Charles Manson: Rot in Hell?
The infamous Charles Manson passed away recently while serving a life sentence in prison. His name is synonymous with evil and is known by nearly all Americans. We know him to have been a cult leader who convinced his followers to commit nine gruesome murders. Our initial response is to say good riddance and go to Hell. This is the most common reaction I have seen online and this response is simply wrong. I am more concerned that Manson may not have repented for his sins and may be lost soul who will go to Hell. That is no good thing.
Charles Manson had a deeply disordered soul. As a Christian, I mourn that Satan had prevailed within this man leading him to murder innocent people. In the Lord’s Prayer we pray “forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” I think this is something we need to keep in mind when considering his death. We must not succumb to evil ourselves in condemning this man’s soul because we are also flawed. Manson is deceased and may face eternal damnation in Hell. He also was brought to justice through our legal system while still alive. We are sinners only saved under the glory of God. We do not deserve this divine forgiveness, but the Lord forgives and so must we. Rather than respond to Manson’s passing with hate, we should take a more somber approach. Of course we understand that he did very evil acts, but we should not react in an unchristian way. We must not respond to a man who committed evil deeds with evil thoughts of our own.
This is not a time for celebration, but rather a time for contemplation. We should think about what evil man is capable when he turns away from God. We should work to ensure that good prevails over evil in our own lives on Earth. We should pray for those who have not been saved and have committed evil acts. We do not know if Manson ever atoned, but we do know that he was deranged and broke away from God while on Earth. We should not be ecstatic about a man’s death, especially when we ourselves are fallen creatures forgiven by God and given the opportunity to eternal life in Heaven only through his grace.