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Let All Who Think They (or Their Loved Ones) Stand, Take Heed of the Story of the Jake Evans…

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If you're not familiar with the recent tragedy involving Jake Evans, a 17-year old, homeschooled young man who shot his mom and younger sister, read/watch/listen to this:

Being involved in prison ministry, I frequently scan the headlines for the latest crimes and convictions.  I was working late one night when I read about Jake's crime and listened to his chilling confession for the

 first time. 

Alex Harris, co-author with his brother Brett of Do Hard Things–both of whom were homeschooled with their older brother, Joshua Harris, author of several books, including Dug Down Deep and Why I Kissed Dating Goodbye—wrote about the similar tragedy of David Ludwig, a homeschooled young man who shot his girlfriend’s parents.  Alex found a couple of blog posts by David and his girlfriend where both had expressed sincere, unprovoked love for God and faith in the gospel.  Then, Alex observed:


Shocking words for two teens facing the possibility of execution or life behind bars for murder? How about for two young, homeschooled teens from Christian families?  Not quite so shocking, is it?  But which are they?  They’re both.  And that is what’s so important for us to realize…as Christians.  Being homeschooled did not prevent this tragedy; growing up in a Christian environment did not prevent this tragedy; bearing many signs of apparent faith and an understanding of the Gospel did not prevent this tragedy; these are harsh, but necessary truths that demand humility.  Hard to swallow as it is, what happened in Lititz, Pennsylvania, is not an exception, it’s fallen man’s default.  We should all be asking ourselves the question: What is it that separates me from a David Ludwig or a Kara Borden?  And we should all be answering — in the words of Protestant Reformer, John Bradford — “There, but for the grace of God, go I.” 

“No man’s really any good till he knows how bad he is, or might be; till he’s realized exactly how [little] right he has to all this snobbery, and sneering, and talking about ‘criminals,’ as if they were apes in a forest ten thousand miles away; till he’s got rid of all the dirty self-deception of talking about low types and deficient skulls; till he’s squeezed out of his soul the last drop of the oil of the Pharisees…”— G.K. Chesterton, The Secret of Father Brown

The Times of London once asked readers for comments on what was wrong with the world. British author, G. K. Chesterton responded simply: “Dear Sir, I am.”  Not many of us have the same clarity that Chesterton had.  Just days after Hurricane Katrina had ravaged the Gulf Coast, politicians and pundits were distributing more blame than aid.  It’s so easy to see the faults of others, but so difficult to see our own. In the words of Cassius in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, “the fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars but in ourselves.”

Jesus is a good example of character, but He’s also much more than that. He is the solution to flawed people like corrupt Dartmouth alums, looters, [teenage murderers,] and me.  It’s so easy to focus on the defects of others and ignore my own.  But I need saving as much as they do.  Jesus’ message of redemption is simple.  People are imperfect, and there are consequences for our actions.  He gave His life for our sin so that we wouldn’t have to bear the penalty of the law; so we could see love.  The problem is me; the solution is God’s love: Jesus on the cross, for us.

(Excerpted from:


Jay Adams encouraging commentary regarding 1 Corinthians 10:12-13 continues to change my life.  But as much as the passage offers encouragement, the verses also provide a stern warning to Christians.  That there isn't any temptation overtaken us that isn't common to man also means we have no excuse for sin.  The same judgment which resulted in the death of thousands in the wilderness awaits those who, while claiming the name of Christ, continue in unrepentant sin, living as if there is no God.  The most terrifying verses in all of Scripture are found in Matthew 7:21-23, which state that there will be many in hell who sincerely believed they were going to heaven.  Parents, do you really know your children?  Do we really know ourselves?  Dear reader, let each one of us examine ourselves to see whether or not we are really in the faith (2 Corinthians 13:5).  As Alex Harris wrote, “I need saving as much as they do….He gave His life for our sin so that we wouldn’t have to bear the penalty of the law; so we could see love. The problem is me; the solution is God’s love: Jesus on the cross, for us.”

Posted on January 27, 2012