Thursday, March 19, 2009
The sin of innocent blood
1 “If anyone is found slain, lying in the field in the land which the LORD your God is giving you to possess, and it is not known who killed him, 2 then your elders and your judges shall go out and measure the distance from the slain man to the surrounding cities. 3 And it shall be that the elders of the city nearest to the slain man will take a heifer which has not been worked and which has not pulled with a yoke. 4 The elders of that city shall bring the heifer down to a valley with flowing water, which is neither plowed nor sown, and they shall break the heifer’s neck there in the valley. 5 Then the priests, the sons of Levi, shall come near, for the LORD your God has chosen them to minister to Him and to bless in the name of the LORD; by their word every controversy and every assault shall be settled. 6 And all the elders of that city nearest to the slain man shall wash their hands over the heifer whose neck was broken in the valley. 7 Then they shall answer and say, ‘Our hands have not shed this blood, nor have our eyes seen it. 8 Provide atonement, O LORD, for Your people Israel, whom You have redeemed, and do not lay innocent blood to the charge of Your people Israel.’ And atonement shall be provided on their behalf for the blood. 9 So you shall put away the guilt of innocent blood from among you when you do what is right in the sight of the LORD. (Deuteronomy 21:1-9).
This morning I was wakened with the weight of innocent blood upon my thoughts. When I was in Lajamanu, the Old People would say from time-to-time that country is sick. I went with them to a location where there are some caves. One Old Man sat on a rock and lamented for an extended period. With tears in his eyes, he cried out to the surrounding area. When I asked for a translation I was told that he was lamenting the disappearance of all the animals, the decline in the fertility of the area, and the lack of people living in the area. Apparently the caves were a place that housed a large number of Warlpiri people. I looked around, and the desert seemed empty, and I could not imagine how anyone could survive in that area. I was then told, "It looks empty because there are no people here. The country is sick, because there are no people to care for it. Because the country is sick, the animals have gone away." The Warlpiri Old People understand the relationship between the moral health of a people and the health of the land that they occupy.
This is a Biblical Christian perspective. From a Biblical perspective, pollution is not first something that we do to the earth, it is first of all the outcome of how we live our lives in the light of God's Law. As far as God is concerned, the greatest pollutant of the earth is the shedding of innocent blood. If innocent blood is not atoned for by the leaders of a community, God will hold the whole community liable. If the blood of those who commit the sin of shedding innocent blood is not shed, then God will shed the blood of the whole community, and the land itself will spew/vomit the inhabitants out of the area. It is a serious thing for a community to have the guilt of innocent blood among them.
Regularly, I wake with the sound of innocent blood crying out for vengeance. Just on 100,000 babies are murdered every year in Australia. They have not been tried, and they have not committed any crime worthy of capital punishment, yet these babies are salted and have their skins blistered off their bodies, have their heads crushed between metal tongs, are cut into smaller pieces whilst still alive; they are decapitated and mutilated, then discarded for no other reason than that they are an inconvenience to the career plans of some woman, or are an embarrassment to some man or parent of the mother. This barbaric, evil, wicked practice pollutes our land, and the land is not atoned for. The land is sick, and becomes sicker by the day. The land is wretching, and will continue to wretch, expelling those who are tainted by the smell of innocent blood (either because they have submitted to abortion, performed an abortion, or failed to speak out against abortion).
This morning I write against the practice of shedding innocent blood. This morning I confess the sin of shed innocent blood, and plead with the Triune God to grant us the gift of repentance, and show us the Eternal Heifer, Jesus Christ, who is the only hope of atonement for our horrendous sins.