Dear Prayer Partners,
Saturday has been a slow day and it was planned that way. After four flights and two, two-hour car rides in five days, I put a slow weekend into my schedule before heading to Liberia on Monday. The only activity was a near two-mile walk to and from YaYa Center to get a healthy Center at Java House; a repeat of last weekend. But I used some of my free time to write up a worldview response to the questions I’ve heard regarding war and genocide.
Here is that worldview response.
I just returned from a day in Rwanda, and I learned that one of the questions that Christians ask there is, “Why did God allow the genocide?” This sounds a lot like the question asked in Cameroon, “Churches are praying that God will stop the war. Why doesn’t He answer and stop the war?”
If you remember the answer I gave to the Cameroon question, you will know the answer to the Rwanda question. What was the answer? If God chose to end the war in Cameroon, and He could, to be fair, wouldn’t He have to end the war in Ukraine where Christians are involved? And to follow that answer logically, to be fair, shouldn’t He end all wars where Christians are praying for the end of their war? And what about every other war in history where Christians were praying?
Now, what about the genocide in Rwanda? Why did God allow it? To answer that question, we would have to consider every genocide in history. How about the ongoing attempted genocide of the Christians by the Boko Haram in Nigeria? And what about the Roman persecution of the Christians in Rome in the early history of the church?
Do you see my point? How should we look at these atrocities? It is normal to look at life through our own experience but we, as Christians, need to train ourselves to look at world events through the “lens” of Scripture. Or to say it another way, we need to make sure we are applying a biblical worldview.
Let me remind you that in God’s Story, there are four chapters. Chapter one is creation and when God finished, everything was “very good.” Now jump to chapter four, new creation. Question, why does or why will creation need to be renewed? Answer? Chapter two, the fall. In Genesis 3, sin entered God’s very good creation, and everything changed. Human hearts changed and nature changed. From that point on, sin in each and every heart affected us and others. And in some cases, the effect of sin on others is almost unthinkable. There have been wars (as Jesus told us there will be to the end), genocides, murder, corruption and much much more.
Not only that, but nature was corrupted, and the result has been earthquakes, flooding, droughts, famine, and disease which have brought sickness, suffering, and death to all including Christians.
Therefore, creation needs to be renewed and it will be in the end, in chapter four. But the good news is chapter three, redemption through Jesus Christ. As we deal with the effects of chapter two, the fall, we are living in chapter three, redemption. It is our call as Christ’s ambassadors (2 Cor 5:18) to be involved in the ministry of reconciliation (2 Cor 5:20) and thereby become the answer to our own prayers when we pray, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” As the gospel transforms one life at a time, His invisible kingdom invades the heart of the new believer, and this will continue to take place until He returns and makes all things new (Rev 21:5).
I hope you found this clear and helpful. Let me know if you have thoughts or questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
…. that God will be preparing hearts and minds in Liberia for next Wed when I meet with youth to answer their questions.
Thank you for your interest and prayers.
By His grace,
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