After last Friday night's massacre at a mid-night premier of Batman, people are once again asking hard questions. How could a human being do such a thing? Two millennia ago, Jeremiah described the human hearts as “deceitful above all things and desperately sick” (Jer. 17:9). If you read no other book but the Bible, you’d know that human beings are capable of unspeakably terrible things.
Thirty years ago, Scott Peck challenged the world of psychology when he wrote “People of the Lie”—a book about demonic influences on patients. His premise: 'normal' psychological disorders can't explain some horrific behaviors. When he began his research on the cause of “evil,” he didn't even believe in the devil. But in the end he did. Of course, we didn't need Scott Peck to tell us that!
What made a 24 year old graduate student open fire in a crowded theater? Though normal psychology is hard-pressed to find an answer, there will likely be the discovering of a new “disorder.” But we know what is behind such evil: Satan. It appears that Paul's prophecy of increased violence and lawlessness is being realized as the demonic realm is being loosed across the earth (2 Thess. 2:3-8). Currently, the Holy Spirit is restraining it, but when He leaves (2 Thess. 2:7), all hell will break loose. And the bad news is that the destruction by one demonized man will pale in comparison.