Current events concerning the present crisis in Gaza, deadly quakes in Indonesia, famine in third-world nations and our own collapsing economy and war in Iraq bring to mind the words of our Lord from Matthew 24, “For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places” (verse 7, KJV).
Beyond doubt, for those who are caught in the fire fights and bombings, living in the refugee camps, and suffering from severe malnutrition, it certainly must feel like the end of the world. Even for those who’ve been handed pink slips and told to join unemployment lines or are facing foreclosure or bad news from the doctor, things can look pretty bad.
Last Sunday I asked an elder at church what he thinks about Israel’s current invasion of Gaza, and he spoke cautiously, stating that it could be part of the fulfillment of prophecy written in Ezekiel, a book in the Old Testament. Many others agree.
I was very young when I memorized my first Bible verse, about eight-years-old. I remember Dad, a veteran of the Korean War, was very distraught one day. He was sitting at the kitchen table, sobbing uncontrollably and holding a Bible. Troubled by the sight, I approached him timidly and asked, “What’s wrong, Daddy?”
He said, “Honey, I just have sad memories of some awful things I did when I was a soldier. I don’t know if God can ever save me. You’re old enough to read, aren’t you?”
I nodded, and Dad opened up the Bible to Romans 10:9 and told me to read it to him.
“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved” (KJV).
“That’s all I have to do” Dad said. “Confess and believe.”
I’ll never forget the look of hope I saw in Dad’s eyes that day. In fact, my young heart was so impressed by the whole incident that I memorized the Scripture. Dad passed away in October 2002, and I miss him terribly, but he died a believer.
Today, as Israeli artillery bombards Gaza and ethnic warfare continues in the Congo; as severe famine covers Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia, and Kenya and earthquakes wobble Afghanistan and Indonesia:
Believe…in the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Believe…that Jesus Christ is the Son of God who came to this earth as Savior of the world.
Believe… that Jesus died on the cross and shed His blood for your sins.
Don’t stop there! Believe and be baptized to symbolize the cleansing power of the blood of Christ and your new life in Him.
Above all, believe that Jesus rose from the dead and is coming again.
I don’t know when, but it could be sooner then we ever imagined!
Amanda Shannon, Berry