Monday, October 6, 2014


I have been reflecting lately in the Biblical record on how God almost always sent a warning before His judgment fell.  In Genesis chapters 6-8, the preaching of Noah went on for 120 years before the global deluge.  The core of his message was confrontational, calling people to repent of their wickedness before God shut the door of the ark and then it would be too late.  Literally everyone turned a deaf ear except Noah’s wife, his sons and their wives.  Only 7 conversions in 120 years…and then it was only his family?  Ouch! In Genesis 18-19 angels visited the city of Sodom with a warning about its wickedness shortly before it was destroyed by fire and brimstone.  Again, the people of the city were universally resolute in their rebellion against the loving ethical reign of a Holy God.  Abraham had personally negotiated with God.  They had mutually agreed that if 10 righteous persons could be found in Sodom, the city would be spared!  Didn’t happen.  They could not find 10.  So again, it’s pretty much Lot and his family; sadly, minus even his own wife as it turned out.
Then in Exodus it’s the plagues, which should have served as a warning to the Pharaoh about what kind of disaster he was in store for unless he relented and released the Hebrew slaves.  By contrast, in the book of Jonah there is something of a success story.  The sobering influence of his time spent in the belly of the great fish got Jonah’s attention and then his preaching got the attention of the city of Nineveh.  So, here we have a warning heeded and a response that saved the lives of thousands.
All this to say, how do we interpret all the ‘stuff’ that has happened in the last 20 years or so?  The AIDS epidemic, war-fueled PTSD, alcohol and drug addiction and now Ebola…the political chaos and human suffering of 9/11, the Middle East War on Terror, ever-escalating wars and rumors of wars…the natural disasters like tsunamis, earthquakes, droughts, floods, fires, pollution and nuclear meltdowns…the global financial implosion in 2008 and the looming disastrous economic impact of our national debt…the breakdown of the contemporary family through easy divorce, government subsidized abortion, weekly school shootings, the redefinition of marriage as no longer only between a man and a woman, growing gender identity confusion…
People are sensing our world is coming unraveled.  Something is drastically wrong.  Even honest unbelievers will admit that the wisdom and wealth of this world don’t provide hope.  So, where do we go?  The Psalmist said it this way in Psalm 119:114, “I have hope in You [Lord].  You are my refuge and shield; I have put my hope in Your Word.”
Pray with me… Our Loving Creator, we come to you in brokenness and humility.  Like the residents of Nineveh long ago, we want to heed Your call for us to repent both personally and as a nation.  We want to pay attention to Your hand of discipline moving in this world in our generation.  We commit to realign our priorities and recalibrate our hearts.  As Your people, we know that is the place where you want to be loved and worshipped first.  Take that throne God, and establish your loving eternal reign.  In the name of Jesus, the one who makes it possible we pray, amen.

Pastor Ken

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