Today I want to start by playing a game. I will start a saying, and you fill in the rest of it.
When the cat’s away…
A rolling stone…
The early bird…
God helps those…
(Answers at the end, if you need them)
It may surprise you, but this last one is not in the Bible. Somehow it has been accepted that we must be busy making it happen. God will see your good works and efforts, then He will step in and help you out. This statement seems to have originated with Algernon Sydney in 1698, an English political theorist, in his article titled Discourses Concerning Government.
I am bringing this up because we sometimes all the tragedies going on in our world today, the rise of Islam, the rise of secular humanism, the rise of the left, the anti-God movement, and the falling way of our nation from its moral base, make us wonder what God is doing.
I am not going to get into the debate of the sovereignty of God and does man have a free will. We will leave this debate to the theologians.
We do believe that God is still on the throne and that there is a purpose in what is happening. Some develop an indifferent, fatalistic view that says, since God is sovereign, simply yield and don’t do anything to stop what is happening.
Some criticize Christians who get involved in politics. During the 2008 election, many were not going to vote for Romney because he is a Mormon, and they couldn’t vote for Obama, so they just didn’t vote. They didn’t vote in 2012 for similar reasons.
Some actually told me that God is judging America, why should I stand in His way? This is what I call Indifferent Fatalism.
Another view is Compatibilism, God is sovereign yet our choices have real meaning and we are responsible for them.
The questions I want to ask are, should we get involved in the political issues we talk about at Fortress of Faith? Or should we just yield to what God is doing and let it happen? Are we preventing what God wants to happen if we try to put roadblocks in the way? For example, should we try to fight against the M103 bill in Canada? What if this becomes law and brings Canadians into submission to Islam? They won’t be able to speak out against Sharia Law. If God is sovereign, why should we put forth the effort to fight things like this?
This reminds me of a story where, during a flood, a man is on his roof as the water rises. Two boats and Helicopter come by to rescue him. The man rejects the help from each one saying God will save him. Next scene he is heaven and he asks God, “Why did you not save me” God responds, “I sent two boats and a helicopter.”
I believe that God gives us the opportunity to fight for what is right and against what is evil. We are not to just sit back and allow evil to take over.
When I was growing up, one verse really spoke to me and guided me.
Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it. (Psalm 34:14 )
There are four verbs in this verse. They indicate that there are four actions we are to take. We are to depart from evil. When evil shows up, we are to get away from it.
In opposition to evil, we are to be doing good. We are not to be passive and look to Heaven and say, God, I guess you are just allowing all this evil to come into our society, so I will just accept it and yield.
We are to seek peace, and when we find it we are to pursue it. We are to eagerly work to bring about peace.
For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. (Philippians 2:13 )
God works through us to bring about His good pleasure. We are not sit idly by and let sin abound. We are to be doing His will.
When terrible thing happen, we need to realize that God does allow tragedies to occur, but there is something on the other end of it. We may not be able to see His hand in it right away, but with hindsight we can see that He was working it out for good.
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28)
We often quote this verse, we need to remember that it is actually true.
Some things looked like real tragedies, but actually turned out for good. One example is the conversion of the number one terrorist against Christians, Saul.
As for Saul, he made havock of the church, (Acts 8:3)
[He was] …. Persecutor, Injurious… (1 Timothy 1:13)
…how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it: (Galatians 1:13)
After his conversion in Acts Chapter 9, he was used of God to write most of our New Testament.
Could you imagine God saving a man like Osama BinLaden? God has the ability to take the most awful things and turning them around.
Saul’s persecution turned out to be a blessing to mankind as the gospel spread from Jerusalem to flourish throughout the world.
Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word. (Acts 8:4)
Because of this persecution, the Word of God was preached and the Gospel was spread throughout the world.
There were three events that happened in the 1,400’s:
- Rise of Islam in the Middle East cut off trade routes to the East. This caused the Europeans to seek for another route. This led to Christopher Columbus sailing West to find India. The result was the discovery of America. If Islam had not risen up, Columbus would not have taken his trip which discovered the “New World.”
- Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press. As a young apprentice to a Goldsmith he would practice his carvings in wood blocks. He knocked one this blocks off the table and it fell into a bucket of dye. He retrieved it left it dry on a piece of paper. The engravings left a printed image on the paper and also on his mind. Later he would create the first movable type printing press that brought us the printed Bible.
- The Fall of Constantinople in 1453 by the Ottoman Turks caused the Greek Scholars to flee West. They brought with them the early manuscripts of the NT. Many of these people found their way in England and at Cambridge a aspiring scholar by the name of Erasmus was able to formulate the first printing of the Greek NT. This led to the early English translations of our Holy Bible.
All of this confirms what we learned in Romans 8:28, God will work out all things for good in the end.
There are some terrible things going on in our wold, and it troubles me. I think we should do all we can to oppose evil and do good. If we don’t succeed, we need to realize that God is still sovereign, and He may be taking these tragedies and tuning them into a triumph.
Could it be that the rise of Islam and the rise of leftists, who reign in our colleges, courts and most of our government, might bring about a calamitous fall, collapse, implosion. They might also bring about an opportunity for the God fearing, righteous people to wrest back our broken nation and rebuild it again?
Many times, Israel fell in the hands of ungodly leaders. God would allow them run to their own ruin, causing the children to God to return back to God and plead for mercy and forgiveness. Then God would restore them to blessing again.
When the cat’s away….. the mice will play
A rolling stone….gathers no moss
The early bird…catches the worm
God helps those….. who help themselves.