Today is 16 years since Columbine. My mom and I were laying in beds in a Kibbutz in Eilat, Israel, getting over a GI ailment acquired in Egypt. We were more than 1/2 way done with our trip, and that was the day we had planned to cross the border into Jordan and go see Petra. Instead, we lay there on our beds, taking turns running to the toilet. We were watching CNN and saw the Columbine shooting as it happened. I was astounded, and told my mom: “Hey mom – that’s where I just moved!” I had moved my stuff down (to Denver, from Seattle) there in February and March, and stayed in a tent in a campground temporarily while mom and I waited to go on our trip to Israel and Egypt (March-April).
It was a disappointment – to say the least – to not get to go into Jordan for our planned excursion, but it was a very severe spiritual blow to have this shooting happen in the town where I had just moved. At the time I remember thinking that Colorado must be the “Front lines” in our nation in terms of spiritual battlegrounds. The enemy was working hard to try to rock Colorado, and our nation, and the world with an act of pure evil committed on Adolph Hitler’s birthday.
I read the Wikipedia article on the shooting, it’s pretty good, only they missed some interesting testimony that Cheryl and I turned up some months after the disaster. When I got back from Israel, I hadn’t even met Cheryl yet, but I felt very bad about the shooting, so I went to Columbine, and found the makeshift Memorial fence where all the messages and such were attached to the chain-link. It was a cold and rainy day, and I was the only person there, about 3 weeks after it happened I think. So I prayed and tried to see anything I could, but there wasn’t much to see beyond reading the notes and signs left by friends, family and others.
It never really went out of my mind though, something like that has a very lasting impact on a community, and especially on me, since I was so keenly aware of the spiritual implications of the attack. I met Cheryl in June of that year. We didn’t really start dating that day, in fact, she only remembers about the day she met me that I was some weirdo who she was trying to get away from! A couple months later and we were dating, after I pursued her. So it was roughly about 6 months after Columbine, I don’t remember exactly, but around that time, that we went to the school – the two of us.
We walked around the school, it had been repaired, all the gunfire damage gone. They had moved some things around, I believe they moved or rebuilt the west entrance completely. But we prayer walked the entire school, I remember it was still summer, and they were planning on re-opening in the Fall. So, we prayed, and walked, and we went to the Memorial in the Park and read all the inscriptions there. We prayed there too. Then we met a Park Superintendent. I don’t remember his name, but it would be on record, he was on duty the day of the shooting. In fact, he said, he had been at that park (Clement Park) for many years, it was “His” park pretty much he said.
What happened was that some sales guy came that day to sell them something or other, and he was walking around the park with this guy, and some other assistant. There were 3 of them I think he said. They walked up on a grassy hill where they had a view of the school and they saw Harris, or Kelbold, or both of them going in the west entrance to the school. He recognized the boys (I’ll explain in a second) and half expected them to wave or shout or something but then they turned and fired the machine pistol they had with them. He said bullets hit the ground in front of them and they all “Hit the dirt”. He had been in Vietnam if I remember right, he was a bit older than Cheryl and I, so he recognized gunfire when he heard it and saw it and instinctively reacted.
He knew both Harris and Klebold because the boys used to hang out in the park at night with their buddies practicing martial arts with their swords, though likely they used wooden sticks in the park, he didn’t really say, but I would imagine that was the case. The strange thing was, he said, was that the boys always used to wave and say “Hello Mr. _____” whenever they saw him in the park. He KNEW the boys quite well! He said he never could imagine boys who were seemingly so nice doing such an evil thing!
Cheryl and I were kind of stunned by all that, but with much reflection I believe it tells us that literally anybody can turn into a homicidal maniac given the right circumstances. While I think that’s partially true, at the same time I believe that it’s not very likely at all that this would happen to a Christian. When it comes to spiritual attacks, and I have seen some big ones, Christians are protected by the blood of Jesus. What does that mean you ask? Well, it means simply that demons, the evil “Helpers” of Satan, they can accost Christians, bother them, even oppress them with heaviness and feelings of dread and so on, but they cannot enter a Christian or take over their body. The basic reason is that the Holy Spirit enters and indwells a Christian when they are born again (converted). That fact bars entrance by demons – period.
That doesn’t mean Christians are immune to attack by demons, as I said before, it means they cannot “Control” (or indwell) a Christian. They can still have enormous influence, and it’s important for Christians to stay rooted and grounded in a firm Bible believing church where they can grow, pray, and be protected along with other Christians.
This is profound in its significance for many reasons. First it means that Satan doesn’t usually spend much time dealing with non-Christians (so called “Unbelievers”), because they are already lost and part of his (Satan’s) kingdom; second, it means that Satan does spend a great deal of time attacking Christians to destroy their witness, to make unbelievers think they are fools for believing in “Fairy tales” and such, and trying to make all Christians sound like reactionary (or old-fashioned) idiots who are just trying to get your money and have influence over you (if you aren’t a Christian). Thirdly, and perhaps most important is that since Christians are automatically protected, it then requires extra resources on Satan’s part in order to attack a Christian.
When you add all that up, it would appear that our enemy Satan spends most of his time and resources attacking Christians! Satan doesn’t really need to spend too much time on the world, human greed, selfishness and pride, etc… (sin) will do most of the work for him. What this means is that if he can just infect a few individuals and cause powerful things to happen such as the Columbine shooting, as well as power-hungry megalomaniacs like Adolph Hitler, then he can certainly remain the “Prince of this world” and be a constant threat to God’s people (both Christians and Jews).
Oddly enough, it appears most likely that Harris and Klebold were not planning the atrocity for Hitler’s birthday, but the day prior, April 19, which was the Anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing, and the day in which the Waco immolation occurred. Their plan was to surpass those earlier events with their actions.
Now we come to the critical issue of how so few were killed when the perpetrators planned to carry out a massive killing spree? Again, I must point you to the spiritual aspects of this crime. With no disrespect for the victims or their relatives and friends, I think we can say it is miraculous that so few were killed! The two large propane bombs they made could have killed or seriously injured everyone in the cafeteria alone – had their plan worked. Many of their pipe bombs also failed to detonate, and the fact that most students had sufficient “Cover” at that point made the pipe bombs have very little actual effect. The fact that Harris and Klebold grew “Bored” with their shooting, leads one to a rough conclusion that their “Attack” had achieved the desired effect in the Satanic realm, at which point Satan simply withdrew his demonic influences from the boys, and they ceased to be “Thrilled” by the killing.
That which they had planned with so much attention to detail, which failed to materialize as they planned, and failed to give the desired “Thrill” result, became their ultimate source of depression. At that point, it must be depression, since how else could one say that they chose to carry out the suicides to conclude the attack when they had written about escape in their journals?
In the end analysis then I thank God for His blocking the plans of these two demented individuals and this evil attack. Young, impressionable boys who had been bullied and harassed turning them into pathetic shadows of normal people, who also lurked in darkness. Theirs is a difficult tale, but one which God turned into a triumph by saving so many who Satan had marked for death.
Please see the Wikipedia article for more information and links to more resources.
A decent article on Demon possession that answers whether Christians can be possessed: