I am Kermit Gosnell.
You are Kermit Gosnell.
We are all Kermit Gosnell.
That is a hard, bitter pill to swallow, much less accept, sitting there, staring at us.
John 3:15 “Anyone who hates a brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.”
We are all sinners, and as heinous the acts are that Kermit Gosnell committed, we are all on the same level playing field in the sight of God. God hates sin. Period.
We humans put hierarchy, degrees and levels to sin so that we can measure out our ideas of justice. We sometimes wonder and hope that Dante’s Inferno really does exist with seven levels. Kermit Gosnell surely belongs in that lowest level, right alongside Adolf Hitler…
And yet Biblically, there is no foundation for such thinking. There is Paradise and Hades, Heaven and Hell, Eternal reward with God or eternal separation from God. You’re either in or you’re out. No purgatory, no in-between, no degrees of reward in Heaven or Hell as if there are levels.
“Hello, welcome to Heaven, you’ll be assigned to Copper Sector, Level 7, Eastern Pearly Gate.” Or, “Hi Joe! Welcome Home. You get the Platinum Pass, Platinum Sector, Level 1, Throne Room!” Or perhaps, “Well hello Ned, nice to see you. Mind the gap, you’ve got an eternal reward card for Level 7, Bottom of the Pit. Better watch out down there. It’s a bit dark, hot and mucky. Get ready to be flayed alive for all of eternity! It’s a riot!”
No. The Bible doesn’t really say anything about that. But it does say that we are all sinners, that we’re all deserving of punishment.
1 John 1:8 “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.”
Rom. 3:10 “As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one;”
Ps. 14:3 “All have turned away, all have become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one.”
Rom. 6:23a “ For the wages of sin is death;”
We must remember that God is Holy and perfect. This is more than our finite minds can comprehend, but to begin to grasp it is to understand why in God’s sight, the little white lie or the seething enmity towards a classmate or a murdering dictator across the globe is the same to Him as the fun bit of fornication you committed the other day with your fling or the hundreds of human beings Kermit Gosnell tortured and murdered. Imperfection ≠ perfection, thus a single blot is the same in His eyes as a completely soiled sheet.
Jesus and the Bible talks about which commandments are better than others or “the best”; not because there’s a ranking per se, but because the two primary commandments create a foundation or over-arches all of the rest that are mentioned. Conversely, while some sins are given more attention than others, and there is a mention of an “unpardonable” sin, we must note that Jesus treats everyone the same in the Gospels. From the prostitute to the Pharisee, from the cheating tax collector to the thief on the cross; he forgives their sins all the same.
But, there is Grace. There is Mercy. There is forgiveness. There is the Gospel, the Good News, and this is Christ Jesus. Jesus’s life and death bridge that gap for us, He washes us clean, whether we’ve just a blot or a completely blackened sheet.
“God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” 2 Cor. 5:21
“But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.” Is. 53:5
And this means, as difficult as it may be for us to stomach or understand, that Kermit Gosnell is a creation of God too. Jesus Christ died on the cross for Kermit Gosnell just as surely as He died on the cross for you and me. Mr. Gosnell can receive the same grace and mercy, the same forgiveness that you or I may have received if we’ve called on Him, repented, accepted Him and follow after Him.
There’s a second part to Romans 6:23 I posted above:
“but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Jesus died for us. Our debt has been paid, but the choice is ours to take it. There are many who refuse.
We should be praying for Kermit Gosnell just as surely as we should be praying for ourselves and others. We should be praying for Mr. Gosnell just as we should be praying for his victims. We should be praying and hoping that one day Mr. Gosnell will come to know Christ.
“…And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” Matt. 22:39
“”A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” Jn. 13:34
There is only one who knows the hearts of man, and that is not us. Let us love Mr. Gosnell for the sinner that he is, deserving of just as much forgiveness, salvation and grace as we who call ourselves Christians have.
- Seeing the Gospel In the Horrific Kermit Gosnell Case (blackchristiannews.com)