s length eventually … was i right to do so? dunno … again, eternity will tell …

  34. Em says:

    G., are you equating prayer with denial? it can be that … but, i think, melting down our guns and knives is also denial …
    there are the obvious alternative weapons such as automobiles – frankly, i’m not even comfortable posting a list of them now … the root of this outbreak is what we need to put our minds to searching out … if we can …

  35. Em says:

    “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” ML King

    “There is nothing more frightful than ignorance in action.” Goethe

    it’s not easy, even God can’t make it so

  36. Glen says:

    Just to add something that seems to be forgotten in the discussion – the use of or withdrawal from prescription drugs. The following website is a real eye opener.

  37. London says:

    I bet every household in that rural area of town has guns. It’s not enough to say that is the problem.
    It’s also not enough to say “demons” every time something bad happens.
    BOth are too simple.

  38. Paul A. Lytton says:

    IMO, FWIW,

    When I think about all of the questions as to why theses bad things happen and what we can do about it, I have to think to the core. The core brings me first and foremost again to realizing the reality of Yin and Yang. For everything that exists has an equal but opposite existence. That does not mean that good and bad are equally balanced, it only means that there are both opposing ways as a reality. The number of people choosing one or the other distributes the balance.

    To clarify my thought deeper, Satan is evil (bad) and God is Holy (good). The next problem is “people”. It is impossible to control what others will or will not do. God of course could control every single person but did not do so and gave us a choice, a choice to either want to follow Him or want to follow Satan.

    Satan is a master deceiver. If you think you are not being deceived just remember that is how everyone that is being deceived thinks, or else they would not be deceived. Satan can deceive people who have either chosen his way to live (even to small degrees), or those in limbo. But those who really want to follow God cannot be deceived by Satan.

    This brings us to being just two types of people, whether we call them good or bad, or mean or kind, or criminal or law abiding.

    Jesus displayed the one and only way we have to battle right and wrong here on Earth. We can follow God and invite as many that will listen to join us, but we cannot change them or their ways.

    My conclusion is the best we can do is to encourage others to be Christian. I do not believe in different types of Christians. A Christian is merely a follower of Christ. Christ is a one and only and all you need to do to follow Him is to read the Bible yourself continually and ask the Holy Ghost to guide you with understanding. I have no idea when, but this world is in no doubt coming to an end. I choose to be a remnant of the Church Jesus Built and keep His commandment. I will do the best I can for others in this world and ask them to join me. Has anyone else thought of this as a way to change things the best we can? Brothers and Sisters, we cannot change everything, we can only do our best to entice the largest group of Brothers and Sisters as possible.

    God bless you all,

  39. Candace says:

    He has confessed and told police he had homicidal and sucidal thoughts, both.

    The provenance of the guns is still mysterious, because his father, as an ex-con, would be legally barred from owning weapons.

    If he was on SSRIs, his violence does have a possible explanation. Adolescents are especially known to have reactions like this.

  40. Em says:

    Candace, i appreciate your reasoned and knowledgeable input on this situation unfolding now it is helping me to understand a it little better

  41. Cant mitigate demonic influence but neither can we simplify the problem. . For one thing, it give the enemy too much credit. I think Grendal has a point and some thought should go into what he is saying.

    You may have read this. It came out as an Oped piece a few weeks back. Written by forensic Psychologist and Author Keith Albow. I think he make some points to consider

    This is an Op/ed piece by forensics Psychologist and author Dr Keith Albow, that warns of us the dangers of deception and fraud in our technological culture of social media

    A new analysis of the American Freshman Survey, which has accumulated data for the past 47 years from 9 million young adults, reveals that college students are more likely than ever to call themselves gifted and driven to succeed, even though their test scores and time spent studying are decreasing.

    Psychologist Jean Twenge, the lead author of the analysis, is also the author of a study showing that the tendency toward narcissism in students is up 30 percent in the last thirty-odd years.

    This data is not unexpected. I have been writing a great deal over the past few years about the toxic psychological impact of media and technology on children, adolescents and young adults, particularly as it regards turning them into faux celebrities—the equivalent of lead actors in their own fictionalized life stories.

    On Facebook, young people can fool themselves into thinking they have hundreds or thousands of “friends.” They can delete unflattering comments. They can block anyone who disagrees with them or pokes holes in their inflated self-esteem. They can choose to show the world only flattering, sexy or funny photographs of themselves, “speak” in pithy short posts and publicly connect to movie stars and professional athletes and musicians they “like.”

    Using Twitter, young people can pretend they are worth “following,” as though they have real-life fans, when all that is really happening is the mutual fanning of false love and false fame.

    Using computer games, our sons and daughters can pretend they are Olympians, Formula 1 drivers, rock stars or sharpshooters. And while they can turn off their Wii and Xbox machines and remember they are really in dens and playrooms on side streets and in triple deckers around America, that is after their hearts have raced and heads have swelled with false pride for “being” something they are not.

    On MTV and other networks, young people can see lives just like theirs portrayed on reality TV shows fueled by such incredible self-involvement and self-love that any of the “real-life” characters should really be in psychotherapy to have any chance at anything like a normal life.

    These are the psychological drugs of the 21st Century and they are getting our sons and daughters very sick, indeed.

    False pride can never be sustained. The bubble of narcissism is always at risk of bursting. That’s why young people are higher on drugs than ever, drunker than ever, smoking more, tattooed more, pierced more and having more and more and more sex, earlier and earlier and earlier, raising babies before they can do it well, because it makes them feel special, for a while. They’re doing anything to distract themselves from the fact that they feel empty inside and unworthy.

    Distractions, however, are temporary, and the truth is eternal. Watch for an epidemic of depression and suicidality, not to mention homicidality, as the real self-loathing and hatred of others that lies beneath all this narcissism rises to the surface.

    We had better get a plan together to combat this greatest epidemic as it takes shape. Because it will dwarf the toll of any epidemic we have ever known. And it will be the hardest to defeat. Because, by the time we see the scope and destructiveness of this enemy clearly, we will also realize, as the saying goes, that it is us.

  42. Michael says:


    That was an amazing, thoughtful post.
    Thank you.

  43. Candace says:

    Not that knowledgeable, Em, but thinking all this over carefully.

    The killings are seeming to both come closer together AND increasing in number.

    The church has it’s prescriptive measures, and those have been up-ended with this incident. Believing family, homeschooling, etc.

    Knowing that is recent and that news reports are often misleading, lots of talk is almost pure speculation. Personally, I am very curious about whether there is a medication angle to this. He had no prior contact with the police or trouble of any kind.

    I’m talking about this in an abstract way. The truth of the matter is that there are orphaned children tonight, who have to get their heads around devastating and confusing things that have changed the world as they knew it forever.

    It’s really true. Your world can change in a minute.

  44. John duncan says:

    This is so sad so many will be touched by this and many in a bad way… And this is no the first Pastors son to snap like this.. All kids who have parents in ministry are like kids with hundreds of critical parents .. My heart has always been one to guard the kids who have parents in ministry.. The constant “you! The pastors son doing such and so” they didn’t choose the ministry to live in the fish bowl like their parents did.. It’s a wonder more of them don’t go off the deep end… There is going to be so much grief and anger and everything else for so many Oh Lord have mercy on all

  45. Babylon's Dread says:

    Well the red letter faith of the G-man has been debunked. Not nickel’s worth of difference between that and pure secularism. Methinks G believes in the Jesus of his own parsings. Still he is a good egg in a brawl.

  46. Babylon's Dread says:

    Add enough qualifications to your faith and it can pass for anything or nothing but never something that actually has content.

  47. Alex says:

    Candace said, “The killings are seeming to both come closer together AND increasing in number.”

    People have been “going postal” for quite awhile now. The race killings in the 70’s was a lot of killing, helter skelter, all the serial killers, the mob killings etc etc. Same stuff, just different times (essentially) it appears.

    I think the kids/teens doing it is somewhat new, but not mass killings, that’s as old as time.

  48. Candace says:

    I agree, Alex. Mass killings are as old as time.

    I was thinking more of the late adolescent/young adult male who does a single spree act, with not much discernable provocation.

    The make up and motivation is entirely different than Manson or race killings. Serial killings stretch it out and tease police. Mob killings…it’s organized crime.Richard Speck might come closest.

    This stuff lately is different. This particular crime is almost exclusively done by white men or boys also. Strange.

  49. Alex says:

    I think Steve Hopkin’s Keith Ablow stuff has some merit and I agree Candace, it seems a bit different and more recent…starting with Columbine.

    I think the movie “the Matrix” and other Hollywood stuff glorifying killing sprees, combined with the press that Columbine-type events get…is intoxicating for some of these disturbed marginalized kids/teen.

    The knee-jerk reaction is always to want to take away the guns from the sane law abiding folks…which won’t solve anything other than disarming potential helpers who could mitigate these threats if they spill over into movie theaters, malls, schools etc.

  50. ( |o )====::: says:

    “Well the red letter faith of the G-man has been debunked. Not nickel’s worth of difference between that and pure secularism.”

    Well, let’s hear your analysis and solutions, Dread, because apart from mockery you haven’t told any if us what you would do about these tragedies, especially as a “leader” of people. I expect something more than binding and rebuking and the laying on of hands because this subject has chemical, biological and sociological issues woven through every facet, and still I find God yet again places the responsibility to act and step in on each person, regardless of their spirituality or understanding of bible passages. Tell me something that doesn’t split existence into some upper story / lower story dichotomy where a scientific observation as simple as “gravity” will pass your derision of it as “non-Red Letter” or “secular” because if all truth isn’t God’s truth then you better give up on the laws of physics, the discoveries of medicine and the Western understandings of “ethics”.

  51. Candace says:

    Yes, the forensic psychology angle. This is not solely an American phenomenon either.

    I was looking to something to start making a framework, to understand at least a piece of this.

    I also agree that Columbine seems to have laid the template for these killings.

  52. ( |o )====::: says:

    And, Dread, my brother, I’d have your back in any a brawl, but I’d be askin’, “How the hell did we get in this mess again?!”

  53. Alex says:

    G, we need to UNLEASH the HOLY SPIRIT POWWWWEEERRRR! We need to bind that devil and rebuke him! I am going on a 40 day fast and taking the fight straight to the devil himself! I will be rebuking the devil every hour on the exact hour!

    Will you join me brothers and sisters in binding the devil? Become a Bind the Devil Now partner with me. Just send in $50 to the address on your screen and help me defeat the ENEMY and release the Holy Spirit POOOOWWWWERRRR!

  54. ( |o )====::: says:

    “I think the movie “the Matrix” and other Hollywood stuff glorifying killing sprees, combined with the press that Columbine-type events get…is intoxicating for some of these disturbed marginalized kids/teen.”

    Alex, spot on.

  55. ( |o )====::: says:

    Arrrrgh, my eyes, my eyes!
    Purple hair!
    My eyeeeees…

  56. Alex says:

    G, I’m with you on this one.

    Fundies need to remove the “taboo” from modern medicine and psychology and get these kids real help when they need it.

    Or, at least bind the devil and cast out the demons….and let your kid see a psychiatrist and get some meds and real help at the same time. I’m guessing you’ll see some sort of real miracle if you do that.

  57. Em says:

    i was glad to read Steve H’s #41 … the frequency and the magnitude of the problem are growing – we’d better ask serious questions – we must employ psychiatry, but it is a fallible science, as dangerous in the wrong hands as are the guns … IMO …

    this has been a problem in my part of the world for quite a while now …
    my memory is a bit hazy on this because it seemed like an isolated incident at the time … however, in a little town called Moses Lake in the middle of Washington State in the mid 90s a young H.S. (or middle school?) student marched into his school with a gun and killed one or more … then there was an incident where 2 youngsters came upon a “transient” on the outskirts of a town down the road on the Columbia R. and killed him (probably a gun, but may have used rocks, i don’t know if i ever read, it didn’t get a lot of press coverage) … then a few miles north about 6 years ago, 2 teens killed a mentally slow younger boy in a park with a knife, as i recall, … may have bludgeoned the child or hung him, i can’t remember … in my childhood, we were a bloodthirsty lot eager to kill nazis and japs and then the war ended before we got a chance … kill the bad guys! maybe, children today think that they really can do that? … kill all the ones you think are “bad” … be a terrorist?

  58. Michael says:

    Nobody in this conversation…including and especially myself…have advocated anything other than a complete assessment of troubled person or situation.
    The only ones who desire incomplete solutions are the ones who rule out any spiritual issues being addressed.
    I don’t appreciate the caricatures or the mockery.

  59. ( |o )====::: says:


    !!!!! O_o !!!!!

  60. Alex says:

    This is from a Christianity Today article just now, very interesting…my gut tells me there was more going on in that situation from my personal experiences in church and “former” criminals as clergy etc. Very skeptical about this situation…

    According to the Facebook posting of family friend Steve Stucker (first spotted by BuzzFeed):

    “I’m Torn on what to say about the shooting deaths of Greg Griego, his loving wife Sara, and 3 of their beautiful young children. One of their sons is the suspect, and reportedly has confessed. There are other details I just don’t feel comfortable in sharing, out of respect for the family, and the legal process. I know a lot of you are wondering what happened & why. We may never know fully or completely. He was a friend, & This I DO know: Greg was an ex con and former Gangbanger who Completely turned his life around through his Faith in Jesus. Greg, with the full support & blessing of his wife and family, spent the rest of his life visiting Jails & Prisons, sharing his story and changing Lives through the Love of Christ. He became a Chaplain & Pastor, and worked tirelessly at MDC in what used to be called “The God Pod”. He encouraged and mentored so many of us in the Jail Ministries over the years. I can’t pretend to speak for him…but I KNOW he would have asked us to Forgive the one who did this awful thing, because he never thought it was too late to change a person’s heart & mind. Greg knew he himself was imperfect, and I know he struggled with his faults (as we all do) over the years. I also know he never believed there was Any man beyond the redemption of Jesus. Please honor his memory & life’s work, by showing Love, Compassion & Forgiveness to those who have done wrong & even horrible things. Let us all Fast & Pray, and examine our hearts towards those who commit crimes, have mental illness, and feel hopelessly alone. May our Great & Mighty God protect us all, and see us through this darkness.”

  61. Alex says:

    Michael said, “The only ones who desire incomplete solutions are the ones who rule out any spiritual issues being addressed.”

    What if “the spiritual” is actually tautological for neuroscientific reality that we just don’t fully understand yet?

  62. Michael says:

    The Bible says it isn’t and I’ll go with the Bible.

  63. Scott says:

    Good grief, Alex. Give it a rest for once.

  64. Alex says:

    “The Bible says it isn’t and I’ll go with the Bible.”

    Actually, the bible may express it, we just don’t understand the metaphor until we stop “seeing through a glass darkly”

  65. Michael says:

    Whatever…sounds like a fascinating topic for your blog.

  66. Alex says:

    Michael, whether you realize it or not, if you hold a view that Jesus is both flesh and spirit…unlike Chuck Smith who seems to claim spirit only and the flesh “is not the real me”…then you actually embrace a position (as do I) that somehow they are contained within the natural physical law of the multi-verse…we just don’t have the ability to understand it yet and see it as it really is…so we’re left with metaphor like “demon possession” for paranoid schizophrenia etc.

  67. Michael says:


    I don’t need any assistance from you to clarify what I believe.
    I believe that the spiritual world impacts the physical, for good and for evil.
    Mental illness is an organic dysfunction, which can be worsened by spiritual oppression, but is not the same thing.
    I’m not interested in Smith’s position either.

  68. Alex says:

    “Impacts” or is co-existent and united? Jesus is both flesh and spirit, no? He is resurrected in the literal physical man flesh, no?

  69. Alex says:

    Michael, open your eyes. When you die and resurrect and “stand” before God…are you standing on the legs you have now that are glorified literal flesh and incorruptible? Or are you a spirit being?

  70. Alex says:

    If the “Jesus is resurrected in His man flesh” is a correct position…then that includes His man brain and the neuroscientific realities that go with that biology…just perfect and incorruptible in the glorified state…or you are forced to take a Gnostic position that Jesus is some sort of “spirit being”…ponder that in light of the reality of psychology and paranoid schizophrenia being exactly what is described as “demon possession” in the ancient texts….

  71. Michael says:

    One of my favorite stories is about how Jesus cast the mental illness out of a person into some pigs and they ran off a cliff and drowned.

  72. Michael says:

    “And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons.”
    (Matthew 10:6–8 ESV)

    Clear differentiation between organic illness and demonic oppression.

  73. Michael says:

    “And he healed many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons. And he would not permit the demons to speak, because they knew him.”
    (Mark 1:34 ESV)

  74. Michael says:

    “Now when the sun was setting, all those who had any who were sick with various diseases brought them to him, and he laid his hands on every one of them and healed them. And demons also came out of many, crying, “You are the Son of God!” But he rebuked them and would not allow them to speak, because they knew that he was the Christ.”
    (Luke 4:40–41 ESV)

  75. Michael says:

    There’s a bunch more where those came from…

  76. Alex says:

    “One of my favorite stories is about how Jesus cast the mental illness out of a person into some pigs and they ran off a cliff and drowned.”

    Yet others He simply healed and there is no account of “demons” going into something else, the folks were just healed. And, the other healings, if literal and true, had to be biological reality and not spiritual, no?

    It is very possible that the pig story was a literal reality and that we don’t understand that “demons” is synonymous with a neuroscientific reality and that for some reason Jesus took that biological reality out of the man and miracled it into the pigs, dunno.

    I do know that a position that holds that Jesus is still man flesh, only resurrected…and that we will be resurrected man flesh with brains, brain chemistry, synapses, etc etc only in a perfect incorruptible state….lends credence to a scientific explanation for what we observe today as psychological reality and neuroscientific reality in terms of brain chemistry and the physiological effects, like Paranoid Schizophrenia resulting in “hearing voices” and causing extremely irrational behavior mirroring what is described as “demon possession” in the bible.

  77. Scott says:

    Michael, those passages are so obvious it’s a wonder to me that anyone would even have to be reminded.

  78. Alex says:

    Hmmm, demons as disembodied spirits. Spirit beings with no body that can take over a human’s body. Dunno, but I guess it’s possible. Maybe the physical reality of the chemical imbalance of a paranoid schizophrenia makes that easier somehow, opens a door somehow. Dunno.

    I’m not saying there’s no spirit, I just don’t sign off to a “spirit only” position or we have to toss out the literal physical man flesh resurrection of Jesus and that He is in the flesh today.

  79. Michael says:


    Scripture clearly teaches that Jesus knew the difference between organic illness and spiritual oppression…He healed both.

    I need no convoluted theories to believe the clear teachings of Scripture.

  80. Alex says:

    The reality (that we can verify through observational science) is that many who would have been called “demon possessed” in bible times…are healed with meds all the time and have their ‘demons’ cast out through modern medicine.

  81. Alex says:

    ” the clear teachings of Scripture.”

    LOL, I don’t see them as “clear” at all, neither does history and the divergence of opinions today…but it is hard to dismiss the passages you cite…though it very well could have been for that time only…akin to literal supernatural miracles that we don’t seem to see today…not one medically documented real supernatural miracle that has withstood scrutiny from science. So maybe the demons used to possess folks back then and now it’s purely mental illness…just as we don’t seem to see any real verifiable Jesus-like miracles today.

  82. Alex says:

    Some Cessationists probably agree I’m guessing?

  83. Michael says:

    Orthodox, historical Christianity acknowledges the existence of Satan and fallen angels,as well as acknowledging that both are still active in the present age.

    Cessationism is a position about whether or not the sign gifts are active, not the devil.

  84. Alex says:

    “Since the canon of the Scripture has been completed, and the Christian Church fully founded and established, these extraordinary gifts have ceased”. —Jonathan Edwards

    Very likely that there are no more demons to be cast out and no more Demon Caster Outers….now we have mental illness and doctors and meds to “heal” them.

  85. Alex says:

    Michael, I think I agree…devil and demons still real somewhere…but probably not in the possession biz today as it seems the miracle “gifts” aren’t around today either…and ironically many of your Reformed brethren seem to hold a Strong Cessationist position.

  86. Alex says:

    …or the Charismatics are right after all…and we best be going Benny Hinn on some demon arse and right quick!

  87. Michael says:

    or perhaps there is a biblically informed position that rejects both extremes…

  88. Alex,
    “and ironically many of your Reformed brethren seem to hold a Strong Cessationist position.”

    I lost the link to your church – give me the link – I remember listening to your pastor take a pretty strong cessationist position when he was in Romans (I think it was Romans)

  89. n o m a n s says:

    Just got done reading the gospel of Mark again for the fourth time. It keeps unfolding and unfolding. The thing that has gripped me everytime is how often Jesus encountered the demonized… and how we have marginalized it. It was a major part of His ministry, casting out demons. We don’t even like talking about it. On a personal note… I know what I know. And those who have seen the things I have seen know what I’m talking about.

  90. n o m a n s says:

    Sometimes I think in America the lines have become so blurred that the problem is not in the method by which the Christian is handling the demonized, but in simple recognition. We are a nation full of strange middle ground camouflage.

  91. Scott says:

    And Alex keeps posting those stupid straw man videos that have been floating around the Internet for years. What are you trying to prove that most of us around here don’t already know, Alex? That stuff reminds me of what teeneagers would do to try and make a point on an argument they have clearly lost.

  92. Alex says:

    MLD, yes, I think my pastor is pretty much a Strong Cessationist…I know Johnny Mac is (who was a big influence as well) and I know the more liberal influences within Anglicanism are, too (Rowan Williams etc). However, it is not some of the influences that lead me to my current conclusion on the issue…it is the lack of evidence today, whereas in bible times even those who opposed Jesus and the disciples had to assent to their miraculous powers it was so self-evident.

  93. London says:

    So Michael, are you saying there’s no such thing as human evil, and all evil is demon inspired? Not taunting..just asking

  94. Alex says:

    Scott, it’s called humor, you may want to try it out sometime, it’s kind of fun.

  95. Alex says:

    It’s not an argument, it’s a discussion and search for the truth.

  96. incognito says:

    First I am posting under my not so veiled pseudonym for personal reasons. Another I am vague about some of the issues I have discussed I E don’t name names of churches or individuals because my recollections are viewed through a great deal of hurt and frustration so I am convinced they are not totally accurate, they are in the ball park. Maybe I am even in the infield but not accurate enough to be accurate enough to name people or places. Nevertheless, I do think my point of view offers a perspective that might be helpful.

    First, I am sure there is a mental health component / issue to this latest tragedy, of course that does not help the pain and anguish those involved are going through. I think the “debate” is somewhat premature but the issues raised all have merit. However, these two books are somewhat dated “The Lonely Crowd” and “Habits of the Heart” Tocqueville’s “Democracy in America” offers a framework for what we as a nation are going through. The struggle we fight between community and rugged individualism. A battle between the enlightenment and Augustinian’s view of humanity. Of course, that is a very simplistic dichotomy, if it is even a dichotomy. If one reads between the lines in much of the Public / “Pop” literature of our nation much of it is “extreme” or “crisis” oriented. We clamor for “emergencies”, but our lives in the real world are not like that on a day-to-day basis. Multiply that by a billion and you get what we have coming at us on a daily basis. In the past, we may receive some traumatic news in a week or months time, further in the past we received bad news in months if not years. Now it floods in on the TV, the internet, the radio with analysis where changes are measured in days if not hours instead of decades and years.
    In that, back drop we have a generation of children raised in this culture of instant perfection, constant communication apart from true “local” community. “Reality” shows are scripted like a pro wrestling match and some 13-18 year old is suppose to filter all that through an ever changing lenses of “reality”. Then there is the constant violence and proof of “manhood”, mixed in with that is hormones, peer pressure, and the rhetoric. Twist into that the “Church” battle for purity, relevance, and a seat at the table. Mixed up in that is the battle of mental illness, which is usually viewed as sin, weakness, wanting attention, needing love etc, all “sins” the American Jesus loathes with a passion. Mixed in are high “velocity” weapons, which put the power of “god” in the hands of some lost confused soul. In a “video game” reality, it is no wonder such things happen. Mixed in with that is passing a bazillion tests to just get into a good high school so you can get into a good college so that you can get a good job and so on.
    In this case is a young man who was home schooled, who may have had some mental health issues, access to weapons acted on what few of us may understand. I have taken care of people with profound mental illness, extremely violent people who had the potential to seriously hurt you. I am paying for that now in spades. Metal chairs across the head, tossed down stairs, bit more times than I could count, feces across the face, spit on, hair pulled, slapped, kicked, and so on. In reading the histories of these people, the abuse these people suffered was almost unbearable for a weak soul like me. There where the shrieks and contorted bodies, the changed voices, the violent lashing out and other such B rated “devil flicks”. I prayed, I cast the demons out, I tried so hard, to no avail. But the methodical application of medication and behavior mod techniques were not perfect but they really helped. Of course all these methods were of Satan and should be repudiated.

    go be continued

  97. incognito says:

    We are so alone it is almost palatable; we are told to be part of community but expected to be independent. We need to “man up” and get a job, raise a family, raise perfect children and so on. Do not follow that path to your shame. Now on to demonic possession, I actually believe in demonic possession and see it daily. During the last economic crisis, I saw many demon-possessed people, who drove nice cars, had great houses, and made bank on the backs of literally millions if not billions of people without losing a second of sleep. I actually envy them and even prayed I had the guts to be that ruthless, but I lacked the moral fiber to be that immoral. Satan ran amuck in the last few years, people sold their souls for trinkets, and I was hoping to be first in line to trade my soul for some crumbs and I freely admit that. Therefore, what kept me from selling my soul, my students, they were my anchor to grace and hope. This I think is the healing salve for the nations and people. It seemed Jesus had something to say about that but I am not just a red letter “Christian”. Jesus asked Judas a question; do you betray the son of man with a kiss? I would have to say yes, I betrayed Him with my kiss. I tried to heal myself, I tried so many times instead of resting.
    I am not a Christian in the historic sense, but found a new “spiritual” family. The first time I actually walked through the doors of a faith group I have hung out around for a few years. I don’t buy most of what they say, and they could care less, they actually encourage you to continue in your faith tradition. They are not challenged by different ideas; they are not deterred by differences. They actually just try to do some good for the people around them. I find myself channeling my inner Alex and MLD at the same time and framing that with my inner Michael. But what I arrived at is the inner Him. I can’t reject Christ, even when I try I can’t. Now I am in a community that does not want me to yet allowing me the framework to deal with the many issues that go with that. All my words are hollow, what I really wish is that five people were still alive and a 15 year old child could hug his father and the two could cry together one time and we never would have heard of them because of what happened. I wish that most of all.

  98. incognito says:

    both my comments are in moderation I guess because of length. any mod if you feel they have some worth please post them, thanks.

  99. incognito says:

    I have several comments in moderation

  100. n o m a n s says:

    Got it

  101. London says:

    Three children under the age of ten are dead along with their two parents. Their fifteen year older brother is in jail for murder. Many lives ruined. Many people hurting
    Probably not the best time for fun and humor.

  102. London says:


  103. G-man

    First of all I have no need to assess the matter at all. None of us knows anything except that a horrible tragedy has happened. Lives are taken others are demolished. Some people assessed the matter and you didn’t stop at debunking their assessment you debunked the red letter man’s revelation.

    All I am saying is that your flag is in tatters and little is left of its’ emblem only threads that leave us guessing who it represents. Because there is not enough left to assess faith in the revealed red letterman. I am genuinely troubled by this.

    I often respect your critiques of a matter, even this matter until it goes to the fact of basically reducing the red letter guy to such a bare minimum that he is indiscernible from some form of basic human affection. You seem to not only deny the Bible but also the worldview of the authors of the Bible even the barest of Hebrew revelation. I do not ask for a creed to refute my assertion I just say you appear to be perhaps at most a unitarian because nothing is left of the Jesus of the Bible.

  104. You ask for my assessment as a leader of people… I answer first that I have only the barest of facts. A son has gone postal on his kin. As a pastor I would. 1. Tend to the living including the boy where possible. 2. Plan for the closure for the families. 3. Make no declarations of God’s will, the devil’s work or psychological analysis since I am not privy to the counsel of any of those chambers concerning the matter.

