Here's an appalling news story.
A man accused of raping and sexually assaulting a series of elderly people over a 17-year period appeared in court for the first time today.
Delroy Grant, the alleged "night stalker" serial rapist, was charged with a series of sex attacks and burglaries and was remanded in police custody after a brief hearing at Greenwich magistrates court.
The 52-year-old father from Brockley, south-east London, faces 22 charges including five rapes, six indecent assaults and 11 burglaries since 1992.http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2009/nov/16/night-stalker-suspect-charges?CMP=AFCYAH
As is usual in these cases the accused's neighbours say they are shocked, that he was a lovely person, etc. He's a dedicated and committed Jehova's Witness, they say. “He was cool. He takes care of his wife and children.”
I don't normally pay attention to these horrendous cases, since I don't need to know about other peoples' tragedies and misfortunes. The thing that got me thinking, though, was the Witnesses aspect.
Yesterday a couple of them came round my neighbourhood, and of course knocked on my door. I was in the middle of something, but opened the door anyway. A young guy was doing the knocking, with an older man, presumably his mentor or trainer, standing a pace behind.
I said I was busy, so they just gave me a leaflet. Scanning it, I wondered what kind of people respond to this stuff.
Would You Like To Know The Truth?
Er . . . OK. I'm your man. I'm obsessed with The Truth.
“The truth about what? About some of the most important questions that humans have ever asked.”
Does God really care about us?
Mmmm – the jury's surely out on that one. So how come he allows wars, pestilence, starvation and disease?
Will war and suffering ever end?
Seems pretty unlikely.
What happens to us when we die?
Heaven? Hell? Rebirth? Become part of the cosmic flux in another dimension. Who cares?
Is there any hope for the dead?
Tough question. Is there any hope for the living?
How can I pray and be heard by God?
Please yourself. Presumably he's omnipresent and hears everything?
How can I find happiness in life?
Sex and drugs and rock n roll. No – just kidding. Get some friends. Be kind to children and animals. Be helpful to everyone. Take care of your family. Drink moderately. Say no to drugs. Don't watch too much TV. Get plenty of sleep. Go to the gym. Do cardio-vascular exercise. Eat healthily and moderately. Meditate regularly. Seek the Tao. Find your individual Way towards enlightenment. Cultivate Zen.
Doh! Wrong answers, The answer to all these questions is . . . 'Read the Bible'. It's all in there.
“God cares so deeply about us that he has gone to great lengths to make the fulfillment of his purpose a certainty.” John 3:16
Really? Tell that to the victims of crime.
“God will wipe away every tear from their eyes and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore.” Revelation 21:3,4.
“The dead are conscious of nothing at all.” Ecclesiastes 9:5
Agree. I'd pretty much come to that conclusion myself.
“Since the dead cannot know, feel, or experience anything, they cannot harm – or help – the living.” Psalm 146: 3,4.
See? Don't worry. Be happy.
We don't know if this Delroy is guilty or not. For the sake of the rest of his sect he'd better not be guilty, or some serious questions are going to be asked about his ability to read and understand the book that's supposed to teach people the Truth and lead them down the path of true happiness. Either that or we'd better ask questions about the people who claim that reading the Bible is the solution to everything.