Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Thought of the Day !!

My eyes fail from weeping,
  I am in torment within,
my heart is poured out on the ground
  because my people are destroyed,
because children and infants faint
  in the streets of the city.
                             Lamentations 2:11 (NIV)

I remember my affliction and my wandering,
   the bitterness and the gall.
 I well remember them,
    and my soul is downcast within me.
 Yet this I call to mind
    and therefore I have hope:

 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
    for his compassions never fail.
 They are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.
 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion;
    therefore I will wait for him.”

 The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him,
    to the one who seeks him;
 it is good to wait quietly
    for the salvation of the Lord.
                         Lamentations 3:19-26 (NIV)

Lamentations is a small book in the Bible that is written by the prophet Jeremiah as a lament about the condition of Judah.  The Babylonians have come and destroyed the temple and taken many into slavery while killing others and leaving still others destitute.  This is not a good time for God's people.  The Northern Kingdom of Israel has already been taken by the Assyrians and now the rest of God's children are being conquered.

This is definitely not a good time in Israel's history.  So why would God allow such a thing to happen to those He has called to be His people?  The answer, in a nutshell, is sin.  Sin is our turning away from God.  The Israelites turned their backs on God by worshiping other gods and the idols of neighboring countries.  For this, they were punished.

In 2 Kings there is a king named Ahaziah in the Northern Kingdom of Israel.  He falls and hurts himself.  Instead of seeking help or understanding from his God, he chose to sent a group of people to a far away country to consult the god Baal-Zebub.  Baal-Zebub is referred to in the New Testament by Jesus but by the more common Beelzebub (a term sometimes used for the devil).

Even today we can ask the question why.  Why do such bad things happen?  Ultimately, the answer is sin.  It's not that the good folks that are suffering today from this or that have reached out to Beelzebub.  But we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.  And over time, since the beginning of this world with Adam and Eve, sin has occurred and changed God's perfect creation into something much worse.

I look out my window and see a beautiful scene.  The sun is up.  The grass is a pretty green.  If I stay here long enough I might catch some deer coming into the yard.  But even this beautiful scene is not without it's flaws.  There are still brown spots and places I cannot get grass to grow.  There is a dead limb hanging from a tree in the middle of my view.  This is typical of God's creation; greatness skewed by some flaws.  It's humanities flaws (or sin) that has made God's creation less than perfect.  And the domino effect from Adam and Eve forward has made things go bad in this world.

Oh there's more to it than this.  But in a nutshell, bad things have always happened as a result of this world becoming imperfect through humanity's sin.  But instead of leaving with this dismal thought, let me finish up with Jeremiah's conclusion.  He stated that God's faithfulness to us is great, even though ours to him may not always be.  He said that our salvation is in Him.

One day this good, yet imperfect, world will pass away.  Salvation comes to those whose hope is in the Lord.  On that day sin will be eradicated.  On that day perfection will be restored.  On that day there will be no more suffering.  Praise God who is faithful to His children.

In the love of Christ,


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