Has anybody out there noticed this world has grown into a more dangerous place to live? I grew up in the Cold War days of the ’60s and ’70s. With a major defense contractor, McDonnell Douglas Aircraft, just a few miles from our house and schools in St. Louis, we knew if the nukes started flying, we would get hit early on in that war.
Then we saw the tearing down of the Berlin Wall, the breakup of the Soviet Union and other signs that a “new era of peace” was upon us. Well, Sep. 11, 2001 popped that bubble.
Now our news is filled with new wars and threats. The new Russia is acting like the old U.S.S.R. There is the rise of radical Islamic militants that are kidnapping Christian girls, taking over large parts of several nations and continuing to fight all around the globe. Innocent people right here in the valley being kidnapped during bank robberies, caught in the crossfire of rival gangs and other reports of violence.
If I did not have faith in the God of Jesus Christ and in a life that goes beyond this one, I would be scared and depressed.
Mankind is never the answer to man’s own problems. And please know that none of this comes as a surprise to me. In II Thessalonians 2:1-12, we are promised that evil will arise as the end of this world draws near. Specifically, a “man of lawlessness” will seek to replace all that is good. This figure is better defined in Revelation 12 and 13.
What is the answer to all this danger and obvious evil? First, I would like to encourage you to seek the God of the Christian Bible. Place your faith in His Son, Jesus of Nazareth, also called the Christ. The empty tomb of Jesus is proof that Jesus has power over death (John 3:3-6, 16; 14:1-6; 20:28-31). Second, grow that faith so you can stand firm against evil (II Thessalonians 2:13-17, Ephesians 6:10-18).
Please know that things will not get better, neighbors. There are things that you should do to protect yourself and your family, but the number one thing you can do is adopt a hope that goes beyond this life. Remember, you are more likely to die of a heart attack than some act of terror.
So, be ready, neighbors. Look me up if I can be of any help. Enjoy the day!
The Rev. Ken Hasekamp is pastor of Adventure Christian Fellowship. Sermon notes is a column by local religious leaders