    I would deal with what is. I would join the mourners, I would say that this is an act that bears no resemblance to the order of things in heaven but bears complete resemblance to a world gone dark with sin. I would declare the redeemer and his redemption. I would pray for providential mericies to emerge that shed light in the darkness and give hope to the hopeless. I would silence those who try to use nonsense statements…similarly to what your motivation was but I would do it without destroying a Biblical worldview of heaven hell, angels demons, God and devils. There is no need to destroy those gifted revelations.

    Then I would let those who bear legal responsibility do their job. I would do mine. We all have a role to play. I would stay within my role of shepherding the flock of God and speaking to the powers for justice and mercy.

    I would certainly not assess the matter by debunking 6 thousand years of Biblical revelation. But I would have NO trouble asking those who speak tritely of holy things to use more care. Job’s friends will find no ally here.

  105. incognito says:

    what we should remember

    “Authorities identified the victims as Greg Griego, 51, his wife Sarah Griego, 40, and three of their children: a 9-year-old boy, Zephania Griego, and daughters Jael Griego, 5, and Angelina Griego, 2.”

    This is what we should remember.

  106. Nonnie says:

    Dread, you speak with such wisdom and a pastor’s heart. Thank you.

  107. Dread,
    You completely miss my assertion that God has placed the spiritual battle in the hands of common men to make common sense decisions and to understand that it is most extraordinary that a solution would be to pray to cast out demons or think that root causes are because of some demonic activity. You deride my observations that the answers are societal, and psychological, that the problems arise because a mentally disturbed young man makes the misguided choice to deal with his inner turmoil by getting his hands on a gun.

    And this somehow this is “secular”, that it disqualifies my “Red-Letter” focus on Jesus, His life, His words, His story, His resurrection which proves that He is God?

    It seems you and others are compelled to post bible verses about Jesus and demons, but to what end? Yes, Jesus cast out demons, bid them to be silent, etc, but what does any of that have to do with observing and finding patterns and making reasonable predictions of outcomes, which is called “the scientific method”? Jesus was a carpenter, probably made the boats they fished from, yet He on one occasion, a rare one, chose to forgo the boat and walk on water. We still go to boats as our first solution for water transportation, pray as muchas we might. Jesus multiplied fishes and loaves, but we can pray all we want, the solution remains to solve our hunger by more efficient means like going to the market and buying the food. And then there’s the (sadly) rare instance of water into wine.

    My point all along is that it’s NOT the NORM to solve things like these mass killings by mentally ill young men by beginning the dialog with a declaration that the core answer begins with spiritual assumptions. The patters are observable, that these children/teens/men are mentally ill and to characterize any of it as demonic is a gross mischaracterization. One cannot pray away what must be managed by behavioral therapy and medication. But even more important, as we need to support friends and families which have mental illness challenges, we are completely disconnected from reality if we do nothing about the proliferation of these killing systems (guns & multi round clips) which have multiplied into average homes all around us.

    I have spent my life involved in ministry, seen addicts choose to change their way by the miracle of realization that God has better for them. I have seen men and women come to realizations that God has better for them and their families, so they choose family therapy and change the patterns of abuse and crazy making. And I have been a part of charismatic groups who insist that the answers are about spiritual warfare, binding and rebuking demons, and all sorts of other spiritual disciplines, so I am not a casual observer of our faith and how somethings are biblical and others are practical, they are all completely under the covering and authority of Jesus.

    I’m only saying that our relationship with God is the workshop and every project does not include a hammer

  108. incognito, you and our late night sage brian are similar blessings

  109. Michael says:

    Now that this is going nowhere fast…
    No, London…I’ve never said or even intimated on this forum or any other that there is no such thing as human evil.
    That would be as obscenely stupid in my book as denying the fact of supernatural evil.


    I’ve got some news for you…some of us are living in situations where the “scientific method” and all the therapy and medication available haven’t made a dent in terrible situations on their own.
    It’s only been through recognizing and doing battle in another realm ALONG with all the favorite tools of secular medicine that progress has been made.

    Nowhere, let me repeat…NOWHERE… have I said that all the other tools that God has given us are to be discarded in favor of prayer alone.

    I am saying as loudly as I can that ignoring spiritual realities in these situations can be as deadly as doing nothing at all.

    Some folks have heard and understand and I’ll take comfort in that.

  110. Nonnie says:

    G, I don’t think any of us have been implying that all pain, destruction and sorrow in this world is “demonic.” We are just stating that evil is real and as Christians, we should not forget that. When someone starts denying a spiritual realm of evil, then we call upon Jesus’s words in the scriptures. I have seen mental illness and I have seen demonic oppression and I know both are real. I also know that our Lord has power over them all.

  111. London says:

    Gee Michael,
    Sorry I asked.

  112. you folks were busy over here on this thread and all of you are making sense to me (some flack excepted and skipped) … a good hashing out and refining IMHO – thank God for every post and every stand, the ground is more common than it appears

  113. Alex says:

    I think G brings some good balance to over-spiritualizing stuff to the point of Gnosticism.

    I also think there is real evil in the world and angels, demons and a literal devil etc.

    I also think Jesus Christ is resurrected man flesh, now incorruptible and glorified flesh…or you can pretty much toss out the whole of Scripture, as that seems to be a Core Foundational Truth (though Chuck Smith seems to not think so…”the real me is spirit, my flesh is not the real me” stuff as if the real us is some spirit being…well. that blows the literal resurrection of the flesh out of the water).

    Again, if the literal resurrection of man flesh of which Jesus is assumed to have pulled off…and it is assumed Jesus is resurrected today in His glorified man flesh with a glorified brain, glorified synapses, glorified brain chemistry etc etc as a resurrected man who had those same things when He walked this earth as a pre-glorified man…then there is much to consider about literal brain chemistry and how it affects “Consciousness” and our “being”.

    I studied anthropology in college. I studied Shamanism. Know how the Shamans got in touch with the “Spirit World” etc? They took drugs…they altered their brain chemistry…they talked with “spirits”…through taking drugs and changing their brain chemistry. Think about that one.

    “Sorcery” in the bible is “pharmakeia”…drugs to enter the spirit world….

    Drugs that affect brain chemistry.

    Brain Chemistry that causes hallucinations, hearing voices, super strength (think PCP, etc).

    I think that literal natural physical law “is” spiritual in the context of our consciousness and how our physical brains work and respond, etc. I think what happens is, doors to the spirit world (possibly other dimensions, etc currently postulated by Theoretical Physicists, see M Theory etc) are opened through altering brain chemistry.

    Brain Chemistry can be changed through drugs, but it is also changed through trauma, abuse (physical and sexual), stress, diet, habits etc etc.

    Jesus has brain chemistry, if He is literally a resurrected man. The two issues of “spirit” and “biology” are not mutually exclusive if one takes a non-Gnostic approach to Jesus and the bible.

  114. Alex says:

    in other words, there must be a biological/natural physical law reality to what we sometimes seem to ascribe “only spiritual” to.

    “Spirit” is likely a natural physical phenomenon that we are simply unable to detect in this Dimension, though we see it’s fingerprints.

  115. Alex says:

    Theoretical Physicists assert that in other “parallel Universes” the natural physical laws are likely to work differently…that what is an absolute like gravity here in this dimension we are currently experiencing…may not work the same in another dimension…and that anything is possible. This may sound a bit bizarre…but not in the context of the Christian assent to a “spiritual dimension” and the Christian belief that Jesus somehow was able to violate the natural physical laws of our current existence with real miracles.

    My assumption is there is much we don’t understand about the Multi-Verse and it’s complexity and multi-dimensional layers…and that we get a small glimpse through science and then we get a small glimpse through Scripture (but we often misunderstand what we read in scripture and over mysticize it, when it likely has a physical reality that we just don’t understand in this dimension).

    We are “increasing in knowledge” and getting more and more glimpses into the Absolutes of how things really are…DNA, Neuroscience, Quantum Physics, molecular biology etc etc on one end…yet we seem to hold observational science as taboo and somehow and enemy of Christianity on the other. I see the two as compatible, until Science becomes a philosophy/religion rather than science.

  116. Alex says:

    “Consciousness” is quantifiable only because we each experience it…yet we cannot quantify it (yet) through observational science…as “brain dead” folks have described post-death realities/consciousness when they somehow revived and their bodies and brains began to function again.

  117. Alex says:

    “And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light. And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elijah talking with him. Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus, Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah. While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him. And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid. And Jesus came and touched them, and said, Arise, and be not afraid. And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Jesus only. And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, saying, Tell the vision to no man, until the Son of man be risen again from the dead.” (Matthew 17:1–9, KJV)

    Seems the Disciples got a bit of a foreshadowing as Jesus transfigured in front of them into His glorified flesh state, with Elijah and Moses appearing in this dimension in their now glorified “transfigured” state as well. If this account is literal and true, there are natural physical realities that exist that we are simply not aware of yet…as they were not “spirit beings” without resurrected flesh bodies. They speak, have body parts, look like men, etc.

    The Greek word is “metamorphoo” or “to transform”…we have an interesting metaphor in biology with the caterpillar/butterfly.

    Also interesting in light of Paul’s teaching regarding being “transformed” in the renewing of your mind, etc.

    Word for “mind” is “nous” or “Reason”…”intellect”….”understanding”…

    Interesting parallels…

  118. Em says:

    reading and agreeing with most of Alex’s 113 … we know our resurrected Lord, by His own description, had or could avail Himself of “flesh and bone” … interesting omission: blood
    IMO we don’t really know what a glorified body such as He displayed is composed of … He walked thru a wall? to declare we will be “spirits” isn’t really saying much as we don’t even know what spirits are – really …
    our heart, “guts” and more than likely our nervous system, too, are needed now to function as a man (generic) between birth and death – it might scare us to death ( 🙄 ), if we really knew what we’re gonna be composed of as eternal beings … so i can’t really amen any speculations or declarations as to just what we will be
    the organic brain is a charged processor, nothing more, and can sustain damages such as described in 113 – that much i can ‘amen’

    just wasting time here – idle speculation

  119. ( |o )====::: says:

     “We need to make access to mental health care easier than access to a gun.”


  120. erunner says:

    g, As you know funds are being slashed for mental health care. One of the results is many mentally ill people get lost in our prison system or rotate in and out because of their illness. Money spent via the criminal justice system would be better spent with positive results by diverting those dollars to services created to help the mentally ill.

    Although stigma still exists throughout the nation towards the mentally ill progress is being made.

    Returning troops suffer from PTSD in huge numbers The suicide rate among these men and women is out of control. Thankfully there are ministries and services directed towards our returning vets. The average person doesn’t rail against the suffering vet. They see them as victims of war(s) who are required to do and see things no human being should be subjected to. If we could learn to extend the grace many show towards our vets towards other mental illness victims much would change. Hopefully that day comes sooner than later. This is one organization that is trying to make a difference. http://www.giveanhour.org/

    There are so many beliefs people hold concerning mental illness that often conversation isn’t possible. The bottom line is there are people suffering and we need to help them. Too many are losing hope. We need to offer them some… especially the church.

  121. london says:

    I wonder if there’s some PTSD type thing happening in the brains of those youngsters playing those horrible freaking video games that simulate war.
    Video games can cause seizures and even death because of the flashing lights. You can not convince me they don’t have some effect on a young brain.

  122. n o m a n s says:

    Interesting observation, L

  123. Alex says:

    I agree London and I think the answer is “yes”…brain chemistry and brain function is altered by the habitual use of violent video games (and watching violence in movies etc).

    Science seems to prove such: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111130095251.htm

    There seems to be a correlation between what London suggests and the brain…and it isn’t good.

  124. Em says:

    totally in agreement with #121 … repetition builds reflex and it all begins in the head – believe it or not, your brain can process input and send messages to your various body parts before you can even enter into the “conversation”

  125. Alex says:

    Studies are proving the correlation between playing violent video games and an increase in aggression and changes in brain function/chemistry:


  126. erunner says:

    London, I agree with what you shared. The scary thing is the fact these games and other things are so easily available to young people. I’m sure some of these kids play with their parents.

  127. Em says:

    so many thoughts come to mind, but i’m interested in this ‘conversation’ among you all who are out there interacting with children these days … my impression is that virtual is reality for the majority of people today?

  128. Alex says:

    Conversely, positive activities change brain chemistry in a good way (helping reduce depression, bad mood, aggression etc), like good diet and exercise and relaxation techniques including the dreaded taboo of yoga:


  129. I think the kid was just a spoiled kid – pissed at his mom and went further than he expected.

    Brain chemistry – sound too much like Dan White’s Twinkie Defense when he killed George Mascone and Harvey Milk.

  130. n o m a n s says:

    I see massive amounts of distance between a spoiled kid, pissed at his mom, and a mass murderer.

  131. London says:


  132. London says:

    My personal opinion is its just as mood altering and addiction inducing as some drugs, gambling, drinking, p@rn, or food. There should be warning labels on the boxes and parents told about the long term potential for kids tone one addicted.
    I think schools and churches should stop offering them as “baby sitters” and there should be recovery groups popping up to treat the addicts.
    We ignore it because they call them “games” but they can become full blown addictions that cause job loss, apathy about school and violent tendencies.
    Kids spend big money on the systems and the games. The game makers are smart. They get people hooked on the game, then start charging REAL money for “upgraded” weapons.
    Kids in the heat of the battle pay a few dollars to move up a few levels where it starts all over again.
    I think they are terrible

  133. London says:

    My 132 was to Em

  134. n o m a n s says:

    I wanna know who your “whatever” was to 🙂

  135. London says:


  136. #129 i, too, suspect the kid was spoiled … but i doubt that he was spoiled from indulgent parenting 😐
    so, the question is, ‘what spoiled?’ something is creating an attitude of impotence and a desperate need for power to … do what? fix? revenge? destroy? bring an end of the adventure? is there some drive that says the game has to end, blindly ignoring the fact that it won’t reboot and start again? …

    then there was the guy that shot the congresswoman and that one seems like whole ‘nother syndrome … dunno …

    we’d like to think that Scriptural principles will **reform** the world – they aren’t going to – however, the Church is involved in this – these times and this place – and ought to examine and contribute what we can toward solutions non-the-less … pray for wisdom – prayer is good IMNSHO

  137. thank you London, your #132 makes a lot of sense to me

  138. Nomans
    “I see massive amounts of distance between a spoiled kid, pissed at his mom, and a mass murderer.”

    I see massive amounts of distance between a “gamer” and a mass murderer.

