Policing the Inner

Policing the Inner

The recent spate of crime last week has once again sparked concern across the nation and in particular New Providence. Additionally, it has raised many questions as to what can be done. How can this matter be addressed? Tourism is already being affected, and this is likely to trickle down to other areas. A stemming of lawlessness and crime needs to happen. Unarguably, there is a need to address this major wave of lawlessness as it affects all of us- rich and poor, black and white, Bahamians and non-Bahamians, Christians and unbelievers. However, could it be that our approach is a bit limited in that we continue to look at the results and then react? I wish to proffer the following thoughts for consideration.

Policing the Heart
Policing for the most part would seem to address the results and, in some instances, prevent crime as arresting someone with a loaded gun intent on robbing a bank and/or inflicting harm. But there is a bigger and deeper problem that is hard for any law enforcement agency to address that is the policing of the heart. The Bible says, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; Who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9, NKJV). I may smile with you, shake your hand, or even embrace you all in an effort to cover my motives. Trust me, it is hard for the best trained from Scotland Yard or the FBI to detect such. Only Christ and His indwelling power through the Holy Spirit can discern and change one’s motive to do good where it intended to do wrong. In the same book of Jeremiah is stated, “I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind” (Jeremiah 17:10, NKJV).
So what is the point? Am I advocating that we get rid of the policing? Certainly no! Get rid of the personnel? Absolutely No! Then what?

Recognize an Alternative Approach
The involvement of the church is critical. When godly men and women are about sharing and modeling the gospel, lives are changed for good. Furthermore, homes are strengthened, discipline is restored and responsibility is assumed. These changes that are real make the job of our law enforcement agencies less frustrating and more manageable. By extension, the society is a safer place. Yes, I am naïve to believe that persons lifting up Christ in words and example on the job, in their homes, on the streets, in the classroom, and in business transaction will have a positive impact on our nation. Don’t you think it is about time that we consider the relevance of Christ and His law as a viable approach in addressing the scourge of lawlessness? Of course this is not to say that other strategies should not be considered. They ought but not to exclude this one.
It should be noted that I am not calling for a legislation of spiritual living as that is contrary to God’s will. However, I am appealing for preachers to be preachers uplifting God’s word in its purity and allowing it to have free course. We cannot expect the nation to be law-abiding when we teach that God’s law is abolished because we are under grace. Grace does not negate or cancel out the purpose of the law. I call upon Christians to be Christians not just on weekends but daily- especially in our homes and on the job. I call upon churches to become more deliberate in outreach and involvement in the community. There is a sense of hopelessness looming all around. However, the church can help to restore hope; for people all around want to “feel our presence” and want to know that we care. I guess it is best explained by the old adage, “I would rather see a sermon than hear one.”