This is the last article in a three part series on what the Bible says about rape. I chose to go into depth because my consistent work with youth over the years has taught me that many feel the church is too silent on these issues of sexual sins that happen in secret. Yet, these acts can have the most damaging effects on people! So we must speak about them if people are to ever heal and live healthy happy lives.
The first article, using mainly the Old Testament, we established that God hates the act of rape. Last week, we focused on what God would say to the innocent victim who has been violated in such a horrific way and how He can bring supernatural peace even in the darkest of times. This week, we want to address what Jesus says to the rapist in the Word of God.
I am not going to quote specific verses as much as summarize the character of Christ and what I believe, based on the Bible, He would say. I imagine it would go something like this:
You have lustful thoughts that consume you – so much so that you feel you have the right to abuse someone else for your pleasure. I can tell you that the thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. But I, Jesus Christ, have come to give you abundant life. (John 10:10). If you allow yourself to listen and succumb to the voices in your mind telling you to hurt someone else to get what you want, that voice is NOT MINE. It is the voice of the enemy – and if you allow him that power to lead you to do such horrific acts, it will crush you too! I have come to give you peace, not peace as the world gives – no, my peace is present even in the darkest days. But, you will never feel that if you walk in obedience to the prince of darkness. You say you can’t help it. That is okay. If you surrender and ask me to come into your life and take over your thoughts, I will give you a gift. His name is Sprit and He will be a counselor who will help you along the way. He will be a Helper. He will give you some gifts – one of which will be self-control to help you say no to the acts which destroy you and those around you. Listen to me. I created you and this thing you think will make you happy is so very temporary. My joy is eternal. Trust me and stop allowing yourself to be used by Satan to destroy yourself and that beautiful girl (or boy) I created. Love others as you love yourself. Treat others the way you would want to be treated. You will reap what you sow so think carefully before you act!
Now if this message speaks to you and you find yourself wanting to change but feeling like the damage is done and God could never accept you now, let me tell you a story that really illustrates the love of God to me. I am going to share it in modern terms but you can read the original story in Matthew 20:1-16).
Imagine a farmer. There are kraals to be swept and cleaned. There are cows to be milked. There are eggs to be collected. There is a yard to be raked. You get the drift! The work is plentiful and laborious! So, he drives to Puma Petrol Station. Surely there will be a group of guys there needing work. The time is 7:30 in the morning. 5 guys run to his window seeking employment. He negotiates pay and agrees on P100 for the day. The men arrive at the farm and begin what will be a long hard day’s labor. Around 10:30 a.m., the farmer decides to go hire more men. Still again at 1:30 pm and 4:30 pm. And finally again at 6:00 pm.
Around 7:00, as the sun sets, the farmer gathers the workers. As he hands out P100 to the guys who started working only an hour ago, the guys who started work at 7:30 a.m. get excited! Whoo hoo! The boss saw how hard we worked and now he is increasing the pay. To their dismay however, he paid EVERYONE P100! Grumbling and complaining, they argued with him! How can you pay this guy who worked 1 hour the same as us who toiled for almost 12 hours? That isn’t fair!
(Matthew 20:13-15) He replied, “Friend, I am not being unfair to you. Didn’t you agree to work for P100? Take your pay. If I want to be generous with my money, don’t I have that right? Or are you jealous because I am such a nice person?”
Here is what I want you to see in this story. You can have “good people” who deserve God’s love and forgiveness and then you have those ones who did NOTHING to deserve it all their lives! Yet, even then, God can still choose to be merciful, giving and generous with his love and grace. The same eternal life and spirit filled life He promises the “hard working morally upstanding Christian” He can decide to give to you, despite the fact that you may not deserve it.
To you, the sinner, you have a choice. Choose life or choose death. The choice is yours. If you choose life, 1 John 1:19 says if you will CONFESS your sin and REPENT that he is faithful and He will forgive you and purify you from all unrighteousness. He is just so generous and nice like that! What a wonderful loving Savior who wants to pull you out of darkness and into the Kingdom of Light!
Ashley Thaba is a popular author, motivational speaker and media personality. You can watch her hit Marriage TV show at www.ashleythaba.com. View some of her work on her YouTube channel: Ashley Thaba. Buy two of her books, Dive In and Conquering the Giants, on her website. E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Facebook at: Talking with the Thabas