    So far it’s been his parents fault, the devils fault, the school’s fault, the church’s fault, the game makers fault, the gun lobby;s fault – not a one, except perhaps G has said it is the kid’s fault.

    I think he was pissed at his mom, killed her and then flipped out – and that’s is what I meant when I said he went further than he had expected.

    We see it all the time, some guy is mad at his ex wife, goes over to her house to confront her – kills her and ends up by killing everyone in the house – but that wasn’t the intent, other than perhaps killing the ex wife.

  139. Alex says:

    Agreeing a lot with London’s take.

    MLD, do you deny the science of brain chemistry? Is your world still flat?

  140. “The motive as articulated was purely that he was frustrated with his mother,” Houston said, explaining that the suspect refused to elaborate. “He was just frustrated with how things were.”


  141. Alex says:

    Read the science daily articles and verifiable studies MLD. I am not surprised the kid was into violent video games and is unemotional about the killings…fits with the data.

  142. Alex, you are a riot. The ultimate “Guns don’t kill people, people kill people” Now sides with “violent games kill people”

    LOL – rolling on the floor – you are Eddie Murphy funny.

  143. Alex says:

    No, the kid killed his folks and his siblings…the violent video game addiction contributed to the change in his brain chemistry as confirmed by recent scientific studies that prove the brain changes through MRI’s and psyche evaluations etc…and the change in brain chemistry/brain function results in a desensitizing to violence and an increase in violent aggression…as exampled by the kid’s excitement about talking about the video games with the investigators…and the fact he went postal and killed his family w/o really batting an eye.

    More reason to allow the sane among us to legally own firearms. My premise for firearm ownership has always been a distrust of mankind and the acknowledgment of dysfunction, evil, whatever you want to call it that results in crazy folks killing other folks…I (and others) just want a fighting chance when the crazies inevitably snap…or when criminals inevitably attempt to victimize, and as a check against Tyranny, as history proves govts/systems tend to move in that direction over time.

  144. Alex says:

    Guns are agnostic. They are inanimate objects.

    Violent Video Games are mood altering, brain altering media…which is scientifically proven in numerous studies.

    Apples and oranges MLD.

  145. Cha Ching – protect the business.

    The video guys are making up the same stories to protect their business.

  146. Alex says:

    I don’t need to ‘protect the business’…0bama’s doing such a good job selling guns, I might get to retire early 😆

  147. “Violent Video Games are mood altering”

    LOL – ever been out with a bunch of 30 somethings shooting everything in sight in the desert all day – talk about mood altering.

  148. Fear mongering is the mood changer – now they are all loaded up. Oh wait, the kid could have killed his family by beating them to death with the XBOX.

  149. Alex says:

    MLD said, “ever been out with a bunch of 30 somethings shooting everything in sight in the desert all day”

    Yep, many times. It’s a lot of fun. Good practice, too.

  150. I will just drop it here – the kid said he was pissed at his mom, he had a gun available and he did his deed.

  151. Alex says:

    MLD said, “the kid said he was pissed at his mom, he had a gun available and he did his deed.”

    You’re missing the critical issue:

    All kids get pissed at their moms.

    Guns are readily available to all sorts of folks and kids.

    Why doesn’t every kid who gets pissed at his mom kill the family?

    Why doesn’t every kid or person who has easy access to a gun kill their family?

  152. London says:

    I never said this particular kid was addicted to games. I said that’s my take in general about video games. I don’t know this kid and have no idea what caused him to lose his senses. I wouldn’t even dare to pretend like I did. It is horrible and I have no right whatsoever to make any assumptions about his parenting or his state of mind on the day.
    It was a general discussion about PTSD and soldiers which turned into a discussion about video games in general.

  153. London says:

    Yes. Games are mood altering. Why the hell do you think people play them??

  154. Alex says:

    The article MLD linked seemed to state the kid was addicted to violent video games and that he got very excited when investigators talked to him about the games…whereas he was very unemotional about the real-life killings.

  155. Alex, millions of kids play the games, even at addictive levels – very few kill. So what’s the beef?

    Many parents are mad at their kids – very few hit them. I could go one.

    The kid crossed the line.

    I don’t know why we try to make excuses for the kid. If the same 15 yr old, black in urban downtown goes into a liquor store to rob it, kills 5 people – no one looks to see if he played video games.

    White boy , pastor father – it couldn’t be his fault.

  156. “Yes. Games are mood altering. Why the hell do you think people play them??”

    Is the same true for the old ladies at my mom’s place who play ma jong and bridge everyday? Should I hide heir weapons?

  157. London says:

    Oh wait….I see now that mood altering comment was directed at Alex.
    Funny how for two days now many people, including Alex, have been having a decent conversation with many points of view expressed mostly respectfully (minus my ‘whatever comment perhaps’) and MLD shows up and the whole thing turns into yet another MLD vs Alex debate.
    Have always thought it was Alex instigating these thread killing, never ending, one on one, no one else gets a word in, “discussions”
    Perhaps not the case.

  158. Alex says:

    MLD said, “The kid crossed the line.”

    Yes, no doubt, and he should be held responsible for his actions.

    I’m not advocating against personal responsibility, I’m just recognizing the sound science behind the affects of altered brain chemistry and brain function on violence and aggression and folks snapping and doing irrational things like this kid did…and come to find out he’s addicted to violent video games just proves the thesis even more.

    Not every drunk kills someone…but being drunk alters mood and brain chemistry and increases the odds of a person doing something bad. The drunk is still responsible for their actions, but you can’t deny the influence a substance has on the person’s actions…i.e. a sober man often wouldn’t dream of doing the things he does when he’s drunk…likewise this kid “might” have not gone postal had he not been addicted to violent video games and under their influence.

    The kid still gets justice, but acknowledging contributing factors can go a long way in educating the public (and parents) as to the dangers of violent video game addiction.

  159. London, not in the least- go back and look. My #129 was a general comment on the topic – not addressed to Alex, but you did jump me. My next comment at #138 was addressed to a comment that Nomans had made and then,,, drumroll please – Alex jumped in on my comments.

    Get the facts right London.

  160. London says:

    Actually MLD,
    The kid is and his father was Hispanic, not white and not one single person, except you, said anything about this kid not being responsible for his own actions. Not one!
    You made that up then came on and started insulting everyone just because you think from reading a few articles that you have the whole thing figured out. If you’re so damn smart, perhaps you should call sheriff Huston and give him your brilliant insight.
    I’m sure that h, and the rest of albuquerque would be so comforted to know you got it all figured out.

  161. London says:

    HA!! You haven’t gotten one fact right yet.
    I’ll leave you and Alex to it.

  162. London,
    ” If you’re so damn smart, perhaps you should call sheriff Huston and give him your brilliant insight.”

    It was Sheriff Houston that I quoted from the article. I got my insight from him. I thought that was obvious when my quote included his name.

    ““The motive as articulated was purely that he was frustrated with his mother,” Houston said, explaining that the suspect refused to elaborate. “He was just frustrated with how things were.”

  163. London says:

    Yes. I live in albuquerque. I’ve heard the whole thing all day. It’s all over the news.

  164. Steve Wright says:

    BrianD posting that Obama/Driscoll tweet is mood altering. What in life is NOT mood altering? For better or worse.

    Tell me something, anything, that is somehow mood neutral. Certainly not sleep, eating, urination. Hard to get more basic than those three acts.

    What was Cain’s problem, given the idealistic time of his life? Sin.

    Our entire nature is affected by sin. Has been since the beginning.

    The discussion of our day is just a repeat of the Tipper Gore 80s with a different boogeyman. As a rank sinner with no clue about Christ, the idea that the music I was listening to was leading me to hell (and to do horrible acts of violence to myself and/or others) was an absolute joke. Literally, I laughed at the Christians spending time talking about that. I still remember one show where the Christians were reading obscure punk lyrics from local So Cal punk bands that I listened to. I was excited to see the bands I liked getting some free PR.

    But one kid killed himself when listening to an Ozzy album, so I heard it all the time. And it led to warning labels on my Dead Kennedy albums. Big deal. They did about as much good as the warning labels on cigarettes do today to stop teenage smoking.

    And yet, without a doubt, there were times that the music took me to a very dark place. Especially when I was young, listening to ‘Sabbath Bloody Sabbath’ at the age of ten.

    Just like one in a million kids will be taken from playing Call of Duty, or one in a million will be taken when they fire a weapon for the first time. (Google ‘firing a gun exhilarating’ for almost a billion hits)

    We can expect the world to look for a socio-political solution, but the most violent place I ever stayed was India, where most of our ’causes’ are nonexistent. So the Christians there focused on the life changing message of Christ. Not new nanny-state legislation or outlawing deep wells, machetes, and fire (the three most common means of death I saw each day reported in the local papers).

    Of course, India is the sort of place the Christians don’t debate the existence of Satan either.

  165. Alex says:

    Steve, big difference between mood and an altering of brain function due to a change in brain chemistry that is quantifiable and has cause/effect correlations and consequences. A recent example is the head injuries/concussions of the NFL and the physiological results of severe depression, suicide and going postal etc. It’s as real as that Dove hanging on your building.

    Yes, man’s problem is sin, and sin brought imperfections into our world and the results are manifest in illness, disease, brain malfunction etc.

    Cain was post-fall, post-sin. Very likely his sin had a biological/neurological reality to it…a chemical imbalance and aggression that was not present pre-fall that triggered the violent reaction.

    Again, you seem to present “sin” as a “spiritual only” phenomena, which seems to be very Gnostic. There is biological/physiological/neurological reality…just as you would claim that Jesus is not a spirit-being, He is a literal man who walked this earth in the flesh…He is a biological/physiological/neurological reality…no?

  166. Alex says:

    Steve, when an Alzheimer’s victim starts ranting and cursing, are they in sin? Are they sinning when they cuss out a nurse or family member they no longer remember?

  167. “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”
    Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr

    Oh, Dr. King, murdered by a racist’s agnostic gun, your words still ring true!


    “He had four guns — a .22 rifle with a 10-round ammunition holder, an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle and two 12-gauge shotguns — some of which had been purchased by his father’s friends and sold to the dad privately, police said.”

    “The father, a reformed gang member who used to run a halfway house for ex-cons on his property, had taught his son how to shoot, police said.”

    So the chaplain “dad” was an ex-con, not allowed to purchase firearms, yes? But, as an ex-con, was he allowed to be in possession of firearms purchased privately? I don’t think so.

    The chaplain was short on judgment, to be an ex-con who “somehow” ended up owning guns purchased by “friends”, and then he thought it was a brilliant idea to teach his frikkin’ child to shoot these firearms.

    This is where agnostic guns were picked up by an immature man-child whose arrogant chaplain father fancies himself above the secular law, disregarded the secular common good and had little regard for the Christians within his own pastoral care (his family) and couldn’t prevent his illegitimate but agnostic arsenal from being accessed by a family member who might, just might, be immature and unable to make a sound judgment call that perhaps there could be some solution to a conflict with his mom other than murdering her and siblings then nearly going out in a suicide-by-cop after considering decimating a Walmart full of innocents.

    Yes, this is obviously a “spiritual” problem, because someone was possessed by “The Spirit of Stoopid” and “The Demon of Arrogance”.

    …ok, rant done, for the moment.

    Alex, you sell weapons, you are potentially closer to all of this than the rest of us.

    I’m asking honestly and sincerely, what can :: you :: suggest to keep stupid and arrogant men and women like Griego and Lanza from providing arsenals to their mentally disturbed sons?

    I’m listening, I really am.

  168. And, Alex, I’m finding that you and I are in agreement on many of these subjects, especially the conditioning that comes with violent video games.

    My preceding rant is not directed at you, and my question is entirely and completely sincere.

  169. “Nehemiah told police that he had taken both of the guns from his parents’ closet”

  170. London says:

    If I lived in the area of town where that family lived, I would have guns and my kids would dang well be taught how to use them.
    It’s a rural area, not downtown we are talking about. Can’t talk a snake or a coyote outta eating your animals. No matter how nicely you ask them.

    Not comfortable making a judgement about the man’s level of arrogance based on gun ownership either. Nothing I’m hearing on the news or elsewhere from people who actually knew him would lead me to believe he was arrogant.

  171. quikstart says:

    The first family on earth had a murder in it according to the bible and there were no video games or guns at fault. I watched a man (bouncer) die in the 1970’s on a sidewalk outside of a bar after his throat was slit open by an intoxicated young soldier that didn’t tolerate being asked to leave the establishment. In the 1990’s, I observed police and ambulances rush to a mass murder at a local restaurant of innocent diners as I exited a local grocery store, a drugged and intoxicated soldier with a shotgun was rambling about gays in the military as he pulled the trigger. In 2009, a very well known and respected businessman, deacon in the church, basketball coach at a Christian private school in my hometown suddenly murdered his wife, chased his two children down and shot them at point blank range. I once was stopped by a tenant when I was a resident manager of a large housing complex that reported blood curdling screams coming from the children living next door only later to find out a mother was filling the tub with scolding hot water and dipping her disobedient children into the water. I’ve known countless married men and women that have abused each other, betrayed their vows, beat their children and sought refuge in drugs and alcohol, in and out of the church. Evil exist, we may label it as demonic or mental illness or chemical imbalances or craziness but it is real. We can take away the guns, build new treatment centers, escape into our survival compounds and lock the doors but when we turn on the lights even there we find it’s ugly shadow in ourselves. Redemption, salvation, and victory over evil is ultimately found only in the crucified God that beckons each of us to die to this world, overcome evil with good, and this requires a new birth. Love does win.

  172. incognito says:

    A stroke, brain damage, an accident, dementia and so on your personality will change it is a fact more sure then gravity. frontal lobe epilepsy, psychosis, mother lock you in a van for three days while she turns tricks and you bang your little three year old head against the van walls. It will change your personality, more sure then gravity, more sure then the resurrection, far more sure. I could go on, but wont because it would serve no purpose. Those that have a presupposition will hold to it on either side of the issue. I have a presupposition massive abuse to a child effects the child. Now I do not see this in this child, it seems he had some mental health issues access to a massive arsenal and a will to kill.

