Kobe Bryant was an American sports icon, and his daughter, 13-year-old Gianna, an up-and-coming basketball star yearning to follow in her father’s footsteps. Both died Sunday morning, along with 7 others, in a helicopter crash in California.
Within hours, news had spread around the world and news channels were dedicating hours of broadcast time to the life of a great basketball player and, apparently, a good father. People should mourn those they look up to. Those 9 people, Kobe included, were all born in the image of God and deeply loved by Him (whether or not they knew Christ personally). Mourning their loss is appropriate.
But who mourns the oppressed? When over 6 million Jews were exterminated in the Holocaust, did tens of thousands gather outside the gates of Auschwitz (or anywhere else), as they gathered outside Staples Arena (the place where Kobe made his millions playing a child’s game)?
7 But the Lord abides forever;~Psalm 9:7-9
He has established His throne for judgment,
8 And He will judge the world in righteousness;
He will execute judgment for the peoples with equity.
9 The Lord also will be a stronghold for the oppressed,
A stronghold in times of trouble
18 [The Lord will] vindicate the orphan and the oppressed, so that man who is of the earth will no longer cause terror.~Psalm 10:18
6 The Lord performs righteous deeds and judgments for all who are oppressed.~Psalm 103:6
Who mourns for the thousands of unborn babies murdered day-after-day in abortion clinics around the world? Does anyone care? Does anyone hear the silent screams of those being tortured in the womb?
13 For You formed my inward parts;~Psalm 139:13-16
You wove me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth;
16 Your eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Your book were all written
The days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.
5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,~Jeremiah 1:5
And before you were born I consecrated you.
15 “Can a woman forget her nursing child~Isaiah 49:15-16 [Emphasis mine]
And have no compassion on the son of her womb?
Even these may forget, but I will not forget you.
16 “Behold, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands…
These are sad days in America. Some lost a sports hero, a man and his daughter born in the image of God. Mourning is okay, but there are other great losses for which the Bible teaches us to mourn. Are we mourning the millions and millions who have been senselessly murdered half as much as we mourn the loss of a sports figure?
My simple prayer is that we mourn accordingly. Sure, mourn the death of Kobe, Gianna and the other 7. But mourn continually for the unborn and those facing oppression due to Antisemitism today. Virtually no one stands up for them, and they certainly don’t have news channels clamoring to tell their stories. The Holocaust may have officially ended, but the world is still filled with hate-mongers anxious to kill those deemed unnecessary.