John Wayne Gacy. Timothy McVeigh. Jeffrey Dahmer. Ted Bundy. They had a number of common traits. All of them were men. All of them were murderers. All of them were found guilty. All of them have names that will live in infamy.
But they share something else in common…
The mere mention of these names can elicit strong emotions due to the horrible and ghastly crimes they committed against helpless and unsuspecting victims, many of whom were women and children. From Gacy’s serial killings to McVeigh’s bombing in Oklahoma City to Dahmer’s disgusting cannibalism to Bundy’s horrific and fiendish raping, the ghoulish activity of these men captured headlines for months on end and caused America to ask deep questions about life and evil. In their homicidal wake, they left at least 248 men, women, and children dead, with thousands more personally and tragically impacted.
While reading through the accounts of their unchecked violence, it’s easy for many of us to lump these men in with the likes of Adolf Hitler, Mao Ze-Dong, Joseph Stalin, and Osama bin Laden. It’s easy for us to harbor bitterness, hatred, and a desire for revenge in our hearts. It’s also easy for us to forget that these men – these very ungodly killers – were loved by Jesus so much that He willingly gave His life for them.
You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:6-8)
Gacy. McVeigh. Dahmer. Bundy. These men certainly weren’t righteous, and most of us would use much harsher labels than that of “sinners” to describe them. But Jesus’ love knows no bounds. This is the scope of Jesus’ compassion, mercy, and grace.
What radical love! The best of Heaven would die for the worst of Earth.
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(Resource cataloged by David R Smith)