    Now being reminded that I am a spiritual slut on a day to day basis in the faith family and I am one step away from becoming a Jeffery Dalmer want a be . I never wanted to kill anyone, ever. Called names, mocked hassled and so on all I ever wanted was community. Granted that is pathetic and I should grow a pair and move on but that is a different post. I offer what I offered before, five people were blown away for no real reason what so ever. It proved nothing, no great theological truth was realized, a family was destroyed and a community wounded. No greater good, just sadness and pain. An arbitrary action and random event. If it was not try imagining that, a purposeful event of some divine being. If that does not make one an atheist I dont know what wound?

  173. Alex,
    “Steve, when an Alzheimer’s victim starts ranting and cursing, are they in sin? Are they sinning when they cuss out a nurse or family member they no longer remember?”

    Of course they are in sin – what did you think they became sinless? Don’t you realize, that in the situation you present, the only thing the Alzheimer’s did was remove the inhibitions and reveal who the real person is.

    Let’s look at your brain chemistry thought. So, the life long alcoholic (I imagine there is some brain chemistry changes going on there) – is he in sin the next time he get’s drunk?

  174. Em says:

    i kinda, sorta agree with MLD’s #171 … our flesh is corrupt from our birth … we are helpless to rid ourselves of it and it is the fact of it, not the degree of it that has us condemned …
    however, we do have societal responsibilities to govern our conduct – obviously, eh?
    and along that line of thinking the question arises: just how much control should society exert over the conduct of the individual? there’s been a whole lot of discussion of just what our responsibility is where child abuse is concerned and, while shooting an innocent child is horrible beyond words, children are killed and maimed daily by more acceptable means – wounded souls, but no messy overt mayhem – it isn’t easy
    if we conclude that gun ownership is what causes mayhem, then get rid of guns – period.
    but, if it is simply that guns are the easiest means to commit mayhem, then another question arises: do we confiscate guns, leave the individual without means of self defense or do we require the individual to take very, very seriously his stewardship with severe penalties for not doing so? that kid, who now grabs dad’s (or mom’s or his own) gun(s) and goes on a shooting rampage can actually do more damage with an automobile which fact will occur to them pretty quickly, i think … then what do we do?

  175. Em says:

    correction – reference was to MLD’s 173

  176. Michael says:

    First, according to law enforcement, the father was legally allowed to purchase weapons.
    Whether he was wise too do so is another debate.
    Second, all the information I have gathered both publicly and privately indicates that he was anything but arrogant…in fact there is much to commend him as a damn good man.

    Third, the mockery of the spiritual here is beyond my understanding.

    No one here suggested that there are not other factors that contributed to this tragedy.

    God uses secondary causes…if you are going to be comforted by God it will usually be with human arms, if He blesses you financially it is through someone writing a check.

    The enemy uses secondary causes as well.
    It is my inclination at this point to believe that this child had undiagnosed and untreated mental issues that were indeed worsened by violent video games.

    The child will and should receive justice…but if we are to prevent such horrors from happening again we must take all the factors that led to this one into consideration.

  177. Alex says:

    G no offense taken at all, I think you ask a very wise question and ironically, we are in a lot of agreement on these issues.

    Some misjudge my being a Federal Firearm’s Licensed dealer and 2nd Amendment advocate as somehow not recognizing and respecting the inherent danger in the inanimate objects or “tools” which are firearms. I similarly respect the power of the automobile and its ability to be the tool of death.

    G asked, “I’m asking honestly and sincerely, what can :: you :: suggest to keep stupid and arrogant men and women like Griego and Lanza from providing arsenals to their mentally disturbed sons?”

    Good point and good question. There were obvious issues with Lanza and obvious issues with the Griego son…and the parents were highly negligent in their parenting by allowing the violent video game addiction and by allowing access to their legally owned arsenals to “disturbed” young men as you accurately put it.

    I think there is Personal Responsibility in both situations. Personal responsibility of the young guys who went postal and much responsibility on the parents’ shoulders for being negligent.

    What to do about legislating parents being ‘not’ negligent and stupid is a whole other ballgame. I don’t know that you can legislate stupidity away.

    I know there are biometric gun safes that I sell that rely on the parent’s fingerprint to quickly open the safe giving access to a firearm in case of threat…this is a practical tool that would block a troubled youth from having access to the arsenal.

    I also think that we need more focus on Mental Health and removing the “taboo” from this field of Science from the Fundamentalist Christian church. Psychology and meds are “of the devil!”…ya right, lets just pray the crazy away…

    I think a lot is reaping and sowing. Parents who neglect their kids for ministry or other career, parents who possibly abuse, parents who allow violent video games to be an addiction in their home, parents who allow access to an arsenal of weapons to their troubled teen (and they knew he had major issues, especially Lanza)…kind of reap what they’ve sown in some cases…unfortunately Society reaps it as well…but Society does much of the same sowing.

    I think we need to protect the rights of those who are responsible, while calling attention to those who aren’t responsible and how they can be more responsible.

    Again, you’ll never legislate away stupidity and going postal. You can only try to mitigate it and you need to preserve the rights of others to use the “tools” responsibly…much akin to automobiles. We don’t ban Cars or Booze b/c of drunk drivers who kill folks routinely.

  178. Em says:

    ” if we are to prevent such horrors from happening again we must take all the factors that led to this one into consideration.” amen … but, my goodness, that seems to be a tall order – it calls for maturity, not a knee-jerk, emotional, one size fits all solution … and prayer
    guns do have a mystique that appeals to immature minds, i.e., “Hatfields and McCoys” … however, it will be a sad day for us – IMHO – when other immature minds conclude that John Q American is immature to own a gun … could be we are, tho – duunno

    post script – for my part, if i’m going to be shot, i’d rather be shot by a gun than an arrow as someone here suggested as an alternative … and, somehow, i think i’d prefer that to being blown up or run down by a car also … queer things to even think about

  179. Alex says:

    Michael, my beef is that you have, in my opinion, a tendency to over-spiritualize the stuff to the point of Charismania. I think it sends the wrong message sometimes.

    Miracles today are often what we make them. Medical miracles. Life changes, repentance through practical means like breaking addiction, literally turning away from bad behavior and sowing in a new direction etc.

    Look at your defeatism with Calvary Chapel etc. You say stuff won’t change. You don’t really believe in the Charismania miracles you are suggesting here.

    If there are real miracles in the Charismania manner you seem to suggest…we’d see some real miracles. We dont’ see them like you portray. We see reality. We see reaping and sowing, we see the results of sinful acts, sinful men, sinful pastors, sinful church constructs, sinful society etc. It’s not so mystical. It not some ethereal war. It’s right here in front of us, we can touch it and taste it and see it and smell it.

    Sin is synonymous with the dysfunction and bad brain function, it is the fall. The reality of brain ailment (including Alzheimer’s…and MLD unwittingly makes the point I was making above with Steve…is “sin” in the context of the corruption of mankind’s being).

    The devil is us. (though he is likely a real separate entity as well somehow).

  180. Michael says:

    I haven’t written a word on miracles on this thread.
    I have not once denied the existence of secondary causes or personal responsibility.
    Not once.
    I have said and will continue to say that we war not only against those things, but against powers and principalities as well and that factor must be recognized and considered.

    “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
    (Ephesians 6:10–13 ESV)

    You have a problem with that, take it up with Paul, whose wisdom I trust more than yours.

  181. J.U. says:

    This seems like the most spirited debate I’ve seen on here in a long time. Instead of debating a fine point of doctrine, the debate comes closer to a modern Christian’s interpretation of life in the world.

    Somehow it reminds me of a quote, which I will get all wrong. Something about whether the church is timeless in its interpretation of events, or is it just twenty years behind the times.

    By church is meant the saints. We live in a scientific world. I’m in school right now trying to understand man’s understanding of the mind and body and where we fit our religion into that secular frame is certainly a subject of debate.

    This discussion is about gun control and psychology and video games and stress and kids today and sin and the devil. Those topics are revealing a lot about each person’s faith. Don’t ask me. I don’t have any answers. I’m just noticing the emotions in this debate.

    I am very sad about the loss of life and the culture of violence we have in this country. What happened to the cult of the peacemaker? Christ had so much to say about how we treat our brothers and sisters. He said love was the most important thing. Seems that the Beatles got it right. Why can’t we?

  182. papiaslogia says:

    Maybe its time to have a thread on the subject of evil….or Satan? 😉

    I remember sitting in SOM with David Hocking teaching the course in Theology(it was a good class, Friday mornings before Chucks class), when the subject of Angels and demons came about. We had a full class with lots of visitors, and David made a point of saying how serious a subject it was. It was during that time that I asked if we could open the class in prayer….David looked around and basically made a point that the enemy would love for us to NOT pray, and that he had forgotten to pray before starting the class.

    I don’t get why people who believe in God also cannot see that there is a devil who opposes. Here’s a link from BLB:


  183. “I am very sad about the loss of life and the culture of violence we have in this country.”

    have to remind us here that you’ll be hard pressed to find a country less violent – Switzerland? the Scandinavian lands? …

  184. papiaslogia says:

    JU “I’m in school right now trying to understand man’s understanding of the mind and body and where we fit our religion into that secular frame is certainly a subject of debate.”

    Good luck with that approach. You should have a fixed foundation on the truth of the Scriptures and then try to figure out man’s understanding of the mind and body, rather than your approach. Man’s theories on these subjects don’t agree with one another, so who you gonna trust?

    In college, I had a psych prof who asked my in front of the class(big theater like seating, and I was sitting near the back), what I thought was man’s biggest problem? I replied, “Man’s biggest problem is sin. We all have a sin nature.” He brushed away my answer with a swipe of his hand, and looked at another guy sitting nearer him(a few rows up from me) “What do you think is man’s biggest problem?” The guy says, “I agree with the guy back there!” 😉

    Unless you have a world view based on Scripture, you will be “tossed to and fro” when it comes to truth.

  185. Alex says:

    Michael said, “You have a problem with that, take it up with Paul, whose wisdom I trust more than yours.”

    The same Paul taught the Qualifications, which you seem to claim no pastor can meet…so they are somehow invalid in enforcing.

  186. Alex says:

    I call it Selective Fundamentalism…a thesis I’m working on.

    At least within Theological Liberalism there seems to be a more consistent rationale and application. Fundies tend to pick and choose and appeal to Paul literally when it supports their position…yet explain explicit words of Paul away when it doesn’t fit the reality of their world.

  187. Alex says:

    Papias said, ‘Unless you have a world view based on Scripture, you will be “tossed to and fro” when it comes to truth.”

    I don’t think it’s that simple as illustrated by Selective Fundamentalism…as “interpretation”, “proper exegesis” and “the correct hermeneutic” are all subjective and functions of interpretation before even getting to the simple meaning of the text.

    The only consistency in Fundamentalism is the inconsistency in which fundies vacillate between “simple and literal” and “complex and context and it really doesn’t mean that”

  188. papiaslogia says:

    Not taking the bait Alex. 😉

    You’re on a “subjective -objective” roll, and we’ve seen where that goes.

  189. Alex says:

    Papias, it all boils down to that debate…every last issue. It underpins every discussion we ever have on here…it is the reality and truth…whether folks realize it or not.

  190. J.U. says:

    Papiaslogia, I don’t comment on here often so you probably don’t know my story. I’m 65 years old and I work in health care as a CNA. I’m currently studying to be a nurse.

    The Lord has changed my life and I try to follow what I’ve learned from the bible. But, believe me, if you are rushed to the hospital with a bleeding artery,you might want the doctor’s to know more about physiology than theology.

    Please, I’m not mocking the faith. I try very hard to be faithful. But this is a modern society with many advances in science. Prayer and the bible belong at the hospital to comfort and treat the sick and their family. But when someone is gravely ill or injured, they are rushed to the hospital, not the church.

    Again, I’m not disrespecting the faith. I’m trying to figure out where modern life and science fits with the faith. My comment was that it seems I’m not the only one with that conflict. This conversation has proven that to me.

  191. Alex is a definite heretic when he says “The devil is us. (though he is likely a real separate entity as well somehow).”

    The devil is not me, the devil is not in me, the devil has no control over me. I (and all Christians) are occupied only by the King of Kings.

    So Alex – if you be the devil… well, at least you are honest.

  192. J.U. says:

    Em, I agree, violence and death are not just in the U.S. However, it does appear that, like Hollywood, we do it the best. If you want to read about mass murders, the dateline with be some city or town in America.

    The list of countries that appear to be less violent than us is a rather long list. I know some nations have revolution and killing in the streets by the police and military. Some countries repress their people and ethnic violence is rampant.

    But the U.S. seems to be number one with a bullet when it comes to violence. Since I live here, that is a concern to me. But you are correct that sin is everywhere and violence is everywhere and hate is everywhere. It is more a matter of degree.

  193. Michael says:

    I have never argued that the Pauline qualifications are invalid.

  194. Alex says:

    MLD said, “The devil is not me, the devil is not in me, the devil has no control over me. I (and all Christians) are occupied only by the King of Kings.”

    Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Messiah, quoted in the “inerrant, infallible, perfect, literal Word of God” said to Peter, an Apostle, “Get behind me satan!”

    interesting, no?

  195. Alex says:

    Michael, you have consistently argued that the Pauline Qualifications are “impossible” for pastors to meet, therefore they are not really enforceable, unless I’ve missed something.

    I’ve stated often, that if Fundamentalism is correct and the words are to be taken literally, then we have way too many pastors, as most are Un-Qualified…to which you have always pushed back….no?

  196. I will argue that our codifying of Pauline advice to Timothy for recognizing leaders and placing them goes beyond the scope and intention of the text.

    I would love to see what would come from the pen of Paul if he knew the church would make his list determinative for all ages. It might not change much but it is at least interesting to try and conceive what we would do with their words.

  197. “Get behind me satan!”
    OT status before the cross and before the HS was in us.

  198. Alex says:

    MLD, is Jesus Christ a “heretic” for addressing Peter, an Apostle of His, as “satan!”???


    …kind of throws a wrench in your statement above, don’t it?

  199. Steve Wright says:

    So the argument now is video games actually changes brain chemistry with the comparison to repeated concussions or to the disease of Alzheimers. Selectively of course, given the millions that play the same games with no change in brain chemistry.

    But shooting off high powered weapons at paper human targets is mood altering of the simple enjoyment sort. Squeezing the trigger, hearing that loud sound while feeling the recoil of power in your hand, while celebrating putting a clean hole through the skull of the paper target can’t possibly do something horrible to alter the human brain like punching a button on a game controller and watching a screen.

  200. Michael says:

    All biblical standards for righteousness are impossible to consistently keep in a fallen world by fallen people.
    That does not change the fact that they are standards.
    How we deal with all of our failures, pastoral and otherwise does contain an element of subjectivity.

  201. Alex says:

    Steve W said, “given the millions that play the same games with no change in brain chemistry.”

    Incorrect. The studies show changes in “all” who participated in the studies that played the violent games for an extended period of time.

    The issue is that “most” don’t then go and kill their families…but changes that increase aggression and aggressive tendencies are as real as that Dove on your building.

    Not everyone with PTSD goes postal…but most who go postal had PTSD or some underlying mental disorder.

  202. Steve Wright says:

    Before video games (beyond Pong) there was Dungeons and Dragons. Another Christian boogeyman I heard while growing up. Fantasy world you know. Leads to murder and suicide. And no Christian parent would ever let his kid play such a ‘role-playing’ game.

    And to quote the aforementioned boogeyman, Ozzy, ‘Satan laughing spreads his wings’

    The more the enemy gets God’s Church to doubt and argue over even his existence, much less his influence, the more he laughs…

    We wrestle not against flesh and blood…(oh wait, that’s Scripture – what was I thinking quoting it as if it had some sort of authority and truth)

  203. Alex says:

    Steve W said, “We wrestle not against flesh and blood…(oh wait, that’s Scripture – what was I thinking quoting it as if it had some sort of authority and truth)”

    1 Timothy three, Titus One, Matthew eighteen, 1 Timothy five: nineteen through twenty-two, etc etc etc etc.

    Selective Fundamentalism…

  204. Alex says:

    MLD said, “OT status before the cross and before the HS was in us.”

    Yes, your spin around the explicit simple meaning…yet everything else you don’t like is set in stone for today…got it.

    MLD on something he can’t resolve: “That was then, this is now!”

    MLD on something he doesn’t like: “Well it says it right there in the inerrant, infallible, perfect bible! You can’t have a different take or your a heretic! It means the same thing for all of time!”

    Duplicity, contradiction etc etc. Same stuff, different discussion topic.

  205. J.U. your point taken as we seem to be mostly couch potatoes absorbing life vicariously thru video feeds (guess that’s the right term) of one kind or another and it looks like that stuff – centered around emotion, not reason – becomes reality for many and it is very violent – you are correct

    and …

    God keep you, Michael – you’re fighting the good fight against a whole lot of … was going to say stupidity (it is) … against a whole lot of shallow, egotistical nonsense 😀

    now i’m gone

  206. So I don’t get accused of arguing with Alex – let me address this to whom it may concern.

    If you don’t think something changed the course of man’s relationship with God at the cross …

  207. “Well it says it right there in the inerrant, infallible, perfect bible!”

    and I have never used those words – I never, let me be clear, never feel compelled to qualify the Bible.

  208. Steve Wright says:

    Alex, just because the years have shown you incapable of being trusted, keeping your word, properly understanding and reporting on reality, arguing with Scripture in favor of the views of Mormonism and your atheist friends, and an all around boorishness so as not to bow to your will and select cause does not mean I (or others here) are selective in our reading the Bible as authoritative.

    I will give you this though. Wasn’t sure even you could manage to turn a discussion about a horrible murder rampage into your pet discussion. Yesterday I logged on and saw a 5-5 in the recent comments. All Alex – went to your website and saw almost 100 visitors online when less than 16 were here and could not figure out why you keep your tremendous insights from so many.

  209. PP Vet says:

    Vigil at Calvary ABQ tonight.

  210. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    Nonnie said:

    “Why, why, why????? Why would he do this?”

    After reading the news story, this is what I get from it;

    This kid was raised in a home where guns were prevalent, his Dad and him used to go practice shooting often. There was a sign in front of the house that said protected by Smith and Wesson. The kid was obsessed with violent video games. This kid seemed to have an unhealthy worship of Guns and the Military hence his obsession with wearing military fatigues around the nieghborhood. The number of weapons and type of weapons in the home seemed excesssive. Also, being that the father was an ex felon isn’t it illegal for him to own guns? This family used to go to my old Calvary Chapel in Montebello but I didn’t know them as it was before my time. Why would a christian home have this many guns in it? Why would a christian home promote an unhealthy worship of the military because that is what you do when you put guns and the falg as an idol (the kid a picture of himself in fatigues with a flag in the backround?). Why would a parent school their 15 year old kid in the use of assualt weapons? Why as Christians are we even having guns in the home period? WWJD!!! People often use that term foir trifiling matters but how come when it comes to the weightier matters they fail to apply that slogan? We serve a God that hates violence but yet many Christians in this country worship the military and are obssesed with guns.

  211. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    Many Christians will try to lay this all at the feet of demonic possession but remember the Devil is in the details and there is still human responsibility.

  212. Alex says:

    Steve Wright, I think your recent comments about me are biased, judgmental and abusive and I think they should be moderated by the host (to be consistent with expressed rules that have been applied to me) and you should probably be banned for a period of time if you can’t refrain from that abusive behavior.

    I did not engage you in that manner.

  213. If I were the devil as Alex claimed he is – that would be my response to Steve also.

  214. Alex says:

    MLD, you are doing similar with your comment. It’s abusive. Appears there is a double standard of the application and enforcement of the “rules” on here.

  215. LOL – I broke the rules by agreeing with you that you are the devil? That’s quite a blog rule – Agreement not allowed here. 🙂

  216. London says:

    Oh for Pete’s sake.
    Can the three of you grow the hell up and quit making every single thread about your own personal pissing match??
    Some of us care about this topic and really are sick of the three of you acting like idiots on every single thread day in and day out.
    Give it a rest or take it elsewhere!

  217. Steve Wright says:

    Alex, I was simply correcting your misunderstanding. As I was talking about the topics on this thread, and making a point about Scripture’s authority you off topic cited your favorite pastor passages and accused me of selective fundamentalism (a thesis you are working on as you noted above). As if somehow I ignore those verses.

    You accused Michael of the same a few posts earlier, when he quoted Paul with authority. And you told papias that every discussion here must come down to a subjective/objective argument of Scripture – whether we ‘realize’ it or not

    The simple fact is that, other than you and one other poster, the rest of the regular commentators come to the Scriptures (ALL Scripture) with humility, believing they are intended by God to direct, inform, and guide our lives – especially given the limitations of our human knowledge when it comes to the things of the spirit world.

    We may come to some different conclusions. But we all come as students when we approach the Word. You come as the Word’s critic, master, and final-say.

    I simply clarified (again) my reasons for not further engagement are not in fact due to selective Biblical pick and choose, as you expressed. No, they are 100% “Alex-based”.

    But you do seem to sense Michael’s current weakness and are in full ‘blog-bully’ mode against him in this thread. So maybe he will do your bidding and ban me accordingly.

  218. Alex says:

    Steve, I strongly disagree and the post you made prior was abusive and not very qualified or pastoral in the least…according to the same bible.

  219. Alex says:

    London, I very much care about this topic…I lived some of it. Violence in the home is real and so is mental illness in the home. It touches “God’s anointed”

  220. Alex says:

    Steve, I’ve got you pegged. You have CCSP Syndrome. You are incapable of admitting when you are wrong and apologizing and asking for forgiveness. Part of the toxic dynamic in your Tribe.

  221. London says:

    Alex @220.
    No one who has been around here for any length of time would be confused enough to think I’m a fan, but I have to admit, although I don’t agree with a lot of what you said,i do think you were being respectful and contributing along with everyone else to the overall conversation.
    A lot of people got to speak and bring up many different ways to look at the topics at hand. Something that rarely happens here any more.
    It’s an important conversation that needs to happen and I for one appreciated your contribution this time.

  222. Candace says:

    Steve Wright is a Pastor? A Calvary pastor?

  223. Candace says:

    I’m gaping in amazement at the crap Alex gets handed with two hands.

    He brought his contributions and got spit on.

  224. Alex says:

    London, thank you. I have moderated my behavior as the critiques of the past have had merit and I needed to act differently to participate on here. I have also apologized many times for it.

  225. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    Alex said:

    “Steve, I’ve got you pegged. You have CCSP Syndrome. You are incapable of admitting when you are wrong and apologizing and asking for forgiveness. Part of the toxic dynamic in your Tribe.


  226. Wow! Alex declares himself the devil and a fan club forms.

  227. Ok, long post warning…

    My definition of “arrogant” is a simple one. Someone who is arrogant believes the laws and rules might be there for others but not for them. Gringo and Lanza enabled their family members to gain access to firearms which were in their possession, plain and simple. If the guns weren’t there then no one would have been shot.

    I have a pool. When I have grandchildren I will have to take great care and expense to fence the pool with a barrier which will ensure the safety of ALL children who are minors. I have a wall around my property which keeps out the uninvited, adults and children alike. These preventative measures are are the price of ownership of what will prove to be deadly to someone who doesn’t know how to swim.

    Arrogance, on the part of Griego and Lanza is their not locking away the weapons in such a way as to make it impossible for anyone to overpower the owners and take possession of them.

    My mockery of any sentimentally misapplied spiritual analysis of this or any subject is simple. Jesus is Lord of All the creation. We humans, and especially Jesus’ followers, are the stewards of creation, and we are responsible for ourselves, each other, especially the weak and unwieldy among us, and we must take appropriate measures to protect the innocents from the ones who make arrogant and evil choices to do harm because of their selfishness, rebellion or mental illness.

    Prayer doesn’t design, engineer or create a fence around a pool, and being an exemplary, Biblical, righteous Christian doesn’t influence outcome of a fence, but understanding the science behind architecture does. By all accounts Frank Lloyd Wright was not a religious Christian but he was a stellar architect.

    Prayer doesn’t place a hardened gun locker with an impenetrable combination lock away from family members, common sense and anticipating deadly outcomes does. But a loving parent, spiritual or not, will make this their committed outcome. Like Sting used to sing about the godless commies during the Cold War, “I hope the Russians love their children too…”

    I got accused of not being a believer, and that is nothing new, but here is what I do believe, we are sometimes too stuck in the weeds that we miss the big picture from our sacred texts.

    Why is it that we conveniently miss the passage where Jesus told the accuser and adversary He Himself was facing and staring down that we are not to tempt The LORD Our God? Jesus answered this very thing to the evil impulse which beckoned Him to play fast and loose with the scientifically observable secular law of gravity.

    Jesus addressed the trifecta of temptation common to all humans
    Legitimate bodily demands

    Hunger, in the story, represents the immediate demands of my body
    Power is about me being above the rules
    Greed is fear of losing my stuff

    Here’s the temptation…
    I’ve got a gun, so I will intimidate you into satisfying the demands I feel from my body

    I’ve got a gun so I will not be dominated by any power, foreign or domestic. I am a law unto myself, a rugged, self sufficient individual.

    I’ve got a gun so when the coming economic collapse that I fear so much takes place I will die to defend my right to have my stuff and kill anyone who dares try to take it from me

    Sorry for the long post

  228. Em says:

    when we start delving into one another’s psyches here, the argument is lost

    Em’s list of stupid remarks on this thread (beginning at #228 and going from last to first)
    “Prayer doesn’t design, engineer or create…, and being an exemplary, Biblical, righteous Christian doesn’t influence outcome ”
    “Steve, I’ve got you pegged… You are incapable of admitting when you are wrong and apologizing and asking for forgiveness.”
    “maybe he [Michael] will do your [Alex’] bidding and ban me [Steve Wright] accordingly.”
    “you [Steve Wright] should probably be banned for a period of time if you can’t refrain from that abusive behavior.”
    ” is Jesus Christ a “heretic” for addressing Peter, an Apostle of His, as “satan!””
    “Alex is a definite heretic when he says “The devil is us.”
    “Fundies tend to pick and choose and appeal to Paul literally when it supports their position…..”
    “Michael, my beef is that you have, in my opinion, a tendency to over-spiritualize the stuff …”
    i probably missed a few and glossed over a few (my own)
    before these it had been a pretty good discussion IMO — somebody else can figure out what started the slide

    aaand i ain’t gonna respond to any umbrage fomented by my list 😆

  229. Fly on a Wall says:

    “Here’s the temptation…
    I’ve got a gun, so I will intimidate you into satisfying the demands I feel from my body

    I’ve got a gun so I will not be dominated by any power, foreign or domestic. I am a law unto myself, a rugged, self sufficient individual.

    I’ve got a gun so when the coming economic collapse that I fear so much takes place I will die to defend my right to have my stuff and kill anyone who dares try to take it from me”

    Interesting stuff. Definitely through the point of a view of an anti-gun person.

    But here’s another one: I’ve got a gun because it tells intruders that I’m not a helpless female in a bad neighborhood. I’ve got a gun because if it’s between me shooting someone or the “possibility” of me being tortured then killed, then I want possibility to equal zero.

    I had to comment. I couldn’t control myself. But please please please, let’s not turn this into a gun / anti gun debate, as many did about Sandy Hook. Lets see this as a tragedy and what we can do as a community to prevent it from happening again.

  230. Em,
    Seriously, you take umbrage at my statement?

    “Prayer doesn’t design, engineer or create a fence around a pool, and being an exemplary, Biblical, righteous Christian doesn’t influence outcome of a fence, but understanding the science behind architecture does.”

    Asking, beseeching God, communing with Him AS you work, sure, as long as you compartmentalize your words and imaginations of conversation and recalling scripture separately from measuring, doing math conversions from sixteenths of an inch to decimal or better yet metric, or while you calculate load bearing mass distribution, or better yet, material specification research to meet building codes which have been established to protect people from building unsafe things.

    I just completed redesigning graphics which serve Critical Care Nurses in 10 publications, all the while being in awe of Jesus and His goodness that at 57 I have the privilege of a great career, and digital art tools at my disposal to do my job. Spirituality must be pervasive in our lives, even while we do science.

