“To every thing there is a season…” by David C. Coleman
“To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, And a time to die; A time to plant, And a time to pluck what is planted; A time to kill, And a time to heal; A time to break down, And a time to build up; A time to weep, And a time to laugh; A time to mourn, And a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, And a time to gather stones; A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing; A time to gain, And a time to lose; A time to keep, And a time to throw away; A time to tear, And a time to sew; A time to keep silence, And a time to speak; A time to love, And a time to hate; A time of war, And a time of peace. What profit has the worker from that in which he labors? I have seen the God-given task with which the sons of men are to be occupied.” – Ecclesiastes 3:1-10
Have you ever considered why the Jews have been the most persecuted people in history? I proffer it is due to the fact they are, indeed, God’s chosen people. We must understand that Satan seeks to destroy that which is God’s – whether it be the Israelites as a people or the plans God has for our lives as Christians. Do not be deceived, dear brethren! When considering the lessons of the bible, we must consider not only the parts which are palatable to us, but rather the full counsel of God as evident in the bible’s entirety. We can’t simply pick and choose the parts that seem “right” or “fair” to us. In Ecclesiastes 3, God makes it clear there is a season for all things…even including hate and war! That seems rather contradictory when considering the New Testament and the teachings of Jesus. But, once again, we must consider the entirety of what Jesus said and did (as well as the lessons derived from the Old Testament). God does not change, thus the God concealed in the Old Testament is the same God revealed in the New Testament who walked among us over 2,000 years ago. We all know the parts about “turn the other cheek”, etc., but how many of us account for Jesus’ rampage in the Temple when considering the breadth of Jesus’ lessons? Righteous anger was aroused when He witnessed money changers profiting from selling animals for sacrifice to those who had come to worship before the Lord at the Temple. In Mark 3, Jesus exhibited anger toward the Pharisees when they challenged Him for healing on the Sabbath. Anger in the right context is acceptable. When considering the acceptability of war in the eyes of God, there are countless examples of God instructing the Israelites to go to war with other nations. The Promised Land was not acquired through “negotiations”. The Philistines were not defeated through passivity. Recent events have the entire world focused on a small strip of desert land in the Middle East. As prophesied, Israel has become a burden unto the world. As Christians, we must support Israel in this time of turbulence. As Christians, we must stand with our step-brothers and sisters to which we have been grafted through Jesus Christ. Remember, Satan seeks to destroy that which is God’s. Be forewarned – the bible is clear about what happens to those who turn against Israel. We must understand that God has allowed these current events to happen. We must trust that the Israelites still hear the voice of God and heed His word.
Dear Lord, I come before you now, joined in prayer with those who will read this. We ask that your sovereign will be done in these troubling times. We don’t fully understand the events that are taking place. Many of us find the death of innocent men, women and children horrifying and unacceptable. But we know that all things happen for a reason. Death and tragedy exist on this earth because of our sinfulness. We know You are slow to anger but when Your anger is aroused, judgment will be meted out according to Your standards – not ours. We pray that You will give us discernment as we watch and wait for Your return. Continue to work in our hearts, Lord, so that, on the day of Your glorious return, we will be found faithful and blameless before You. Our future is in Your hands, Lord, and we trust that You know what is best. Have mercy on us and bless us as we continue to fall deeper in love with You. Amen.