Retrospective #1: God’s judgment

The Convergence Of Events

By Allan Erickson  August 31st, 2005

The convergence of events: judgment, calamity and personal responsibility….

Recent events raise interesting questions surrounding God’s judgment either by direct intervention, or by simply removing his hand of protection. Some people blame God for disaster. Somebody must be responsible, or so we think. Someone must be blamed.

The environmentalists want to make political headway, blaming global warming for Katrina. The commercial interests want to blame the environmentalists for high gas prices, saying they’ve thwarted oil and gas development. The Jews blame the Arabs and Arabs blame Jews. One race blames another, the Right blames the Left, the Left blames the Right, the atheist blames the faithful and the faithful tend to blame the godless.

Anymore, thanks to global mass media, humanity seems preoccupied with an enormous blame game. Ironically, nobody appears willing to take responsibility. Perhaps we are all to blame?

In reading “The Light and the Glory” by Peter Marshall, I’m learning more about the Puritans and the Pilgrims who can rightly be credited with being used of the Lord to establish a Christian democracy on this continent. If I’m reading the accounts correctly, they didn’t blame the Church of England. They didn’t tend to blame the King or the Archbishop for their woes. Neither did they blame the Indians or the elements for the depravations they suffered in the early days of trying to establish colonies.

Rather, they were intensely focused on searching within to determine if they were in the center of God’s will, or not.

When disaster befell them, their first reaction was generally, “What did we do to provoke the Lord?” They saw the Lord in everything. When they enjoyed blessings, they gave him credit. When they experienced difficulties, they asked if God was disciplining them, or if it was simply an attack from the Enemy. In this they exhibited a childlike faith, simply depending upon our heavenly Daddy for provision and protection. They lived a solid and simple truth, that fallen people in a fallen world will have troubles without end, and even sanctified people must daily confront the flesh in order to please the Lord.

Living this way, they found peace with God, with each other, and with the Indians, and they prospered where so many others had failed.

Katrina may be God’s judgment on New Orleans for that city’s depravity. The pullout from Gaza may grieve the Lord because the forces of righteousness appear in retreat. I don’t know. These things are too big for me.

I do know when God’s people seek him in the morning, and genuinely try to please him throughout the day, we are blessed and protected and used as lights to attract the hurting and the hopeless.

We have great opportunities to stand with the Jews, to whom we owe everything, and we have enormous opportunities to witness to the world by the way we stand with those suffering in the Gulf States, just as we have stood with the tsunami victims and the victims of Saddam.

In the wake of Katrina we will see the love of the church poured out, and we will see God move in our weakness, illustrating to the spiritually sensitive that self-reliance is an illusion, but trust in God is the only firm foundation, a foundation able to withstand every tempest.

Article © 2005 Allan Erickson, all rights reserved.


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