Insight on the News
Reflecting the steady increase in violence among teenagers, American Health journal reports that “fights with friends, classmates and neighbors constitute the No. 1 killer of urban adolescents and the No. 2 killer of all adolescents in America.”
In an effort to counter violent tendencies, a Boston counseling center offers a course that enables its students to act out short documentary dramas on violence. In this way, they “begin to recognize the patterns associated with violence” and, explains the program director, are able to “see those angry patterns in themselves.”
The students learn of the physiological response to anger, of the increased flow of adrenaline that overrides self-control, and the value of communication in cooling anger “before the body reacts biochemically.” They learn that by asking questions and talking calmly and deliberately, a heated confrontation can be avoided.
Bible students have long recognized that violence begets violence and that, “an answer, when mild, turns away rage.” (Proverbs 15:1) The Bible advises us to flee, right at the outset, when we are faced with a potentially explosive confrontation. Wise King Solomon wrote: “The beginning of contention is as one letting out waters; so before the quarrel has burst forth, take your leave.”—Proverbs 17:14.
A Structured Universe
At the end of May some 200 physicists, including several Nobel prize winners, convened in Blois, France. Their week-long meeting was to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the discovery of “CP violation,” an apparent violation of laws thought to establish perfect symmetry between matter and antimatter.
But this theory poses as many problems as it solves. Quoting Soviet Professor Andrei Linde, the International Herald Tribune reported: “The paradox,” he said, “is that this asymmetry produced the ordered universe.” Asked whether “CP violation” indicated a purpose in the universe, French cosmologist Jean Audouze stated: “Some days I think yes, some days no. The universe is not uniform. And the universe is structured. And these two things are amazing. The universe is not something that happened at random.”
It is neither by accident nor at random that the universe came to exist. Genesis 1:1 says: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” The universe is orderly because Jehovah, the Creator, “is a God, not of disorder,” but One whose works are “perfect.”—1 Corinthians 14:33; Deuteronomy 32:4; compare Isaiah 40:26; 42:5.
Homosexuality and Catholics
The pope has repeatedly stated that the Catholic Church’s official position on homosexual behavior is that it is morally wrong. As he explains, “the early Christian society was certainly not permissive.” Not all Catholic bishops and priests agree.
Early in 1989, French bishop Jacques Gaillot claimed that he was simply echoing Jesus’ words when he wrote that “homosexuals are going ahead of us into the kingdom of God.”
What Bishop Gaillot failed to mention, however, was that Jesus was referring to repentant harlots—not practicing prostitutes—as those who would enter the Kingdom of God ahead of obstinate Jewish leaders of his day.—Matthew 21:28-32.
Similarly, Spanish priest José Ramón Carrasco recently wrote in the Madrid newspaper El País that “Jesus Christ never condemned homosexuals. . . . When he spoke of love, he spoke of love of neighbor and he never specified whether the neighbor had to be a man or a woman, or what posture, form or way he loved.”
The Biblical account, however, shows that Jesus was not referring to homosexual relationships. In the parable of the Good Samaritan, he explained exactly what love of neighbor meant, namely, showing an unselfish interest in the welfare of others.—Luke 10:29-37.
The Bible states regarding practicers of homosexuality: “Do not be deceived; neither the immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals . . . will inherit the kingdom of God.”—1 Corinthians 6:9-11, Revised Standard Version, Catholic edition.