  231. PP Vet says:

    “Spirituality must be pervasive in our lives, even while we do science.”


    As Mother Teresa said, “I have to be holy to do what I do, and you have to be holy to do what you do.”

  232. ( |o ====::: says:

    Thanks for considering and dialoging.

    The fact is, just as Sandy Hook, this IS unavoidably about guns, and mental illness, and about parenting, and about responsibilities. Both Lanza and Griego failed as fellow citizens to protect innocents from their children who chose evil. This is spirituality lived out in a deadly practical manner.

    Your post speaks of your fear, and I get it, being a husband and a father of daughters.
    What are your thoughts and feelings about Jesus’ statement to His adversary?


  233. Fly,
    “Interesting stuff. Definitely through the point of a view of an anti-gun person.”

    I’m not an anti gun person, I am a pro-Jesus person who just cannot reconcile the American idolatry which manifests itself in gun ownership at the expense of the lives of innocents.

  234. Em,

    adj. stu·pid·er, stu·pid·est
    1. Slow to learn or understand; obtuse.
    2. Tending to make poor decisions or careless mistakes.
    3. Marked by a lack of intelligence or care; foolish or careless: a stupid mistake.
    4. Dazed, stunned, or stupefied.
    5. Pointless; worthless: a stupid job.
    A stupid or foolish person.
    [Latin stupidus, from stupre, to be stunned.]
    stupid·ly adv.
    stupid·ness n.

    So how does what I said,

    “Prayer doesn’t design, engineer or create a fence around a pool, and being an exemplary, Biblical, righteous Christian doesn’t influence outcome of a fence, but understanding the science behind architecture does.”

    fit this definition, sourced from the dictionary?

  235. Candace says:

    Who made you the arbiter, Em?

  236. Em says:

    G., hard to resist your challenge, i will just observe that your assertion distorts the obvious – and the inference that some of us sit, praying and waiting for the mountain to move? well, IMV, that assertion fits your description above … remember, i didn’t say anyone here WAS stupid, just found some comments not up to the usual clear headed, constructive and reason standard we maintain here 😎

  237. Em says:

    Candace, presumptuously editorializing – but arbitrator? never – that is someone else’s job

  238. Em says:

    G., you’re a busy man with many things on your mind, but …
    Seriously, you take umbrage at my statement?” say what? 😯

    time for me to depart the yard …

  239. Candace says:

    Not arbitrator, Em, arbiter. Not the same.

    You did call them stupid remarks.

  240. ( |o )====::: says:

    Equivocation much?

  241. Em says:

    Candace, yes, i guess they are … my “opinions;” do i need a bestower to do that? 🙂

  242. ( |o )====::: says:

    How did my comment miss your standard?

  243. Em says:

    G., not much, but more than i really want to 🙄

  244. Em says:

    G., this is fun … they didn’t miss my standard … but let’s stop this before we create another weaker, but weirder, version of A & MLD here – where’s the 3 monkeys smilie thing?

  245. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    “I’m not an anti gun person, I am a pro-Jesus person who just cannot reconcile the American idolatry which manifests itself in gun ownership at the expense of the lives of innocents.”


  246. Bob says:

    “I’m not an anti gun person, I am a pro-Jesus person who just cannot reconcile the American idolatry which manifests itself in gun ownership at the expense of the lives of innocents.”

    Many of you here neither own guns or have ever shot them. Over the years I have done both and also been commissioned by the US Government to use a gun/weapon with deadly force to stop someone who intends to do the same to innocent others.

    The problem with this whole gun debate is two fold:

    1. How do we protect the innocent?
    2. How do we defend the rights of people granted as a citizen of the USA?

  247. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    Saying that this kid was demonicly possessed is way oversimplfying the issue.

    Was he influenced by Demonic spirits? I believe yes
    Was he possessed by a Demonic spirit? Doesn’t appear to be after reading the story as he was calculatingly cold in how he killed everyone.
    Was this kid taught to glorify guns? I think the answer is YES and when you glorify guns you also glorify violence something that Jesus hates.
    Was the Dad irresponsible in first of all having all those weapons when he has children? absolutely
    Was the Dad irresponsible in going out with his son shooting all the time? Of Course, this is a 15 yeard old boy that is wet behind the ears in the ways of life.
    Was the Dad breaking the law in even having the guns when he is a an ex felon? I don’t know the exact legalities but he could’ve been breaking the law. Where are all the pastors who love to qoute Romans 13, on this one?
    Was this kid worshipping the Military and Flag leading to a Milita mentality? Certainly appears so.
    Was thsi kid influenced by the violent video games he was obssessed with? Very likely seems to have been. What we allow in our eyes and ears does have an effect on us, I took a calls on this in college.

    All of the above contribute to a situation like the one that occured in Albequrqe, seems like the demonic possession thing really wasn’t needed as the Son was brought up to glorify guns thereby glorifying violence and then the Dad puts the kid in the position to be around them and even become an skilled shooter. Let’s not pin this one on Demonic possession when there were plenty of earthly contributors to this massacre. What was sick about all this is the uncles statement about not making this a plotical issue. It’s like dude, you’re family members have just been murdered brutally by your nephew who may spend the rest of his life in prison and you’re worried about this becoming a political issue. Some people never get it.

  248. Just gonna throw this out there. But, first let me qualify my statement with this: I am a full supporter of the 2nd amendment and have no wish for more gun laws. I said that ’cause I know that Alex will have something to say about this post.

    Every piece of technology we have in this world can alter your habits, your thinking and how you react to the world around you. When we say “Guns, don’t kill people. People kill people.” We oversimplify the issue.
    I grew up in a gun culture. From a young age, I was taught to respect guns. I was taught how to handle them and how not to handle them. Thus the gun, by it’s very presence in the culture I grew up in necessitates a change in human behavior.
    I went into the military and learned even more about different types of guns. Thus my habits and behavior were modified further.
    I went to Iraq, in 2005. I had two weapons, a Beretta 9mm and an M4 rifle close at hand for over a year. Along with various machine guns that mounted on my squads vehicles. I have seen first hand how behavior changes when men are armed and given power. Our platoon leadership, of which I was one, kept a close rein on our men. Other platoons did not. I did not witness it and have no first hand knowledge, just know what I was told afterwards. Let me tell you, men have bad hearts and when you train them to kill and give them the means, they want to. That is why we kept a close rein, we saw the evil that exists in men’s hearts. Even though, we did right and made sure to follow the ROE (Rules of Engagement) one of my men still told me that he wanted to go out with another platoon so he could do “crazy stuff”. This was a man I depended on and always did his duty and more. I did not think it was affecting me till I got home. It was a depressor not to be riding around armed to the hilt and king of the hill, even though I had never exercised that power in a bad way. You don’t act that way unless you have the firepower to back it up. Thus, guns were a factor in changing how a man acts and even in bringing out the sin inherent in every man.
    Every technology we use changes us. Cell phones, guns, video games heck even shovels changed the world at one time.
    This is not to blame the technology. Sin always crouches close to hand waiting for it’s chance. The devil and demons though do the same thing. Technology affects you and (not taking away personal responsibility) demons can affect you to. Look at Judas, his sins seems pretty small, thievery and covetousness, till Satan entered in to him. Then he betrayed the Son of Man for a pittance.
    There are a lot of causes for why mass murders happen. We can try to address them, but we aren’t God and are sure to miss one though. But, for God’s sake, if you call yourself christian, don’t dismiss spiritual forces of evil as also a factor.
    BTW, I have witnessed mass murder. It isn’t pretty and it makes you wonder about sinful man, but it also makes you wonder if some external forces also try to push people towards things like that. Cause, let’s face it. “Why, why, why????? Why would he do this?” by Nonnie is the real question we first ask ourselves, because we can understand why someone shoots someone over money or women, but things like Sandy Hook still mystify us on a certain level and maybe there is a reason we react that way.

  249. Bob says:

    It is obvious (to most) that bad people will do bad things. They are motivated by various things ranging from mental health issues, the demonic (if you are bent to using this as a scape goat for bad behavior) and a desensitization to violent behavior from aspects of the culture here in the USA. The problem is when they do bad things they have access to tools of local mass destruction, guns.

    Protecting our innocent from these bad people seems easy, set a defense perimeter around them. The problem is how? The easy answer seems to be end easy access to weapons of local mass destruction. Will this end “bad people?” No, just look at what is going on across our border to the south (something Michael has shown great passion for).

    Basically I am in a bit of a quandary here because I find the USA a unique place in the world, a place that supports (or at least did) the basic rights of all to decide how they will live and that includes owning guns. I also find this country unique in the world because we also support the freedom to make and distribute media which glamorizes weapons of local mass destruction not just amongst our own people but the people of the world.

  250. Bob says:

    So do I support restricting access to these weapons or do I support fortressing the innocent for protection?

    As a follower of Jesus and a disciple of His word I believe this, we must defend and protect the innocent even if it causes difficulty and sacrifice in my own life! And this means I support both, defend the innocent from bad people (the scope of this is much greater than simply those who would use guns) and even if it causes difficulty and sacrifice, we must make the ownership of guns step up to a higher responsibility in both a moral and practical manner.

    However, I do not believe simply restricting access via law prohibiting the sale to all peoples is the solution.

    What would Jesus do? I believe teach people about the peace which comes from above and the penalty for choosing a path which would harm and prevent the littlest ones (the innocent) from hearing His words (and this includes more than those who would harm these innocent with guns).

    Weird rambling, I’m off to the internet mist.

  251. Scott says:

    Here’s a sobering thought, since Michael posted this thread, over 7,600 innoncent babies have had their little defenseless lives snuffed out in our country.

    Talk about “American idolatry”.

  252. Truth, Scott. And that is actually more sobering than this whole thread.

  253. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    It seems like this family was the prototype for a family that shouldn’t have been allowed to have guns. My dad was a Sheriff so he had guns in the house (not that much at all) however he never ever glorified them to us and we were never curious about them at all. see he had respect for what they could do and he didn’t even like using them in the line of duty.

  254. night all

  255. London says:

    Im curious what is the point of that comment in regards to gun violence, this famiky or anything that happened in Albuquerque this weekend Scott?
    Did you know there were ten kids in this family? Pretty sure they weren’t big proponents of abortion.

  256. Scott says:

    No need for me to try and explain it to you London.

    Like Derek, I will say good night all too.

  257. London says:

    Solomon says “Was the Dad irresponsible in first of all having all those weapons when he has children? absolutely
    Was the Dad irresponsible in going out with his son shooting all the time? Of Course, this is a 15 yeard old boy that is wet behind the ears in the ways of life.”
    Then goes on and on with more judgement about a man and child he never met.
    Did you know, according to the family’s letter released to the press by the mans brother (who served as a NM Senator) that for generations, the men in that family have served in the military and the boy wanted to be like them? Did you know the picture that has been published of the boy was him wearing his fathers fatigues? He took a picture of himself in them.
    Did you also know that where they live is a rural part of town where there’s all kinds of coyotes, snakes etc. it’s also got a reputation of some poverty and gangs. But it’s “country” out there. People have guns for all kinds of reasons. Who are you to judge that a father teaches his son to shoot. Or spends time with him.
    Did you know they also spent time together on mission trips??

    You go on to say how your dad taught you to shoot at an earlier age. Mine did too. He was also a cop and we had guns around the house all the time too.
    one of my brother and I’s favorite things to do with my dad was to go shooting. It was fun to target practice. Like you, we never once thought about using them on another person. We were taught to NEVER point a gun at another human being.
    We have no idea what that man said to his children about guns. For all we know, he taught him the exact right stuff. We have no right to judge.

  258. London says:

    LOL. Good night Scott

    BTW, Derek’s post was excellentlly written.

  259. Michael says:


    I read the letter from the boys uncle…and cried over it too.
    Maybe the saddest damn thing I’ve ever read.
    I would have posted it here but it would have been treated like a jackal treats a rabbit.

  260. Michael says:


    Thank you.

  261. covered says:

    Thank you London. I love it when you challenge irresponsible comments.

    Michael, I hope that you are well and you should know that my bride and I pray for you often. Keep up the good work, fighting the good fight. I’m ready for that cup of coffee.

  262. Michael says:


    The prayers mean more than you know.
    Much love to you and yours, my friend.

  263. Alex says:

    G, agreed. Arrogance or maybe even carelessness. I’m an FFL Dealer, I sell guns for a living, I shoot all the time. My kids WILL NOT have access to my guns until they are adults and after much training and education and only if they want to and only if they demonstrate sound mind etc.

    I already train them in respecting guns and educating them on what a gun is and what it can do and where the lines are. Guns are not for kids, unless under strict supervision at the range…and then it is currently with a bb gun and when they are much older, it will be with a .22 caliber rifle, graduating to a hunting rifle and shotgun after passing Hunter’s Safety etc…and they will not have access to those guns unless it is with me at the range or hunting and at a much older age.

    When my kids are adults, they can make their own decision as to whether or not to own guns.

    I have access to the guns in our home, so does my wife, for the purpose of personal protection. We have a plan in place in case a worst case scenario happens. It includes me confronting the threat and drawing the fire and my wife and kids exiting the house and going to a neighbors to call police.

    My kids know the drill and they respect guns as serious and not toys and not for their use…and they don’t have access to them. That, IMO, is the right way to handle things. It may not eliminate 100% the slim possibility of tragedy, but it certainly cuts down on the odds.

    I am all for legal gun ownership, even if it is an AR-15 or AK-47…but education, training, gun safety and keeping them away from kids…and making sure kids with mental/behavioral issues don’t have access to them…makes a lot of sense. I’m find with Background Checks for all, as well. The Federal Firearm’s License FBI NICS background check screens for Domestic Violence convictions, Felonies, Adjudicated Mentally Defective and other issues…though some of the folks slip through the cracks when they plea down to Disturbing the Peace or when they have mental issues but aren’t officially adjudicated.

  264. Alex says:

    Derek, I’ve got no beef with what you said, I think it’s an accurate observation…you accurately diagnose man’s depravity and tendency toward sin and evil (the devil is us metaphor I used above).

    You actually make a very good argument for why I want a gun…I expect that man will do bad things at some point and I want the chance at protecting me and my loved ones.

