Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Who’s Hurting our Children More, the Terrorists or the Pop Stars?

Last night’s terrorist attack at the concert in Manchester was evil. This terrorist bombing is resulting in many family members and friends grieving over the loss of loved ones.  Others may lose limbs and have to deal with serious injuries the rest of their lives. In addition to the evil inherent in all terrorist attacks, the attack at the concert in Manchester had an extra element of darkness:  it targeted a venue which was full of children and young people and their families. The devil seems to love to hurt children.

So let’s get some things clear:

Nothing at the concert in any way justified this evil attack.

The terrorist was entirely wrong.

We should mourn with those who mourn and pray for God’s comfort for all who are hurting.

Nothing I am going to say next changes any of these truths at all.

Now, for the hard part.  As evil as terrorists are, I’m not convinced that they are doing more harm to young people than pop stars like Ariana Grande are. Yesterday, I did not know who Ariana was except for perhaps a vague recognition of her name as a young pop star mentioned in news headlines. So I spent just a few minutes researching her on the internet.  What I found broke my heart.

I had no idea how massively popular she is.  She has several YouTube videos with just shy of a billion views apiece. She is one of a whole set of young pop stars with empty lives and empty lyrics who are leading our youth astray. In what ways?

Her videos, like those of her peers and previous pop stars, are highly sexualized.  Why in the world would any sane parent want their daughter (or son) to watch this stuff?  We imitate those we admire.  God designed us that way.  If we teach our children to admire Christ and courageous believers who love sacrificially, they will imitate these shining examples.  If we leave them to admire today’s pop stars, they will later be reaping the consequences of sexual immorality, empty lives, drug addiction, and a desire for the praise and attention of people which leads to deadly pride if they get it and to debilitating depression if they don’t.

Then there’s the well-publicized fact that Ariana dumped Christianity (seems unlikely she was ever a true believer) because Bible believing Christians don’t support, affirm, and celebrate her older brother’s homosexual lifestyle. It’s not merely that this promotes homosexuality.  It is her attitude that if God through His Word says something we don’t like, we should ignore and reject it.

My goal is not to personally attack Ariana.  I feel sorry for her.  She is on a path which predictably leads to substance abuse, depression, and eventually death, followed by God’s judgment.  I sincerely hope she repents.

Our youth are growing up in a scary world of bombs at concerts and vehicles turned into weapons.  They need the love of Christ to overcome such hate.  They need God-given courage to shine the light in this darkness.  They won’t find these things at a sugary sexualized pop concert.

A Prayer:  O Lord, you saw the terrible terrorist attack last night which brought death and destruction.  Please comfort all who are mourning.  Be close to the families who lost loved ones.  Please be with youth who lost their friends.  Lord, help heal those in the hospitals.  Pour out your grace and mercy.

Heavenly Father, You also see how many millions of youth are being led onto a path that leads to death and destruction by the pop stars and the culture they are captives of.  Please set our young people free.  Open their eyes to see Jesus.  Send a powerful revival among the young people.  Set them free from the filth that floods the internet and the airwaves.  Show them Your Way which leads to life.  Forgive them for their sins.  Have mercy on them and rescue them.

In Jesus Name. Amen.

Hebrews 13:16 And do not forget to do good and to share with others . . .

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