Catastrophe or Curse

It seems that for the past few years, every time there is a catastrophe, natural or man-made there will be someone who will claim that the United States is under judgment of God. Whether it is due to gays, abortion, feminism, or failure to support Israel there is a catastrophe to the USA.

One pastor linked a policy that President Obama announced that we will not automatically support Israel at the United Nations to the Gulf of Mexico BP oil spill.  According to World Net Daily:

(Pastor Carl)Gallups says while he was preparing his radio show, he wondered what else happened in the time frame of the rig explosion, to see if there was any connection to anything biblical at all.

He found the Fox News article dated April 19, and said what’s significant about the date is that it’s Israel’s Independence Day this year.

Although Israel’s original declaration took place May 14, 1948, the annual celebration actually floats from year to year in Israel, based on the lunar-based Hebrew calendar, and took place on April 19, 2010.

Referring to Israel as a “prophetic signpost,” Gallups said, “It seems to me we’re turning our back on Israel, and that’s a very dangerous biblical or spiritual place to be.”

The article also states:

The minister cites an ancient promise God made to Abraham, the patriarch of the 12 tribes of Israel, one tribe of which is Judah, from which the Jews derive their name.

In the Book of Genesis, God told him, “I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse … .” (Genesis 12:2-3, New International Version)

Here’s the video:

Here’s the problem, when that promise was made, Israel was to be a Theocracy under direct leadership of God. I realize that for some, like Hal Lindsey and John Hagee that Israel still holds a special relationship with God. Israel is no longer a Theocracy and is subject to human failure (Israel’s leaders are not perfect). Hence, our support may very well need to be withdrawn when the State of Israel’s leadership fails.

Another problem is that there seems to be a major cottage business in blaming natural and man-made problems on God’s Judgment. Is it possible that these are just coincidents ? Do we really need to blame our perceived or real sins  (by extension God) as the problem? I suspect that there will be some who will want to find God’s judgment  in whatever disaster may occur. I am not one of those people. I believe that God’s Judgment occurs at the Second Coming. We live in a fallen world. The disasters and catastrophes are a direct result of that imperfect, fallen world.

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Published in: on 06/27/2010 at 7:58 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Self Sacrifice

In Christianity we talk a lot about love and self sacrifice. Every once in a while, there’s a real example of someone who shows us what that looks like. Short version of the story is hat a mayor in Connecticut donated her kidney to someone she only met on Facebook.  Here’s the complete story.

Published in: on 04/21/2010 at 12:48 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Worry and Faith II

In my meanderings I found this article on worry, How to Calm Your Anxiety, Stress, and Worry.

In this article Allia Nolan Zobel sets out ten ways to calm down your worry and stress. My favorite (and MY biggest problem) is  Let There Be No Crisis Before Its Time.  Zobel’s suggestions are very practical and lack the sanctimony that some articles bring to the table. Enjoy!

Published in: on 04/21/2010 at 11:34 am  Leave a Comment  
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God’s Lessons

A week or so ago I received an email from a missionary couple who had just returned to their field. They ran into a couple of rough spots upon their return and asked for prayer. No big deal, only this statement stuck out at me.

“…which has brought us to our knees wondering what the Lord is trying to teach us.”

It’s natural that when problems arise, we try to look for purpose or reason as to why the problem happened. Christians often look for that reason in a lesson from God. This makes every rough spot, every trial into a “teachable moment” from God. While I believe that times of trial can often be “teachable moments”, I question why we have to ask God what He is trying to teach us. If He is an all loving God, wouldn’t He just tell us what He is trying to teach us? First we must figure out what He is trying to teach us, then we must learn the lesson. Seems like a big waste to me.

Not every trying time is an intended lesson from God. God can use the trying times to teach us, mold us, and perfect us. Do I really need to wonder what God is trying to teach me? Probably not. I do, however, need to be open to His teachings. This is not simply a semantic shift. It is a major thought realignment.

We don’t learn life lessons one at a time. Contrary to what we may think single incidents may not always have a profound effect on our thinking.Life lessons (patience, humility,trust in God) are usually long term lessons that need to be reinforced over and over.

Published in: on 03/07/2010 at 9:43 pm  Leave a Comment  
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