    A drugged up criminal or gang-banger with a gun has the bravado you describe…and as Wayne La Pierre recently said, “the best way to stop a bad guy with a gun…is a good guy with a gun”

    When we talk about “behavior changes”…I’m talking about “literal changes in brain chemistry and brain function”…which is identified and proven scientifically in the Violent Video Game studies…where “all” showed these quantifiable effects on the brain which have a direct correlation to agressive behavior, violence and de-sensitivity to violence.

    Violence in war has a similar effect, as does gang violence etc. PTSD is a reality. I think our soldiers who see combat need a lot of help when they return home to heal and make the transition back into society.

  265. Alex says:

    Believe me Derek, I know PTSD is real. My step-dad would go into night terrors screaming and yelling and looking possessed. He would beat us often as well in violent rages. I don’t know if it was the hard-core drugs he took when he was a drug dealer and smuggler, or if it was the violence of the vietnam war or a combo of the two…but I am certain there is a brain chemistry/brain function issue there…and he owns guns to this day and used to take a gun to church (not sure if he still does that).

  266. London says:

    I thought about posting it too Michael and didn’t for the same reason as you.
    I don’t even know this family at all, but somehow feel the need to defend them.

  267. Michael says:

    London…me too.

    There was a day when I would have trusted this communities response.
    That day is gone and eventually I probably will be too.

  268. Chile says:

    My Grandparents came to this country because they could not defend themselves in WWI. They owned a gun here that they only had to use once when an intruder broke into their home and my grandmother took aim!

    Owning a gun was insurance that you could keep a government in check. They’d already lost their home, land, town and way of life once.

  269. Have there been studies to show if guns and gun use change your brain chemistry? How about cell phones? or sex? You said yoga does. So if these change brain chemistry that would suggest to me that everything we do or make a habit changes us. That sort of renders all those studies useless.
    If the brain chemistry were altered that radically, I would expect more of my friends who grew up gaming to be more violent than they are. To me, the numbers don’t back up video games being anymore of an influence than anything else. Not to say they might not be, but I just see them as a verifiable cause. I believe it is far more complex than we make it out to be. There is only one solution that to me would ensure that someone would not do anything like that and that is regeneration.
    BTW, do you realize that you use science like some people use scripture? And actually like the people you condemn as to the way they use scripture. You throw it out there and dare people to knock it down. Then you would probably call them a “flat earther” sic heretic. No one usually calls you on it, because there is no one on here who knows everything about science, including me or you. There aren’t any scientists that know everything either, because it is so specialized nowadays. Do you select what science you throw on here, maybe like a Selective Scientificism? 🙂 Just an observation.
    Fo’ real night yall.

  270. aargh…*just don’t see them as a verifiable cause.

  271. Scott,
    I thought your point about abortion was quite good. In light of Alex’s comments about brain chemistry – who do you know that goes through more change of brain chemistry than pregnant women – to the point that 1.5 million of them are deranged enough to kill their unborn children.

  272. Alex says:

    Derek, yes, there are things that affect brain function and brain chemistry for good and bad. I think you might be misunderstanding my position on the issue…I am asserting “contributes to violence and tragedy” vs. “is the 100% cause”

    Again, like I stated earlier up the thread to Steve:

    Not all who have PTSD or are Paranoid Schizophrenic or have other mental health issues go postal….but most who go postal have those underlying contributing factors.

  273. Alex says:

    Derek said, “selective scientism”

    LOL, there is one Scientific Method…yet a zillion “correct” interpretations of the bible depending on who you talk to in the 9,000 to 30,000 denominations.

  274. Alex says:

    “The release today of a study by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) showing that 64 percent of local jail inmates, 56 percent of state prisoners and 45 percent of federal prisoners have symptoms of serious mental illnesses”

    “Pincus and his long-time collaborator, psychiatrist Dorothy Lewis, from New York University, came to the conclusion that it was a lethal combination of childhood abuse, neurological disturbances and psychiatric illness that led someone to murder. Pincus and Lewis reported that an astoundingly high percentage of the murderers they’d studied were victims of physical abuse and head trauma as children. In two of their studies, in fact, they found that 100% of their subjects had suffered previous head trauma, from one cause or another.”

    “Dr. Terry Kupers, a psychiatrist who specializes in forensic and correctional mental health issues, agrees. “In prison populations, it’s known that 60-80% of prisoners have had serious physical and sexual abuse prior to their crimes and incarceration,” he says. “And the prevalence of that is higher on death row than elsewhere in prisons.””

    The data is the data…

  275. Alex says:

    We live in a round world folks. MLD, it’s not flat…that is the truth.

  276. Solomon Rodriguez says:


    My dad never taught me to shoot a gun, I appreciate your viewpoint but I also disagree. Whave to look at th is objectively

  277. filbertz says:

    symptoms a diagnosis does not make.

    my, we have some experts here. perhaps they should travel to NM and assist the authorities with their jobs.

  278. Alex says:

    Filbertz, that’s what this blog is, it’s the DNA of PhxP…why are you holding your nose all of the sudden? Aren’t you one of the OPP’s? (Original PxP’ers 🙂

    Seems a bit late to lament speculation and discussing issues that are the topics of threads…

  279. filbertz says:

    no, not original, but been around the block a few laps. neither am I holding my nose or breath awaiting anything to change. instead, I’m merely weighing in that many seem to have such insight into these mysteries that perhaps they should assist the authorities with their brilliance. Isn’t that what happens on these blogs? Or do things only cut one way?

    oh, and I posted way back at #23 and have read every post on this thread…none of which have altered my sentiments. perhaps you overlooked that one.

  280. Hey phil…good to see you guys when you were here. Love hanging with you guys

  281. filbertz says:

    Hops, it was really refreshing to spend the time with you two…thanks for the “hopsitality” 😉

  282. filbertz says:

    …and I got my yearly church visit in early. 🙂

  283. Alex says:

    Fil. your #23 is a solid post…I can respect that opinion and I don’t disagree with that take that much. Yet, there are correlations to things and there are things that can be done to mitigate and sometimes eliminate certain things from happening and I don’t think it’s a fear issue as much as it is a good stewardship and wisdom issue. Just my take.

  284. But the question is….did you tithe? haha

  285. Alex says:

    LOL, that was funny

  286. filbertz says:

    yes, I only took 10% out of the plate.

  287. “We live in a round world folks. MLD, it’s not flat…that is the truth.”

    LOL – I was agreeing with you – the whole brain chemistry stuff. It’s natures way of having mothers kill their unborn for population control.
    It’s why we have to be understanding and keep abortion safe and available – so that these mothers do not go postal.

  288. Please Note says:



  289. erunner says:

    Please Note, Miss seeing you here. Hope all is well with you and yours.

  290. Please Note says:

    Thanks, e!

    I read, don’t post much.

    Blessings To You, Brother.

  291. filbertz says:

    great to see you, too.

  292. Alex, 264, thanks for the cogent response.

  293. London says:

    I miss the feature that keeps the name you used here instead of the last name used any where. 😳

  294. London says:

    This…is NOT objective “It seems like this family was the prototype for a family that shouldn’t have been allowed to have guns.”

    A working family with both a mans a dad, living in a rather large house, supporting 10 kids between them. The father who was a veteran (from a line of military men) pastor, chaplin, prison minister and currently working at the rescue mission.
    A man who from everyone in this town (so far that I’ve heard) paid his debt to society, turned to Christ, got on the right path and helped ithers recover. Took his kids on mission trips with him and helped them with things like musice lessons.
    A mom who home schooled her kids.
    An uncle who served our state as a Senator.
    That kind of family “allowed” to own guns?????

  295. Alex said “LOL, there is one Scientific Method…yet a zillion “correct” interpretations of the bible depending on who you talk to in the 9,000 to 30,000 denominations.”

    Selective Scientificism (yes, I made this word up)- The act of picking and choosing the scientific study that suits your particular argument.
    You see when I google either “no link between video games and violence” or “link between video games and violence”. I see scientific results on both sides of the argument. Hmmm…but that can’t be according to your “interpretation”.

    Look this isn’t to show, that video games could not be ” a cause” among multiple ones of problems like this. It is to show that putting faith in science isn’t all that.

    Off to work.

  296. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    London said:

    This…is NOT objective “It seems like this family was the prototype for a family that shouldn’t have been allowed to have guns.”

    A working family with both a mans a dad, living in a rather large house, supporting 10 kids between them. The father who was a veteran (from a line of military men) pastor, chaplin, prison minister and currently working at the rescue mission.
    A man who from everyone in this town (so far that I’ve heard) paid his debt to society, turned to Christ, got on the right path and helped ithers recover. Took his kids on mission trips with him and helped them with things like musice lessons.
    A mom who home schooled her kids.
    An uncle who served our state as a Senator.
    That kind of family “allowed” to own guns?????”

    If the man was an ex felon then in my understanding and I could be wrong, he had no legal right to own the guns. I served in the Army for 8 years and I do not feel the need to own a gun let alone expose my children to them where they have access to them. Again there was irresponsibility there and if we as the Church are not allowed to question things in this story then I’m afraid we will add to the tragedy by refusing to learn from this. I feel that this family is getting a pass simply because they are Christian, if they were unbelievers I have a feeling people here would be railing against the family for being irresponsible. To just swipe this aside as Demonic possession is naive at best and foolish at worst. From the story it appears that there were contributing factors. This doesn’t make the parents bad parents but maybe they were irresponsible in what they allowed their son to do as far as going shooting all the time and indulging in violent video games. All the mission trips in the world do not absolve us from our first ministry which is at home. If we as the Church cannot use this as a cautionary tale to not be obssessed with the gun culture which actually promotes a culture of machismo and false bravado, then we will be worse for it. I choose to learn from this and to share with others my concerns. I will not swipe this under the rug as simple demonic posssession or influence altho every evil act at it’s root is of the devil.

    Yes this man and his family may have served in the military that still does not mean that they should glorify it to their impressionable son. In fact, they should actually be sober about their experiences in the Armed Forces letting their son know the reality of it and how dangerous and brutal the military can be. In my experience at the three Institutional churches that I have attended, Four Sqaure, Regency and Calvary Chapel I have found a very unhealthy worship of the military, glorification of owning weapons and false machismo among many of the Men there. This seems to be prevalent in the evangelical culture. If they live in a rural area I can understand the need for maybe a rifle but to have all the weapons that they did is excessive IMHO.

  297. Alex says:

    Derek, show me the recent study that shows there is no affect on brain function/brain chemistry from prolonged playing of violent video games. I can’t find any. Can you help me out with that?

    You are confusing issues and building a strawman. I cited verifiable repeatable testable studies that prove as fact a change in brain chemistry/brain function among a Group of humans where 100% showed the physiological changes as evidenced by MRI’s etc.

    Show me the study that did the same thing…and had different results. That’s how science works. I can’t find the study you seem to say exists anywhere….

  298. London says:

    It is clear we will never agree on this.
    Neither of us have any idea how often the dad took the kid shooting, yet you use words like “all the time” “glorified” etc. words you use from your made up judgements of a situation you do not know anything about.
    You also have no idea if this family “glorified” military service yet you say they “should not have” done so. What are you basing your insight on? Surely not any first hand knowledge.
    You are very far from being objective.

  299. Alex says:

    I agree London. The only hard evidence we have to pin some “contribution” (not 100% responsible, but a factor to consider) is the “Violent Video Game addiction” that was referenced in the article…and the fact that it is not normal sane behavior to kill ones family.

    While I suspect other issues in that home…the only solid info we have that seems to be a contributing factor is the violent video games and the fact the kid had access to the guns and that he showed signs of difficulty with regards to mental health.

  300. Em says:

    there is no getting around the fact that moms and dads take a bow when a child does well and are castigated when a child does bad – it goes with the territory … that said, do we honestly think that the environment outside of house isn’t just as culpable? young children are much less innocent than they are vulnerable
    God keep the grieving family and bring something beautiful for His kingdom from this

  301. London says:

    No Alex, as much as I hate violent video games, there are perhaps millions of kids that play them and who knows how many are addicts. The reports of his “excitement” about the games while being questions is not “hard” evidence of anything.
    We don’t know how many hours he spent playing, if he was addicted or anything else. For all we know, the kid only saw the games once and was able to talk about them in questioning because he had a psychotic break or was in shock or denial about what he’d done.
    We know nothing except this could have been anyone’s family and the surviving members need prayer and not judgement.

  302. Solomon Rodriguez says:


    Nonetheless we need to be willing to learn from this and not just sweep it under the rug of oversimplification. Of course most of my statements are speculation and opinion, we all have them however when I said “objective” I meant in be willing to question things and not just give this story a pass because the family were Christians

  303. Last post on this thread.
    Alex, you show me the studies that show that sex doesn’t affect brain chemistry, or kids running around in the woods playing pirate doesn’t change brain chemistry, or maybe that going out and shooting guns doesn’t change brain chemistry.
    You are focusing on one thing like a laser, but there is a lot that affects us in this world, not disputing that. Everyone on here knows that “a lot of things change us”, but to say that video games are the thing cause ” I have my scientific study to show it” is pointless without a holistic approach that takes more into account, including things you want to say are just unexplained by science right now.

  304. Tom & Jerry cartoons are pretty violent.- and I won’t even mention the Roadrunner!

  305. Alex says:

    Derek, again, I’m simply calling attention to the “fact” that prolonged exposure to violent video games causes an increase in aggressiveness and violence and insensitivity to violence and was a “factor” in this situation, not the root cause.

    Other things are “good” to do to help overall “good” brain function and decrease those tendencies like sex, good diet, exercise, relaxation and medicine that helps regulate brain chemistry and fixes chemical imbalances etc.

    The young man is still responsible for his actions and will be brought to justice, I’m sure…though I suspect abuse in the home, just a hunch.

  306. a leading neuroscientist (one for whom i have a high regard) maintains that as long as one obeys the traffic laws on the way to committing a crime, they know enough about right and wrong to be culpable for what they do when they commit the crime

    Roadrunner affected MY brain – can’t hear the name with an audible going off in my head … beep beep … (in my head it sounds like meep meep for some reason) … maybe that’s because i was always in the kitchen fixing breakfast while dad and son observed their Saturday morning religious obligation

  307. with? nope, i think that should have been “without” and audible…..

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