Recently I saw an unsettling video that is being circulated on social media in which a young man unexpectedly hits a woman in the face as she is walking down the street, knocking her out cold. It seems that in the Thug World the “Knock Out Game” has become popular. This is where the perpetrator “blindsides” someone by hitting the unsuspecting victim in an effort to knock them out. Incredibly, some people see nothing wrong with this, even finding it funny, as someone films the attack while friends look on.

This trend of increasing random acts of violence is very troubling on so many levels. I am deeply disturbed as I ask myself, “What’s wrong with people that anyone could find it acceptable, even humorous, to hit a person for no real reason, accosting women and even the elderly who can be permanently injured, possibly killed by a severe blow to the head?” One of the things that bothered me the most about the video was that there was a large crowd of bystanders who saw the attack take place, and not a single one came to the aid of the woman.

As discomforting as this evil is, we shouldn’t really be surprised to see the wickedness increasing around us. Jesus said that the day would come where “because of wickedness, the love of many will grow cold” (Matt. 24: 12). We must not be surprised or “blindsided” by the reality that a time will come when people will persecute us merely because we are followers of Christ (Matt. 24:9; Luke 21:12; John 15:20).

I have a very big spot in my heart for the weak and defenseless. The fact is that, as a child, many people bullied me, so I have deep visceral reaction when I see any form of bullying being perpetrated against others as it was done to me. One of my biggest challenges is my tendency to want to come to the aid of others and exact vengeance upon the wicked. I believe strongly that everyone has a godly right to self-defense and a moral obligation to defend others, but I must let go of my feelings of vengeance. Hanging on to feelings like that will only lead to resentment, bitterness, and unforgiveness, causing our love to grow cold as well, which is one of the snares of the Devil. We all must guard our hearts so that the increasing wickedness around us doesn’t cause us to be “blindsided” by the Adversary.