The Lord is...patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9 NIV
I couldn’t believe it, but there it was in front of me. Images of people dancing in the streets, on the news of a woman’s death. Not Islamist militants in the far east, but in Glasgow and Brixton, it was an angry mob at its worst. I bear no allegiance to a political party, and am not a member of any, but I was disgusted at the behaviour of these UK residents. One celebrity politician from the strangely named ‘Respect’ political party said, ‘I hope she burns in hell’. This from a man who doesn’t believe in the place!
It is no secret that there is no love lost between the average Scot and Margaret Thatcher, and that is understandable. It is even allowed. Disagreement with others, whether in politics or religion happens, and will always be with us, but mob celebration? Such is the vitriol exhibited by some of the banner waving, drunken louts, many of whom would have been in nappies, or maybe hadn’t been born when Maggie was Prime Minister.
I am reminded of Rabbie Burns words, “... gathering brows like gathering storm, nursing her wrath to keep it warm”. Were these people waiting for her death so that they could party? Social media can be a good thing, but there are times when it is abused and misused in the hands of a bad lot. Martin Luther King also said, “... nobody should rejoice in the death and defeat of another human being”. Wise words from a man who knew real abuse, but wasted on the minds of a mob on a spineless rampage, looking for an excuse to riot, and trying to blame someone who has been out of politics for 30 years.
There was something else that disturbed me greatly today. The spiteful comments of professing and active ‘christians’ (small c) under the guise of social justice, who certainly didn’t sound or look like the Jesus they claim to follow. Our litmus test should be WWJD (What Would Jesus Do). For me, that was the biggest let down. Some of us should know better, especially when a living is made from the very Church that Jesus died for. Is it too much to ask for some dignity in our disagreements? Rant over!!
Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Romans 13:2-4 NIV
You will hear of wars and rumours of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. Matt 24:5-7 NIV
I am no expert on any subject, as anyone who reads my thoughts regularly will know, but something isn’t right ‘out there’ in the big wide world. Do you keep an eye on the news? If so, you will have seen the same things as me. Things like:
The Arab Spring which fades almost as fast as it rises, and in its wake leaves thousands dead or injured.
The monetary crisis in Europe’s Eurozone started by a few financial ‘experts’, but affecting millions of ordinary people.
Global Warming affecting the polar icecaps at a rate never before known, causing tidal changes which in turn affects global temperatures and impacts established climate patterns.
A drop in ethics and morality in the civilised, once Christian western cultures, leading to high crime rates and a generation which is not taught the difference between good and evil, because evil may not exist, and everything is relative. Nothing is absolute, and especially not truth.
Then, at least for me, the biggest one of all is the sabre rattling of North Korea as it thumbs its nose in hatred of the capitalist ‘religious’ western world in general, and the USA in particular. While they posture, and position their long range, possibly nuclear missiles in areas to target enemy nations around the globe, we shiver in fear and disbelief. The chances are, if you are reading this, you are living in a country which is already in the crosshairs of their sights.
Any one of these, taken on its own, would be trouble enough, but when they all happen together you could be forgiven for thinking about that ‘perfect storm’ which in some folk’s minds could spell Armageddon, or is that taking it too far? Prophecy is not my strong point, but the signs are undeniable and plain to see, so could they show a clear and present danger to civilisation as we know it today? If so, what do we do about it? In fact, what can we do about it at our level? Maybe not a lot when we think of the complexity of the world stage.
Jesus has some advice for His followers. He tells us not to be alarmed. Nice one! Jesus tells us not to worry! What, seriously? Does Jesus not know what is happening today? Of course he does, and that makes His advice even more important and relevant. There is nothing we can do to influence world politics, but there is something we can do for ourselves, and that is stop worrying. However, in truth, we can only do that when we are resting fully in the safety of His Salvation and love. We need to get right before a Holy and Just God, stay there, and start to live Christ-like lives as though we mean it. How many warnings would it take for us to do that I wonder? Just asking.
The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. 2 Peter 3:9-11 NIV