Two men sat beside each other in church: one was a member and the other was a visitor.  The member then began to question the visitor:

“Are you a Christian?”  “Yes.”
“Protestant or Baptist?”  “Baptist.”
“Evangelical or fundamental?”  “Fundamental.”
“Fellowship or independent?”  “Independent.”
“Local church or invisible church?”  “Local.”
“Sprinkling or immersion?”  “Immerse.”
“Church membership or adherent?  “Member.”
“Hymns or rock gospel?”  “Hymns.”
“Deacons or deaconesses?”  “Deacons.”
“Tithing or freewill giving?  “Tithe.”
“Short hair or long hair?” “Short.”
“Eternal security or lose salvation?”  “Secure.”
“King James Version or New King James?”  “KJV.”
“Jesus’s words printed in black or in red?”  “Red .”

…“Red?  You heretic!”  And with that the member asking the questions ceased to smile, turned away, and refused to speak any further with the visitor.

Last Sunday morning, right in the middle of the 11:00 service at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas, a man walked into the small Southern Baptist congregation of about 50 people, located in the little town of 400, and murdered around half of the worshipers (26), wounding the other half.  And what was the reason 26-year-old Devin Kelley committed such a massacre?  It had nothing to do with theology and everything to do with abuse.  This is because by far the number one reason for church shootings is domestic violence, in particular, the man abusing the woman.  The scenario goes like this:  At home, the women is abused by the man (initially she doesn’t say anything to anyone, hoping things will get better, and  if a religious woman, she is even less likely to inform another, believing that in time through prayer the man will change.)  Finally, the abuse reaches the stage where the woman must do something, so she contacts the church (now the pastor and congregation are involved).  Ultimately, with the church’s help, the woman leaves the man. Then she meets someone else at worship (and her family of church goers heap scorn on the abuser and praise on the new beau).  In the meantime, the man is seething as he blames the woman and the church for being alone.  Ultimately, that anger turns into a murderous rage with the entire congregation his target. So it was with the man who just committed the greatest church mass murder in U.S. history – he is a textbook case of the above. (By the way, this wasn’t the only such shooting of its  kind last Sunday.  In Fresno, California, a man under a domestic violence restraining order, shot his ex-wife and her new boyfriend as they walked out of church.)   And even worse, this kind of thing happens more often in Baptist churches than in any other denomination – with Baptist congregations suffering 345 of these deadly incidents since the year 2,000.  Maybe this is why  Jesus said to his disciples in Luke 22:35-36 regarding self defense – take out your wallet and buy a sword.

The bottom line?  It has been said, “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.”  But churches are finding just the opposite, “Hell hath no fury like a man scorned.”