Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Civilized people do NOT kill!

Today I saw the headlines again and knew what Jesus said is true, i.e. there will be wars and rumours of wars (Mark 13:7) until He comes again to judge and to reign. The ongoing conflict between the Western world and the Middle Eastern world and nations has been going on for a long,long time. In fact, since the boy David who became King of Israel, took a rock and slung it and killed Goliath, the giant of the Philistines. Somehow, knowing that on the one hand helps me keep the battle in perspective and so not to despair, and on the other hand, it makes me feel a sort of hopelessness that it will ever be resolved to everyone's satisfaction.
The truth is, it probably will continue until the day of Armageddon, the final battle depicted in the book of Revelations in the Holy Bible. That book once scared the wits out of me, when I was just in high school and totally ignorant of everything but the farm and my grades. Life was so simple then. I had no burden for the human race and no knowledge about other nations and the way they perceived events. But now I do.
About three years ago, I was living in Falls Church, Virginia, and I had the opportunity to go into The District for a meeting between Palestinians (Arabs) and Jews. It was held in some think tank place and had the usual we-don't-have-any-solutions-but-let-us-discuss-it-anyway approach. I listened to one speaker from Jerusalem and his words struck me as rather odd.He said the problem was that the Arabs and the Jews had nothing in common! Now I admit that shocked me some, because I study the Bible and have since I was a very young child. For years I had read how the sibling rivalry between the children of Abraham with Sarah, (Isaac's) and the children of Abraham and Hagar (Ishmael) had been warring factions probably since the time that Sarah insisted that Ishmael had no right to an inheritance. As you may remember God Himself intervened so that Ishmael did not die in the wilderness when he and his mother, Hagar, were cast out. But you know that had to create a lot of hostility and resentment, and yes, outright rage, that has simmered to this day! I can understand how and when the conflict began.
But the shocker to me was, that they seem to have forgotten the root cause of the problem--one who should know better said they had nothing in common!
Well, naive me, I stood up and said how could he say that when they had God in common and a common ancestor. Pandemonium broke loose I can tell you! If I had said that there is a ticking bomb under every chair the reaction probably would not have been more radical! It was if the words I spoke were a bomb!! I was stunned. My daughter was with me, she became afraid of the reaction and jerked on my skirt tail to make me sit down. I had no idea that my words would cause such an uproar when the truth is in the Bible! It is not my idea that the Arabs and Jews are related, I got it from the Bible--the entire story is there for anyone to read! (Genesis chapters 16-28) and of course the end has not been written yet. The book of Revelations that I mentioned already describes the end of the physical earth as we all know it, and the second coming of Jesus as Messiah.
Well, to get to the point, why can't they get along? And why can't they negotiate with each other because they are all children of Abraham, and they owe him something don't they? And I would like to ask each of them, what would Abraham do in this situation? Didn't he tell Lot, his brother, to pick out the land he wanted and that he Abraham would take what was left? Didn't he plead with God NOT to destroy the wicked cities? Didn't he please God?
Does God condone violence for the sake of violence?Or in the name of "rights"? I do not believe He does and I believe that when the Judgement Day comes, it is going to be awful. My other question is, why are the terrorists, who obviously have very smart minds, not just outsmarting their enemies instead of killing them? A stupid thug can kill [not that it makes it right] but a smart person can accomplish so much more than resorting to violence. The violence everywhere has to stop! God said, 'thou shalt not kill" and wrote it in stone and it was recorded by Moses in Exodus 20:13. Remember that David when he was merely a shepherd boy had the chance to kill King Saul and he would not do it. And God made him king! Pleasing God by showing mercy seems to me a much better way--it takes a big man with a good heart, the kind that pleases God to know his own power and then NOT kill or destroy! In fact, it is what separates the heathen from the God-fearing and the barbarians from the civilized.


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