Posts Tagged ‘blind hymn writer’

Can Anders Behring Breivik be forgiven?

July 28, 2011

He has been described as a “Christian Fundamentalist” but this young man is no follower of the Lord Jesus Christ. (1John3v7-12) In the aftermath of last week’s horrific events, journalists and others are analysing his motives, background, up-bringing and his psychological make-up – but I wonder will anyone tell him that he needs to repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation?

“Why should he get the chance to get right with God?” Many may say. “And how can God ever forgive someone for such a heinous and despicable crime?”

Today I pray for the parents and loved ones of all those (mostly young) people who were killed. As a mother myself, I cannot even begin to imagine the agony that they are going through. I pray also, that those who have been injured will recover successfully and I also pray that no other person out there with a mindset like Breivik’s will adopt his techniques and do the horrific things that he has done.

But today I find that I must also pray for Anders Behring Breivik himself, as he is presently in solitary confinement and thankfully has not been given the opportunity to unleash his rhetoric to the world. I pray that he will somehow come to see the depravity and depths of evil to which he has sunk and that when he is confronted with this, as a broken man he will truly repent and put his trust in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Few have ever sunk to the depths of depravity that this man has sunk to, yet it is a fact that we all have sinned at some time or other. (Rom. 3v23)

Jesus died for your sins, for my sins – and yes, for the sins of Anders Behring Breivik.. “And he is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” (1John 2v2)

And so, as he sits alone in that cell, reflecting on these things, I pray that the Lord will speak to the heart of Breivik, resulting in his brokenness, repentance and salvation. Yes, he will have to take the consequences for what he has done, for we reap what we sow. But can Breivik truly be forgiven by God? The answer is – yes, it is possible. God’s message to Breivik tonight is: “For så har Gud elsket verden at han gav sin Sønn, den enbårne, forat hver den som tror på ham, ikke skal fortapes, men ha evig liv;” (John 3v16 in Norwegian)

“And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. He that saith he abideth in him, ought himself also to walk , even as he walked.” (1John 1v3-6)

I thank God that whether our sins have been small or great in the eyes of the world, He can perform that miracle in our lives, whereby in His strength we can keep His commandments. And I thank God for His great forgiveness and for the strength that He gives to enable us to “walk, even as He walked.”

Tonight I also reflect on another Norwegian – Matias Orheim (1884 -1958), who left an outstanding legacy of poems, music and spiritual songs. A farmer’s son, he came to know the Lord in 1900 and although he was blind, Matias was a prolific writer and composer; his wife died just a few hours after him. In his hymn: “I found my God in Early Years,” which is translated from Norwegian, Matias Orheim describes throughout his great joy in his salvation. This is the first verse…

“I found my God in early years,

He wept away my sins, my tears.

It was my best decision.

He filled my life with love and awe,

And I in light God’s Kingdom saw,

How wonderful a vision!”

My prayer today is that young (and older) people in Norway and throughout this sin-stricken world would accept the gift of spiritual vision that was given to the physically blind Matias Orheim. Oh, that they would find the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, who loved each one of them and gave Himself for them.

Link to this hymn: