“Israel’s holy God, the Lord who saves you, says, ‘To save you I will send an army against Babylon; I will break down the city gates, and the shouts of her people will turn into crying’”.
Isa 43:14 GNB
Is there a purpose in all the madness, mayhem and murder that characterizes the modern world? Will “the free world” ever get total control over the sinister groups that send terrorists to murder, decapitate, and butcher innocent people? Will improved trading conditions ever lead to more prosperity in those parts of the world that seem to be trapped in self-perpetuating poverty and hunger? Are we building up to a great battle of Armageddon when the monstrous mess the world is in will finally come to a head and God will then sort it all out? Or will we muddle on for ever in despair, strife, and trouble?
In 722 B.C. the Assyrian empire had conquered the northern kingdom of Israel with ten out of the twelve tribes of Israelites lost for ever. Now the other two had been conquered by the new power of Babylon. Seemingly God had abandoned them – his promises forgotten, their dreams shattered. Then, from nowhere, came the prophet of the exile, Isaiah, with the only message that could help – “God is on the warpath. Soon he will defeat Babylon”.
In 1964 Martin Luther King said, “The forces of evil may temporarily conquer truth, but truth will ultimately conquer its conqueror. Our God is able. James Russell Lowell was right:
Truth forever on the scaffold, wrong forever on the throne, –
Yet that scaffold sways the future, and, behind the dim unknown,
Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own”
(M.L. King, Strength to Love, p110)
Lord, keep your mighty hand on this dark and troubled world.