I have been silent about this, waiting for more facts to emerge in regard to the shooter and I find myself puzzled by many things.
Initially we heard and read that Omar Mateen was an Islamic extremist and terrorist for ISIS that he had been investigated by the FBI in the past. As more facts came out, we learned that he had been going to this particular bar (Pulse) for quite awhile. An ex-wife has said he was gay. His current wife said he had homosexual tendencies. Some of the regular bar patrons said Omar had been patronizing Pulse for a long time, maybe as much as 3 years, that he would drink to excess and that he could be found on gay dating and hook up apps. And this is what confuses at first, but really explains it all in the end.
What kind of Muslim does these things? A bad Muslim. This guy was gay and he liked to drink. He kept a wife and family as a "beard" and trolled for boyfriends by night. His entire life was a contradiction to what he was supposed to be by faith.
It is a testimony to what an extreme religion can do to a man living in the closet that is unable to process who he is with what his faith demands.
I find myself wondering if this man was ever introduced to Christ, if he would have done any of these things. Christianity has been described by some as extreme. Christ followers have been called haters. I ask you, has a Christian of any stripe ever done anything like this in our society?
There has been much vitriol in the gay community and the Church over the morality of alternative sexualities, but there has not been any bloodshed like this. I hope and pray that it never happens. We need dialogue and we need to understand that if people reject Jesus, it is their choice. Ultimately God will judge us all. It is not for anyone to take justice into their own hands and punish. As God says, "vengeance is Mine. I shall repay". I know some of us just want to be about our Father's business. We need to remember, it's His business and not ours.
What Omar did was the result of a very confused mind. The contradictions between his faith and his desire were more than he could handle and apparently the ISIS leadership took advantage of this and offered him a one way ticket to paradise if he would do this thing.
Jesus could have given Omar that and a way to balance the apparent contradictions between who he was and what faith in the One True God demands. The way of love, grace and peace could have made Omar a true child of God. No suicide mission with death and mayhem of the many would have been required.
The whole thing is an unfortunate mess and I do not try to diminish the enormity of his crimes by saying he was confused, but all he really needed was Jesus. It would have fixed everything.
Gun control would not have stopped this.
Banning homosexual behavior would not have stopped this.
Banning Islam would not have stopped this.
Submitting to Jesus would have changed everything for Omar and saved all the lives lost at Pulse.
Islamic immigrants and LGBT people need the opportunity to hear about Jesus free of judgement, in the way of love and grace.
Is anyone really doing this? Please tell me. I want to know.