Pity for an evil person

I’ve had trouble knowing what to write about. I’ve tried several times, but nothing really seems to stick. My mind has been elsewhere a lot this week which is why the lack of posts have developed. Hoping next week goes better with that. Thankfully I have found something on my heart to write about for you all today.

I read a facebook conversation today. It was over an article called “Understanding Christopher Dorner”. Now I don’t agree with the article in question for the simple fact that it essentially tries to justify the evil acts of a murderer. However, the conversation that developed from this article got me thinking. It was really one simple phrase from the conversation. “How you can feel bad for an evil person is beyond me.” That phrase has echoed in my mind. It is a question we all ask ourselves.

Before I begin I want to make something very clear. I do not condone the actions of Christopher Dorner. He was a murderer who killed innocent people. He deserved justice for his crimes. What he did was profoundly wrong. I would never dream of justifying his actions. Actions require consequences.

However, the question of how I could feel sorry for an evil person is very different. I can believe in the need for justice for evil, but still pity the one who performs evil. I do pity those who do evil. I pity Christopher Dorter. I pity him for his twisted views in believing that murdering innocent people was the only option he seemed to have. I pity him for believing choosing evil was the best option. I pity him because there is really only one thing keeping me from being just like him. I found hope when he did not.

Christianity could use a little more pity for those enslaved to evil. We look at those who perform evil actions and often want to just holding them up to the responsibility for their actions. We want to exact punishment on them for their evil. It is true evil must be punished. It is true there must be consequences for doing wrong, but I think we forget the need for a secondary response. Why don’t we mourn for those enslaved to sin anymore?

Where are the tears for the souls lost to the enemy? We shed tears for the victims of those souls, but we never seem to mourn the ones who were enslaved into their own madness. This guy had to have some seriously messed up thoughts to do what he did. He was incredibly disturbed. Does that justify his actions? Absolutely not, but it does make me pity him.

What is keeping us from being like Christopher? What is keeping you and me from going off the deep end and doing evil? Have we even refrained from doing evil in our lives thus far? I know I haven’t. I’ve been a liar, murderer of my angry thoughts, filled with lust in my heart, manipulated others, among other things. I’ve done some evil things. You may respond, “But what Christopher did was far worse.” It’s true that Christopher’s evil actions had a more lasting and devastating effect on his victims, but I wish that he never did it in the first place. I wish that he had seen a different way to go about things. I wish that he had seen hope rather than whatever it was that pushed him further towards murdering others. Why? Because people who are now dead might still be alive. So yes, I will pity a man who does evil. I will pity him because he is incapable of seeing how destructive his evil has become. I will mourn for him because I know he could have made a better choice. I will mourn for him because I see version of myself without God’s grace in him.

I will be thankful for justice, but I will have a heart broken for the lost. Man who do evil are part of the lost.


One response to “Pity for an evil person

  1. Your point is well taken. I also believe that justice is necessary for acts of evil, but Grace is something freely given to all from God, and who are we to think that anyone is undeserving of Grace. We should not judge someone (spiritually) because they sin differently than us. No one will know what was in this mans heart between him and God, but we know he did acts of evil here on earth. For his acts of evil he deserved to face justice in our mortal courts. As for his soul, only God knows that one. For it is by faith that we are saved through Grace, and not by our works.

    Thank you for your post!

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