Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Terrorists kill thousands in senseless attacks. Wars force tattered families�crippled seniors and helpless infants�from their homes. Teenagers murder their classmates. Children disappear. In the midst of the world's carnage, it is only natural to wonder, Where is GOD in all this? Why doesn't He do something? Why does He allow this to happen?

As difficult as it may be to understand, God already has done something. He sent His Son to save us. But Jesus Christ did not enter this world to thwart criminals or overthrow governments. He came to change our hearts. Even the people of Jesus' day thought their Savior had came to liberate them from oppression. But He did not. He told them, "My kingdom is not of this world...."1

This world�with all its godless wars, murders and inhumanity�exists under the dominion of Satan. Though the Bible clearly states the absolute authority of God, Satan has been given much power, and the evil in this world is under his control.2 That's why the apostle Paul asserted, "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against..the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."3

Satan was the first one in history to openly defy God. He also started a philosophy of life that was self-centered and rejected God's authority. That was the birth of sin. Sin assumes a self-designed life plan rather than one purposed by the Creator. Today sin affects the entire human race. We are all guilty of it, and therefore all deserve sin's penalty. "For the wages of sin is death...."4

According to the Bible, peace on earth will not come until after God's final judgments and Christ's Second Coming.5 But peace with God is available now for all who faithfully accept Jesus' death as payment for their sin. "Since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ."6 Yes, God permitted evil to be present in this world. He gave all of us, including Satan, free will. He allows us to choose whether or not we will follow Him. If God forced us to love and worship Him...that wouldn't be love. He lets us make up our own minds. Satan and death were defeated when Jesus Christ rose again after dying on the cross.7 Satan has no reprieve. But you still have a chance. You can come to know "the peace of God, which transcends all understanding"8 by acknowledging the sin in your life and believing that Christ's death on the cross paid sin's penalty for you and that His resurrection offers you new life.

We will never know all the answers to the question, "Why, God?" But when you open your life to Jesus Christ, He promises to walk with you through this world's troubles. You will begin to see the world through His eyes. And He will birth new feelings inside you that you may not have felt for a long time, if ever...feelings like love, joy, hope...and peace. Jesus said, "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."9

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